Hydrocodone Addiction | Hydrocodone In Ohio

Kimberly Langdon, M.D.

Medically Reviewed By: Kimberly Langdon, M.D.

on December 9, 2022

Regular hydrocodone use can lead to drug addiction, a serious mental health condition defined by an inability to stop taking hydrocodone despite its negative effects. A hydrocodone addiction may also be referred to as a substance use disorder.

Hydrocodone is a prescription opioid analgesic that can treat forms of chronic pain and severe pain, but can also be habit-forming. Brand names for hydrocodone products include Vicodin and Norco. Illicit versions of hydrocodone are also liable for drug abuse.

Someone with hydrocodone addiction may suffer from worsened chronic pain, shortness of breath, anxiety, and other health effects. 

Hydrocodone is a Schedule II controlled substance, and the potential to develop a substance use disorder while taking hydrocodone is recognized by health organizations.

Effects Of Hydrocodone

Hydrocodone works by binding to opioid receptors in the brain, leading to short-term analgesia (pain relief). Activating these receptors can also cause side effects such as:

  • drowsiness
  • sedation
  • lightheadedness
  • shortness of breath
  • constipation
  • dry mouth
  • low blood pressure

These side effects may occur during cases of directed drug use, and may intensify in cases of drug abuse.

Hydrocodone Overdose

Hydrocodone overdose may occur when toxic levels of the drug are ingested, potentially causing severe respiratory depression, clammy skin, and coma. A dose of hydrocodone may become toxic when mixed with depressants such as alcohol or benzodiazepines.

Hydrocodone overdose can be life-threatening, especially if immediate treatment is not administered.

Hydrocodone is also sold as a combination product with acetaminophen. Taking high doses of these combination products can result in an overdose on both hydrocodone and acetaminophen. Hydrocodone and acetaminophen products may also cause liver damage, especially in patients with hepatic (liver) impairment.

Signs Of Hydrocodone Abuse

Hydrocodone abuse may be defined as taking hydrocodone without a prescription, taking hydrocodone in higher doses than you were prescribed, or taking hydrocodone with other substances.

A family member or loved one may be abusing hydrocodone if you notice them:

  • mixing hydrocodone with alcohol, other prescription painkillers, or illicit drugs
  • possessing hydrocodone without a prescription
  • requiring frequent prescription refills

Signs Of Hydrocodone Addiction

While hydrocodone abuse is defined as a single instance of improper use, hydrocodone addiction is a long-term health problem defined by chronic use and the health effects it can bring about. 

Addiction may occur in patients who are taking the drug properly or people taking hydrocodone as a form of substance abuse.

People with addiction may be preoccupied with hydrocodone use. This can result in a shift in priorities, which can be visible to family members and loved ones. Visible signs of hydrocodone addiction may include:

  • changes in social groups
  • decline in work or school performance
  • onset of financial problems
  • showing side effects of opioid use
  • doctor shopping to obtain an opioid prescription

Hydrocodone Dependence & Withdrawal

Hydrocodone dependence is a common aspect of a substance use disorder, where the body and brain change due to heavy use and require the drug to function properly.

Physical dependence can result due to the drug’s binding to opioid receptors. When hydrocodone is not present to bind to these receptors for an extended period of time, the body may enter hydrocodone withdrawal.

Withdrawal symptoms of hydrocodone may include muscle aches, insomnia, excessive sweating, dysphoria, opiate cravings, and increased heart rate. These symptoms can be painful, increasing the chances of a relapse.

Hydrocodone Addiction Treatment In Ohio

Recovering from hydrocodone addiction can be difficult due to a patient’s declining health, the severity of withdrawal, and potential lack of access to pain relievers. A professional hydrocodone addiction treatment program can put patients in an environment that is focused on their recovery.

Treatment centers for opioid addiction may offer services such as monitored detoxes, tapering schedules, methadone and buprenorphine prescriptions in a medication-assisted treatment program, and behavioral therapy to maximize each patient’s chances of addiction recovery.

To find out if our inpatient opioid addiction treatment program works for you or your loved one, please contact Ohio Recovery Center today.


How Long Does Hydrocodone Stay In Your System?

Hydrocodone can stay in your system for about 19 hours after the last dose. Drug testing methods can detect hydrocodone between several hours to 90 days after the last dose.

Learn more about How Long Hydrocodone Stays In Your System

What Happens When You Snort Hydrocodone?

When you snort hydrocodone, you may feel a rapid onset of effects like drowsiness and sedation. However, this places undue stress on your nasal passages and respiratory system. Repeated snorting can cause long-term nasal damage and an increased risk of a substance use disorder.

Learn more about Snorting Hydrocodone

Can You Inject Hydrocodone?

Hydrocodone is sometimes crushed into a fine powder and injected into a vein. However, abusing hydrocodone in this way can cause serious medical problems including life-threatening infections and fatal overdose.

Learn more about Injecting Hydrocodone

Can You Smoke Hydrocodone?

Yes, hydrocodone can be smoked but it’s not recommended. Smoking hydrocodone is a form of drug abuse and can lead to a variety of serious side effects.

Learn more about Smoking Hydrocodone

Does Hydrocodone Get You High?

Yes, hydrocodone can get you high, especially if you take it in high doses or in a manner other than its intended use. Getting high on pain relievers such as hydrocodone can increase your risk of overdose and serious health effects.

Learn more about a Hydrocodone High

How Much Does Hydrocodone Cost On The Street?

The average street value of hydrocodone ranges between $5 and $25 per tablet. The exact price depends on the strength. In general, the higher the strength, the higher the price. 

Also, the drug tends to cost more in rural areas and less in big cities. That’s because big cities often have higher supplies of hydrocodone, which leads to lower prices.

Learn more about Hydrocodone Street Price & Prescription Cost

Can You Take Hydrocodone While Pregnant?

Pregnant women should avoid hydrocodone because it’s risky and potentially dangerous for the child.

Learn more about Taking Hydrocodone While Pregnant

  1. Food and Drug Administration - HYSINGLA (HYDROCODONE BITARTRATE) Label https://www.accessdata.fda.gov/drugsatfda_docs/label/2016/206627s004lbl.pdf
  2. National Institute on Drug Abuse - Prescription Opioids DrugFacts | National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA) https://nida.nih.gov/publications/drugfacts/prescription-opioids
  3. National Library of Medicine: StatPearls - Hydrocodone https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/books/NBK537288/

Written by Ohio Recovery Center Editorial Team

© 2024 Ohio Recovery Center | All Rights Reserved

* This page does not provide medical advice.

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