OxyContin Addiction Treatment

OxyContin, a drug commonly referred to as “hillbilly heroin,” is among the most commonly abused prescription drugs in the United States.

Unfortunately, it is also one of the most dangerous. First appearing in 1995, OxyContin is an opioid used to treat severe pain. When used as prescribed, OxyContin can significantly mitigate the patient’s experience of pain without issue other than several side effects. Too often, however, those who are prescribed OxyContin often use it nonmedically, using more than prescribed, supplementing the prescription with other drugs of addiction or continuing to use the drug without a prescription.

OxyContin abuse of this nature quickly leads to OxyContin addiction that requires treatment at an OxyContin rehab.

What is Addiction?

OxyContin addiction develops when the drug us abused and used nonmedically. Increasing the dose prescribed, taking the drug more often than prescribed, increasing the potency of the drug by chewing slow release tablets before swallowing or combining the drug with alcohol or other drugs – all of these actions of abuse lead to a physical tolerance and dependence upon the drug and, soon, a psychological dependence on the opiate in order to feel feelings of pleasure or calm.

OxyContin addiction is more than just a physical dependence; it involves psychological dependence as well. Psychological OxyContin addiction is defined by cravings for the drug when the user feels stressed, tired, angry, bored or uncomfortable in any way. When an OxyContin addict tries to stop using the drug, they experience intense cravings in addition to physical withdrawal symptoms that can be overwhelming.

Combined, the mental health problems and physical aspects of OxyContin addiction make it almost impossible and absolutely unsafe for an addict to stop using the drug on their own. An OxyContin detox and addiction treatment at an OxyContin rehab is recommended to safely stop using OxyContin and break free from addiction once and for all.

Quitting “Cold Turkey”

A “cold turkey” OxyContin detox means abruptly discontinuing the use of the drug with no treatment. The slang term “cold turkey” is now used in reference to quitting all drugs, but was originally used to describe opioid (such as OxyContin) withdrawal because in this process the addict experiences cold sweats and goose bumps that resemble a cold turkey. It’s dangerous to attempt alone, but those who opt for it under the right medical supervision will find that it’s the quickest way to be free of physical addiction.


Effective and safe OxyContin rehab starts with a medical detox that is closely monitored by medical professionals who specialize in opiate addiction treatment. Through this process – that may or may not include medication, depending upon the individual – the OxyContin addict can safely stop using the drug and have medical assistance as they deal with the physical withdrawal symptoms.

Immediately following OxyContin detox, OxyContin addiction treatment begins. Here the OxyContin addict has the opportunity to explore why and how they developed an OxyContin addiction in the first place and learn how to effectively break that addiction and avoid relapse after they return home.

Non-Opiate Medication

Another way OxyContin addiction withdrawal is treated is with non-opiate medication. These medications aim to reduce the intensity of individual withdrawal symptoms. This approach is utilized in inpatient OxyContin rehab programs. The medical staff will prescribe a list of different medications for withdrawal symptoms such as anxiety, nausea and diarrhea, as well as a medication designed to lower the elevated levels of adrenaline in the addict’s body. This approach is meant to make the withdrawal period less uncomfortable than quitting cold turkey.

Substitute Opiate Medications

One of the most popular forms of OxyContin addiction help is the use of a substitute opiate to treat withdrawal symptoms. Methadone and Suboxone are the two substitute opiate medications that are most often used to help someone recover from OxyContin addiction, because these substitutes activate the same receptors in the brain as OxyContin. The benefit to these medications is that they stay in the system longer than OxyContin, so an addict can reach a more stable state in which they are not always on the hunt for more OxyContin. They can attempt to move to a more stable daily life as they slowly taper down their dose until they are completely drug-free. In the meantime, the withdrawing OxyContin addict will experience less severe symptoms and more smoothly begin the transition to a functional and balanced life.

Types of Addiction Treatment

There are a number of different types of OxyContin addiction treatment to choose from. In some cases, opiate addiction treatment can be treated on an outpatient basis by a doctor certified to prescribe buprenorphine (otherwise known as Suboxone or Subutex). In other cases, a more intensive treatment is required. Outpatient OxyContin addiction treatment usually focuses solely on the psychological addiction to the drug, and inpatient OxyContin rehab provides both a medical detox and psychotherapeutic treatment. This is the highest standard of treatment providing the best results for those who are struggling to break free from long-term OxyContin addiction.

Do You Need Treatment?

There are many signs of OxyContin addiction and substance abuse, some more severe than others. The simplest sign of addiction is the inability to stop using OxyContin even when you make a serious effort to do so. The presence of physical withdrawal symptoms like nausea, dizziness, vomiting, headache, weakness, and breathing problems are also an indication of OxyContin addiction when psychological cravings are present.

If you or someone you love needs OxyContin addiction treatment, seek help immediately. Call the number listed above to locate an OxyContin addiction treatment center near you.