Percocet is a prescription painkiller that combines oxycodone and acetaminophen. Though this medication can be helpful to many veterans who are struggling with pain, the truth of the matter is that it is a highly addictive substance. Percocet addiction is a serious risk for veterans who need pain relief but also struggle with substance use disorders and other mental health conditions. If you are a veteran who takes Percocet, what should you do?
Below, we cover what veterans need to know about Percocet addiction from the symptoms to the side effects. Most importantly, we’ll walk you through the treatment options for an addiction to Percocet and the steps you can take today toward recovery.
How Does Percocet Addiction Affect Veterans?
Percocet is a type of opioid or prescription painkiller that many veterans are prescribed as a way to treat pain. Veterans frequently face service-related injuries that can cause both acute and chronic pain. While the goal of taking pain medication like this is to manage the symptoms in order to improve veterans’ quality of life, the risk of addiction comes into play.
Veterans are more likely than the general population to face challenges with substance use. Specifically, studies from the National Institute on Drug Abuse and Addiction show that veterans often misuse opioids like Percocet more than other illegal drugs. Having access to prescription painkillers because of injuries and pain is one of the contributing factors to this statistic.
Are you or a loved one in need of help?
There are many other reasons why veterans are at a greater risk for struggling with addiction and mental health concerns. These include:
- Combat exposure
- Military sexual trauma
- Transition back to civilian life
- Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD)
- Untreated mental illness
The trials that veterans face, both physically and emotionally, can make them feel as though they need to turn to drugs like Percocet to find relief. But substance use only serves to make the symptoms worse in the long run. Plus, the side effects of misusing opioids can be dangerous and even fatal, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). This is why it’s so important for veterans to seek out help for Percocet addiction before it is too late.
What Are the Symptoms and Side Effects of Percocet Addiction?
When it comes to misusing opioid prescriptions that are legally prescribed, it can be challenging to detect the warning signs of addiction. Some red flags to look out for in yourself or family members would be taking the drug:
- More frequently than prescribed
- In larger doses than prescribed
- Outside of its intended use for pain treatment
- During times of mental and emotional distress
Another clear sign that you are struggling with a Percocet addiction is if you experience withdrawal symptoms when you are not actively taking the medication. Opioid withdrawal can not only be uncomfortable, but it can cause the body to react in life-threatening ways. Common symptoms of withdrawal from Percocet and other opioids include:
- Nausea and vomiting
- Body aches
- Increased anxiety
- Worsened depression
The detox phase of recovery can be particularly challenging because of the effects of Percocet withdrawal. Opioids can cause the body and brain to have a chemical dependency on the drug, meaning that they aren’t sure how to function without it. The body can then begin to shut down, even leading to labored breathing, seizures, and heart failure.
Thus, medical detox in a supervised environment is usually the best course of action when coming off of opioids. Too often, veterans are met with fatal consequences as a result of Percocet withdrawal and overdose. This is why finding a facility that can keep veterans safe through all the discomfort can make a huge difference in the long-term success of recovering from a Percocet addiction.
How Can Veterans Get Help for Addiction to Percocet?
The best way for veterans to safely and effectively recover from a Percocet addiction is to find professional treatment that is created by veterans for veterans. Veteran-focused treatment looks at addressing the entire experience of serving, including the physical, mental, and emotional aspects. So veterans who received specialized care will be able to do more than just get sober—they will be able to improve upon their overall health.
This is essential for veterans who are struggling with an opioid addiction that’s related to pain. Whether from a service injury or otherwise, living with pain can put up obstacles to having independence and a good quality of life. But what happens when the risks of taking opioids are simply too great? How can veterans manage their pain symptoms?
One of the best ways that veterans can do this in recovery is through physical fitness. When combined with the intensive mental health treatment that veterans need to face the challenges of their addiction head on, physical fitness programs can help patients to feel stronger, more confident, and more prepared to maintain recovery. It can also help to decrease their pain so that there is not as much of a need to depend on opioids.
Other services complement the physical fitness journey that veterans can take in recovery, such as:
- Nutrition education
- Equine therapy
- Cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT)
- Eye movement desensitization and reprocessing (EMDR) therapy
- Art therapy
- Group sessions
- Family counseling
Prescription Opioid Addiction Treatment at Heroes’ Mile
For veterans who are looking for recovery that helps them to feel better in every sense, Heroes’ Mile has the services needed. This type of specialized care is made for veterans by other veterans who understand how difficult it can be to return after serving. The goal at our facility is to give veterans the tools they need to get back on their feet and hold strong through all of life’s ups and downs. We’re here for you through the most painful of times and through your proudest moments as well.
To get more information on how you can recover from a Percocet addiction or other substance use and mental health struggles, give us a call at 888-838-6692. If you aren’t sure where to start to look for help, you can also reach out to us through our confidential contact form. We are here to serve you.