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Norco Addiction, Abuse and Treatment

Norco abuse and addiction is a very serious issue for so many people. Fortunately, treatment is available to help with recovery. The problem is that many people don’t understand this medication and why it’s so dangerous.

You may be in a situation yourself where you started using Norco, and then formed an addiction. Sometimes this happens without people meaning for it to happen. Other times it happens because people intentionally abuse it. In either case, it’s important to know about the dangers of Norco, and what to do to get off it.

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What Exactly is Norco?

Norco is a medication that is a combination of acetaminophen and hydrocodone. Hydrocodone is an opioid pain reliever, which is sometimes referred to as a narcotic. Acetaminophen is added to this drug because it enhances its effects.

Norco just one of the brand names for hydrocodone and acetaminophen. It goes by a number of other brand names too, and these include:

  • Hycet
  • Lorcet
  • Lortab
  • Lortab Elixir

When this medication is used as it’s intended, it is generally considered to be safe. However the potential for abusing it is pretty high. With normal use, the Norco pill’s side effects should be fairly minimal. When it’s misused, on the other hand, it can cause a lot of unwanted side effects. We’ll talk in more detail about what those are in just a moment.

Yes, Norco and Vicodin are essentially the same medication. These are just two different brand names. People are often confused about this because Vicodin is usually prescribed more often. Also, Vicodin is a name that people who abuse prescription painkillers are quite familiar with.

Please don’t be misled. Norco is the same as Vicodin, and it can be just as dangerous when it is being misused or abused. Both drugs are highly addictive and will lead to addiction with chronic use or misuse.

Vicodin is usually prescribed to treat moderate to severe pain. For mild pain, opiate drugs like this one are usually avoided. This is a painkiller that is usually given to people who:

  • Have severe back pain
  • Have given birth by cesarean section
  • Have undergone surgery
  • Are recovering from extreme dental surgery
  • Suffer from some other type of acute bodily pain

This medication is not intended to be a long-term solution for pain. Unfortunately, there are doctors who may treat it that way. In these cases, it’s usually because their patients convince them that nothing else works. Doctors don’t like to see their patients in pain, so they give in.

So many Vicodin addiction stories include this type of scenario. Vicodin is quite effective to relieve pain in the short-term, but taking it long-term is never recommended. The result could be an opiate addiction that’s very hard to recover from.

Side Effects: What Can This Medication do to Your Body?

When taking Norco as prescribed, some side effects are very common. The same is true for any opioid medication.

Norco Abuse and Addiction Information

People may typically experience:

  • Drowsiness
  • Nausea
  • Vomiting
  • Bouts of constipation
  • Feeling dizzy

These side effects are really only a mild nuisance for some people. They’re so focused on getting pain relief that they usually don’t allow them to bother them too much.

Serious issues may arise when this drug is used for too long, or when too much is taken at once. It’s possible to experience more severe side effects, such as:

  • Problems with breathing
  • Stomach pain
  • Feeling itchy
  • Feeling itchy
  • Becoming anxious or depressed
  • Feeling confused or having strange thoughts

These types of effects should not occur with normal use of this drug. If they do, they should be reported to the prescribing physician right away.

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What is Norco Abuse?

Norco abuse occurs when someone begins misusing their medication. There are a few different ways that this can occur, and they include

  • Taking more of the drug than they should at one time
  • Taking doses that are too close to one another
  • Mixing this medication with alcohol or other drugs to get high
  • Chewing the pills instead of swallowing them with water
  • Crushing the tablets and mixing them with water to inject them

All of these are typical ways that people will abuse Norco. Of course, pharmacies are only allowed to dispense a certain amount of this drug at one time. People have found ways to get around the current prescription laws for narcotic medications. It’s fairly easy to find Norco on the streets. It’s also available to purchase illegally online. One of the more common ways people abuse this drug is by doctor shopping.

Doctor shopping involves visiting more than one physician in order to obtain a prescription. Fortunately, many states have taken steps to make this impossible. It used to be a much bigger problem than it is today. In some states, controlled medications are entered into a database where they are tracked. This has deterred many people from this practice.

The Lorcet drug’s high is quite intense. Sometimes people will feel a bit of euphoria even after taking a normal dose of this medication. It makes them feel calm and relaxed. For many individuals, this can make them want to come back and take it again and again.

If you were to do an online search, you would find a lot of information on this drug’s high. Online forums like Reddit, Erowid and Bluelight are filled with people advising others on how to abuse Lorcet properly. Because it’s an opioid drug, it mimics the way endorphins work in the body. Endorphins produce pleasurable feelings, and this medication causes those same sensations.

