By Sandy Baker
What Is Oxymorphone?
Oxymorphone is an opioid drug sometimes prescribed for moderate to severe pain relief. Doctors tend to avoid prescribing oxymorphone unless absolutely necessary because it can be habit-forming. As an opiate, oxymorphone carries a significant amount of risk when misused.
According to the National Institute on Drug Abuse, prescription opioids like oxymorphone were involved in 14,139 overdose deaths in 2019. If you are taking this drug and not using it as prescribed, reach out to an opioid treatment program that can provide you with the support you need to stop.
How Is Oxymorphone Used?
Available typically in tablet form, oxymorphone prescriptions often require patients to take them every 4 to 6 hours when it is necessary. Prescription requirements differ from person to person. Doctors prescribe the lowest effective dose for a person to minimize the risk of addiction development.
Is Oxymorphone Addictive?
Oxymorphone works by changing the function of the brain. When a person takes this medication, the drug works to reduce or eliminate the pain signals traveling from the body to the brain. It also creates a sense of euphoria. That “high” may feel so good that the brain wants you to replicate it over and over again. Over time, tolerance, dependence, and sometimes addiction form.
- Tolerance: Regular use of this drug will lead to tolerance, a state in which the body becomes used to the amount of the drug being taken and requires more of it to get the same pain relief or high. Taking too much oxymorphone may lead to an overdose.
- Dependence: A person may develop dependence as their body and brain become used to the presence of the drug and require it to function “normally.” The main sign of dependence is withdrawal symptoms. If a person who has become dependent on oxymorphone stops taking it, their body will undergo withdrawal symptoms such as cravings, agitation, anxiety, and nausea.
- Addiction: Physical dependence on oxymorphone can lead to psychological dependence and addiction. Someone who is addicted to the drug recognizes that they should not be taking the drug or so much of it, but they feel as though they need to do so. Habit-forming drugs like oxymorphone can create addiction within a short period of time, sometimes after just a few days of misuse.
How Do You Know You Have an Oxymorphone Addiction?
As a prescription drug, oxymorphone may be necessary to take over a period of time as your body manages the healing process. Use the drug only as prescribed. If you need to use more or are not getting the desired pain relief, contact your doctor before using more of this drug.
Signs of addiction may include:
- Needing to use more of the drug than prescribed, not getting relief from it
- Running out of the medication before you should
- Thinking about using the drug often, waiting for your next dose
- Feeling anxious, irritable, and angry when not using the drug
- Seeking out the drug from other sources, such as taking someone else’s prescription
- Intense cravings or thoughts of the drug that are hard to ignore
- Doctor shopping – the act of seeking out the drug from multiple doctors
If you are engaging in any of these actions, it’s essential to realize addiction and dependence may be occurring. The sooner you reach out for treatment, the sooner you may start feeling better.
It’s hard to know if the pain you feel is from your injury or addiction. If you’ve been using oxymorphone for some time, it may be best to work with a medical team to discontinue use and try alternatives that aren’t habit-forming. You may get the help you need for your opiate addiction and relief from pain.
What Type of Addiction Treatment Is Necessary for Oxymorphone?
At The Ranch at Dove Tree, you’ll receive a full assessment to determine what your needs are. Addiction to oxymorphone may range widely from moderate to severe. In a medical detox, we’ll help you slowly stop using this medication in a safe way while also providing you with exceptional resources to help alleviate withdrawal symptoms and manage chronic pain.
Your first step is to contact us to learn more about our detox programs and inpatient therapy. Some people may benefit from our outpatient care. We offer a range of therapy programs, including holistic programs designed to help you overcome both your pain and addiction.