The Physical Effects of Percocet

Drug abuse in the United States increases every year, specifically for prescription drugs. While some may view prescription drugs as safer than illegal substances, they are just as dangerous, putting users at risk for serious health concerns and overdose. Even at prescribed doses, prescription drugs like Percocet can become addictive. However, at larger doses and when used recreationally, Percocet can become fatal.

Percocet is a powerful opioid medication, prescribed to patients suffering from moderate to severe pain related to injury, surgery and other acute illnesses. Percocet combines oxycodone — a powerful opioid painkiller medication with effects similar to that of morphine in large doses — and acetaminophen — a mild pain reliever and fever reducer. This combination increases the potency of Percocet, increasing the likelihood of users becoming addicted if the drug is not taken as prescribed.

The Physical Effects of Percocet
Percocet is a fast-acting narcotic, providing immediate relief within minutes of use. It directly affects the central nervous system, blocking pain receptors in the brain and altering how the brain responds to pain. In higher doses, Percocet produces a state of euphoria and extreme relaxation in users.

Medically, it is prescribed as a slow release drug over an extended period of time. However, it is not uncommon for abusers to crush the pill and snort it for immediate effects. Altering the intended form of Percocet can result in life-threatening consequences, because it can release too much of the drug at once and increase the risk of overdose.

Percocet, like many abused prescription drugs, eventually takes a toll on the mind and body when used in excess. Unlike addiction on some illegal street drugs, Percocet addiction can be more discrete. Users may function normally depending on the severity of abuse. However, there are some tell-tale signs indicating possible addiction. Some of the most common abuse symptoms include:

  • Confusion
  • Fatigue
  • Constipation
  • Headaches
  • Vomiting
  • Sweating
  • Dry mouth
  • Slow breathing
Percocet, like other medications with opioid influences, may cause a user to experience itching and skin irritations from an allergic reaction or neurotransmitter stimulation. Prior to using Percocet or any other medication, it is important to know if you are allergic and be able to identify when you are having an adverse reaction.

When having an allergic reaction to medication like Percocet, the body produces an excess of antibodies meant to release chemicals in the body. These chemicals can immediately cause allergy symptoms in the sinuses and lungs. Percocet medication may also delay immune responses in the skin, resulting in an itchy sensation or a rash.

Percocet and other opioid drugs may also trigger the itch gene, the gastrin-releasing peptide receptor. This receptor transmits itching sensations from one neuron to the next. Though there is no cure for the itching sensation, researchers are close to finding a solution. Until then, users are prescribed a topical cream or an alternative drug for relief.

Users who have consumed Percocet over an extended period of time are at an increased risk of becoming dependent on the drug. The brain and the body will no longer be able to function without it, and abruptly quitting Percocet can cause uncomfortable and sometimes life threatening withdrawal symptoms. Some of the most common withdrawal symptoms include:

  • Chills
  • Nausea
  • Vomiting
  • Abdominal pain
  • Fever
  • Anxiety
  • Panic attacks
  • Muscle pains

If users have a severe addiction, medical professionals advise against quitting Percocet cold turkey. Immediate removal of the drug from a user’s system can intensify withdrawal symptoms. It is recommended users gradually taper off the drug to minimize the withdrawal pains.

Other than experiencing painful withdrawal symptoms, Percocet users risk developing other health conditions from prolonged use. Long-term effects of Percocet include:

  • Liver toxicity
  • Kidney failure
  • Severe constipation
  • Urinary retention
  • Infection
  • Respiratory failure
  • Overdose
  • Death
If you or someone you know is struggling with opiate addiction, don’t hesitate in seeking help. Resources like The Recovery Village are available to guide you through finding a treatment plan that best suits your needs. Supported by our team of trained medical professionals, you will be able to develop the skills necessary to live a safer, and healthier life.
The Physical Effects of Percocet
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