When people take Lorcet in larger doses, they feel like all is right with the world. They forget all of their problems and feel warm and fuzzy inside. They don’t have any more pain, which was likely a major source of their stress. Some people say that it’s even better than the feeling they get when using marijuana.

Yes, abusing Norco is extremely bad for you. It can cause undesirable effects that really don’t make the high worth it at all. For those who are abusing this drug, they’re likely doing so because it’s fun for them. They enjoy feeling good and the high that goes along with taking Norco. What they don’t realize is that with every pill, they’re doing more and more damage. Both their bodies and minds are being affected each time they use.

Norco abuse doesn’t always mean taking this drug every day. For many people, they’ll only abuse it sporadically. Sometimes people will take Norco every other day, or only on the weekends. They don’t see a problem with this because their use doesn’t appear to be getting out of hand. 

It’s important for you to know what can happen if you continue to abuse this opioid medication. The short-term effects are serious, and can lead to both physical and mental problems in a short period of time.

With short-term abuse, Verdrocet can actually do quite a bit of damage. At first, it may appear to control pain very well. Some side effects may be present, but they shouldn’t be too troublesome. However, it doesn’t take long before some other effects begin to become apparent.

Some of the more common short-term effects of Verdrocet abuse include:

  • Reduced amounts of worry and stress
  • Feeling numb, both physically and emotionally
  • Feeling lethargic and sleepy most of the time
  • The risk of a bowel obstruction
  • A slower heart rate than normal
  • Problems with urination

As you can see, a lot of those effects are quite pleasurable. People who are able to avoid the more severe side effects will continue taking it for that reason. However, it’s important to note that it doesn’t always take a long time to become addicted to Verdrocet. Once you’re addicted, quitting this drug is very difficult.

Teen Norco Abuse

Unfortunately, teenagers frequently get their hands on prescription painkillers like Norco. Quite often, parents leave their medications completely within reach. Even when they don't, it's possible for teens to get them from friends or even relatives.

Teenagers can become very good at hiding their drug use from those closest to them. When teens are using Norco, it's often even easier. With no telltale odors to give them away (like when teens are using marijuana), they can keep it a secret. Teenagers who use pain pills - even in the short-term - can develop a tolerance to them quickly. This can happen in as little as a few days.

According to Fox News, 60% of prescription pill users will start using before the age of 15. In addition to that, close to one in five teenagers admits to using medications without a prescription. That works out to be about 4.5 million teens in the U.S.

For parents, the thought of their child abusing drugs is a scary one. Many aren't sure what they should be looking for when it comes to the signs of prescription drug use. If you're the parent of a teenager, you should look for the following if you suspect an opioid addiction:

  • Loss of appetite
  • A sudden change in appearance and personal hygiene
  • A change in sleeping habits
  • Mood swings or personality changes
  • Pin-point pupils
  • Changes in energy levels
  • Spending time with different types of people

If you suspect that your teenager is abusing drugs, it's important to act quickly. Talk with your teen about the dangers and encourage them to get help voluntarily. Doing so can save them from a life of addiction, as well as life threatening consequences.

There are ways that you can encourage your teenager to stay away from drugs like Norco as well. You can:

  • Encourage them to stay involved in positive activities. Ask them to join clubs at school, or get involved in sports. If you belong to a church, have them attend the church's youth group.
  • Get to know their friends well. Maintain good, open, honest relationships with their friends. If possible, get to know their friends' parents too.
  • Talk with them often about drugs and their dangers. You want to avoid lecturing, but make sure they know how serious this problem is becoming.
  • Let them know you're there for them. It's so important for you to keep an open relationship with your children. If they know they can talk to you, they're less likely to start using drugs.
  • Give them plenty of positive affirmations. Recognize great achievements, such as passing a particularly hard test in school. This will foster a much more positive relationship between you.

Forming a Norco Addiction

An addiction to Norco happens when someone has been abusing this drug for a period of time. One day they may wake up and realize that they feel like they need it to feel OK. This occurs because of the way Norco affects the brain.

Your brain normally produces endorphins on its own. They are responsible for helping you to feel good, happy and secure. However, when you’ve been misusing Norco, the medication begins producing them instead. After some time, it’s as though your brain “forgets” to produce them on its own.

This means that if you stop using, you no longer feel that sense of happiness and security. You don’t feel like yourself, and you turn to Norco to help you feel better. At that point, you have formed an addiction to this drug.

