How Does Percocet Dependence Develop?

Percocet is a brand name drug that is used in the treatment of pain. It’s formula contains oxycodone mixed with acetaminophen. Oxycodone is a synthetic drug which is an opioid, and has effects similar to morphine or codeine. Acetaminophen helps to safely increase the effects of the oxycodone, and one cannot develop a dependence on it. However, it is easy to develop a dependence to oxycodone.

Percocet Dependence

How long does it take to develop a dependence on Percocet? It can develop as soon as a couple of weeks or take as long as a month, when an individual is taking Percocet every day. It’s easy to tell if an individual is dependent upon Percocet when they stop taking it and experience withdrawal symptoms.

However, dependency on a drug does not necessarily mean addiction to the drug. Dependency means that one cannot stop taking Percocet without experiencing the withdrawal symptoms. An addiction to means that the individual craves the drug. Dependency can develop even with prescribed doses of Percocet taken over a period of time. For those individuals to who take the drug more than prescribed, the dependency can turn into addiction.

It is estimated that while the majority of individuals who take Percocet don’t get addicted, approximately 10% will have obsessive thoughts about taking the drug again when they stop.

Symptoms of Percocet Dependence

  1. Individuals who are dependent on Percocet develop an increased tolerance to the drug. This means that they need more of it to feel its effects. While this might also just mean that the individual’s pain is more severe, it is often a warning sign of developing a dependence.
  1. When the individual experiences withdrawal symptoms when they stop taking the drug.
  1. When the individual needs to take Percocet in order to get relief from the withdrawal symptoms.

Physical Dependence

This can be defined as the physical need to take Percocet so that the body can function. The main ingredient of the drug, oxycodone, starts to become incorporated into the body’s system, and becomes part of the normal chemistry process. Therefore, when an individual stops taking Percocet, they experience withdrawal symptoms, as the brain tries to re-regulate the body’s chemistry.

Psychological Dependence

Signs of psychological dependence on Percocet include:

  • A compulsive need to take the drug;
  • Going to different doctors to get new prescriptions;
  • Crushing or snorting the drug to feel heightened effects faster.

Stopping taking Percocet abruptly leads to a period of withdrawal, which can be painful and harmful. Some symptoms of withdrawal are anxiety, insomnia, flu like symptoms, nausea, muscle aches, sweating and seizures.

Should you or a loved one have any questions about dependency on prescription medication and are looking for answers, call The Villa. We can help you on your path to recovery.