People often want to know, how long does it take to become addicted to hydrocodone and acetaminophen?. This is a great question, but there really aren’t any hard and fast answers. The fact is that an addiction and form any time after you’ve started abusing it.

For some people, an addiction can happen quickly. It’s not uncommon for people to form addictions to Norco after only using this medication for two weeks. For others, it can take several months of regular use to become addicted. Every person is different as far as how they respond to opioid painkillers.

Of course, for someone with a history of addiction, it’s likely to happen much faster. This is because their brains have already been “trained” to respond to these types of drugs.

The most important thing for you to know is that you can get hooked on Norco. Once you are, stopping it on your own is nearly impossible. You will probably need to enter a Norco treatment center in order to recover successfully.

There are a few different warning signs you can look for to let you know that an addiction is eminent. If you can spot these early signs, you may be able to recover with counseling. Keep in mind, however, that it’s always good to talk with a professional before stopping this medication. You may need a more structured treatment program than you realize.

A few of the more common Lortab addiction warning signs you can look for include:

  • Noticing that your normal dosage of this drug doesn’t seem to be working as well
  • Experiencing withdrawals when you miss a dose of your medication
  • Having cravings for Lortab
  • Using this drug as a way to help yourself feel better emotionally
  • Feeling panicked if you feel like you may run out of your medication

Now that you know the warning signs, and how long it takes to get addicted, you need another question answered. You need to know whether or not you’re a Xodol addict.

While it might be difficult, try to take an unbiased look at your life. Do you notice any of the following?:

  • Obsessive thoughts about making sure you take your medication on time
  • Obsessive thoughts about making sure you always have enough of it on hand at all times
  • Problems with focusing on any one task at a time
  • Significant and severe mood swings
  • Many of the more problematic side effects of Xodol, such as itching
  • Extreme paranoia, anxiety and possible panic attacks
  • A return of your pain

Typically, Xodol addicts make their medication the top priority in their lives. They may have problems being productive at work because of this. They often have relationship problems with the people they love the most. Financial difficulties are also difficult at this stage because of all the money being spent on the drugs.

What Happens When You Mix Norco With Other Substances?

Abusing Norco on its own is dangerous enough. When you add other substances into the mix, there can be additional consequences. People mix drugs for various reasons. The most common one is to enhance the high that results. Quite often, people start mixing substances when they form a tolerance to one of the drugs they use.

People will commonly mix alcohol with hydrocodone products like Norco. This is especially dangerous because both drugs are depressants. You're likely to experience:

  • Impaired judgment
  • Problems with thinking clearly
  • Loss of psychomotor skills
  • Extreme fatigue
  • An upset stomach
  • Ulcers in the stomach

If you take too much alcohol or Norco at the same time, you could suffer from an overdose. This is a medical emergency that could result in death if you don't get immediate help.

Alcohol isn't the only drug that people might try mixing with Norco. People also commonly mix other opioid drugs, muscle relaxers and benzodiazepines with it. Any combination could have devastating consequences.

Ways to Find Out if You Need Addiction Help

Perhaps as you look at the above list of symptoms, you can see many of them within yourself. Maybe you’ve noticed how obsessed you’ve become over your medication. Or, perhaps you’re realizing that the problems you’re having at work could be because of Norco.

Even so, you’re still not completely convinced that you have an addiction. Denial is extremely common for people with opioid drug addictions. They tend to believe that they have everything under control. While they enjoy using their medications, they think they can stop whenever they feel like it. This simply is not the case for most people.

If you’re still not convinced that you are an addict, you need to take some additional steps. It’s so important for you to come to terms with your relationship with this opiate pain reliever.

Sometimes it can help to answer a few more questions about your drug use patterns. This is why a prescription drug addiction quiz like this one might work well for you.

This quiz will ask you to go pretty in depth about your opioid drug use. As long as you’re honest, you’ll get the appropriate results. Some people like to take quizzes because they help them to think about their drug use in a different way. This might be a method that works well for you too.

After you have taken the quiz, you will want to pay close attention to the results you get. If you need to go to a Norco rehab facility, the results will indicate that to you. It’s really important for you to follow the recommendations you receive.

Prescription Drug Addiction Quiz

Looking at symptoms and taking quizzes are helpful. However, sometimes there is just no substitute for talking with a real person. This is why so many Vicodin treatment centers offer free addiction assessments over the phone.

Once you are able to talk with a professional, you can explain everything about you Norco use. You can talk with them about how much you take and how often. They’ll ask you questions about how the drug makes you feel, and why you’ve been using it. It’s important to be honest when you answer their questions. Please know that you won’t be judged in any way. They’re only trying to help you.

After your assessment is over, you’ll be given a recommendation for treatment. If you need help for your Norco addiction, this might be the best way to know for sure.

Free Addiction Assessments

Reasons to Consider Going to a Norco Rehab Facility for Recovery

If you’ve determined that you are addicted to Norco, you may feel shocked or surprised. Most of the time, people never intend for addictions to happen to them. This is especially true for those who have just been taking this drug for far too long.

Even if this has been your experience, you should consider getting help for your addiction.

There are a lot of reasons why going to a treatment program for Norco would be beneficial for you. These include:

  • The fact that this drug is dangerous to quit on your own
  • You need professional support during this critical time in your life
  • Being able to talk with others who are also in recover will greatly benefit you
  • The fact that you’ll learn how you can cope with your life without drugs
  • Getting healing for your addiction right down to the root of the problem

Of course, the main reason you should get help is because this medication is dangerous. If you continue to take it long-term, the effects of it can be devastating you, both physically and mentally.

Vicodin is a drug that affects the central nervous system. Therefore it stands to reason that it would greatly impact you physically. When you take this medication long-term, you’re likely to experience:

  • A much slower breathing rate than normal
  • A slower heart rate than normal
  • An increased sensitivity to pain
  • An increased chance of injuring yourself due to being sedated
  • Problems with hormone function
  • A weakened immune system
  • An increased risk of cancer
  • An increased risk of heart attack
  • The potential for kidney problems
  • Testosterone depletion in men
  • Fertility problems in women

When you use Norco long-term, your brain is heavily impacted. It can cause damage to the pleasure center of your brain, and this can lead to:

  • Symptoms of depression
  • Possible suicidal thoughts because of being depressed
  • Symptoms of anxiety
  • Becoming paranoid
  • Symptoms of psychosis
  • Frequent mood swings

You may find that you begin to feel irritable or anxious nearly all the time. In some people, they even begin having hallucinations or delusions as a result.

This medication may be prescribed, but it is by no means safe. Long-term use is detrimental you physically and mentally. In order to avoid many of these long-term effects, it’s essential to get help as soon as possible.

What to Expect When Attending a Treatment Program for Your Vicodin Addiction

Now that you know about the risks, you may be considering getting treatment. Programs are available to help you through every stage of your recovery. However, it is helpful for you to know what you can expect to take place.

A Vicodin addiction is extremely powerful. Most people find that it takes a combination of treatments and therapies in order for recovery to work. For that reason, your treatment plan will be quite varied.

The first goal is to address the physical part of your addiction. Once you have done that, you’ll be ready to treat the psychological part.

Detoxing From Norco

The first step will be to detox your body and mind from this medication. Sometimes people don’t think that this step is necessary because they’re not afraid of withdrawal. You probably aren’t very familiar with how hard the symptoms of withdrawal can be to manage.

The truth is that they are bothersome, and there are some symptoms that can actually be dangerous. Taking the time to detox properly can help you get through this part of your recovery easier.

Some of the more common symptoms of Vicodin withdrawal include:

  • Feeling extremely anxious and agitated
  • Flu-like symptoms
  • Frequent yawning
  • Being unable to sleep
  • Hot or cold sweats
  • Aching muscles
  • Stomach cramps
  • A return of your physical pain
  • Digestive issues, such as diarrhea
  • Nausea and vomiting

Although it is rare, some people have a risk of seizures when stopping the use of Vicodin. You could also experience an increase in blood pressure or heart rate. Both of these are serious withdrawal symptoms and require medical monitoring. You may need medical intervention if you develop any of them.

It’s difficult to say how long it will take you to detox from Norco. However, some people begin to feel much better after several days. Symptoms usually tend to peak by about the third day, and then they start to improve. Even so, it’s common to experience some rebound symptoms. You may have more cravings or anxiety even after you’ve gone past the peak.

The good news is that in a controlled and monitored setting, symptoms can be controlled. Sometimes this is done with natural methods like diet and exercise. Other times, a medical detox approach is needed to control withdrawals. The right method will be discussed with you before you begin.

Medical tapering is often used to bring patients Norco withdrawal relief. It’s very important for you to not attempt to taper your medication on your own. You may do it too slowly, or too quickly.

When you’re tapered off Norco, you’ll be given lower dosages of the drug on a specific schedule. This allows your body to slowly adjust to having less of it. Experts believe that this method is much safer than simply stopping the drug cold turkey. It should lessen the severity of withdrawal. In fact, you may not even experience of the symptoms that are on the above list.

Rehab Programs for Those with Norco Addictions

Even though detoxification is important, this should not be the only step you take. Sometimes people wrongly assume that they only need to stop their cravings. After they do that, they can go on with their lives, free of their addictions. Unfortunately, this isn’t the way addiction recovery works at all.

You need to go to an excellent Norco rehab center. Many of them include opiate detox as a part of the services they offer. Once you’ve gone through that, you’ll be ready for the next phase of your treatment.

Anyone with an opioid addiction needs to go to a treatment program.

This will address the psychological side of your addiction. This is so important because there must be an underlying reason behind your dependence on this medication. Most people are surprised to discover that they became addicts for reasons other than being in pain.

There are different types of Norco rehab programs, and the right one will be discussed with you. You may be appropriate for either an outpatient or inpatient treatment program. Either way, you can be certain that you’ll get the help you need to recover from this dangerous addiction.

Quitting Lorcet HD on Your Own

Perhaps you’ve come to terms with the fact that you’re an addict. However, you’re not really sure that you need to go to rehab. A lot of Lorcet addicts feel the same way. Sometimes they’ll tell themselves and their loved ones that they’ll try rehab if they can’t quit alone. You need to know that this is taking a big risk.

More often that not, cold turkey quitters end up relapsing. They aren’t able to handle how difficult withdrawing from Lorcet can be, and they go back to using. This isn’t something you want to have happen to you. We’ll talk about why in just a moment.

How Long Will Withdrawal Last Without Detoxing First?

Without going through a professional detox, withdrawing from Vicodin is going to be quite difficult. It may also last quite a bit longer. In a medical or controlled setting, you’ll probably begin feeling better after about a week. For some people it can take even less time.

Without detoxing, your withdrawal symptoms could stretch on. They may last for as long as 2 weeks in some cases. You may continue to have rebound withdrawal symptoms for a month, or even longer.

There are a lot of risks associated with quitting this medication outside of a qualified rehab program. First of all, you are likely to get very sick. Norco is not a medication that you can simply “walk away from.” It’s a powerful opioid drug, and if you stop taking it abruptly, there will be consequences.

You run the risk of developing seizures, heart problems or other medical issues. You could become extremely depressed and paranoid. If you’re depressed, you may begin to consider suicide.

Most people who attempt to quit using Norco on their own aren’t able to do it. Their withdrawal symptoms are too much for them. They convince themselves that using some of their medication won’t hurt anything. They’ll just continue back with their recovery once they feel better.

This is known as having a relapse. Statistically speaking, relapses are very common among those with addictions. After all, addiction is a relapsing disease. That does not mean that they shouldn’t be avoided at all costs.

If you relapse, you’re only reinforcing the notion that you need this medication. You’re teaching yourself that without Norco, you’re not OK. If you have any hopes of recovery, a relapse will most likely only make your recovery more difficult.

An overdose is another major concern with opioid drugs. According to the CDC, more than 33,000 people in the U.S. died from overdosing on opioids. Almost half of them involved a prescription opioid like Verdrocet.

It’s important to know what can happen if you do overdose on your medication. Also, if you have a loved one who is addicted to Verdrocet, you need to know the signs of an overdose. They include:

  • Having breathing problems (breathing may eventually stop)
  • Becoming confused
  • Suffering from delirium
  • A decreased level of responsiveness
  • Nausea and vomiting
  • Feeling extremely sleepy
  • Very tiny pupils

An opioid overdose is a medical emergency. It’s so important to act quickly if you suspect one. There are medications that can be given to reverse an overdose. However, they only work if an overdose is caught quickly.

Norco Addiction Statistics and Your Chances of Recovering Successfully

Opioids like Norco are the most abused drugs in the world. If you are addicted, then you’re certainly not alone.

According to the National Institute on Drug Abuse:

2.1 Million

There are between 26.4 million and 36 million people abusing opioids worldwide. In the U.S. about 2.1 million people are addicted to opioid pain relievers. This number has been on the rise over the last several years.

207 Million

Since 1999, the number of unintentional overdoses from opioid painkillers has quadrupled. In 2013, there were about 207 million prescriptions written for opioid pain relievers in the U.S. The United States is responsible for consuming 100% of the world’s Vicodin.

306,000

There were close to 306,000 emergency room visits related to the abuse of opiates in 2008. This number is up from only 144,600 in 2004. By 2002, opioid analgesic poisoning was a more common cause of death than heroin or cocaine.

Your Aftercare Following Norco Rehabilitation

After you've gone through inpatient treatment for your Norco addiction, your recovery isn't over. Sometimes people assume that rehab will cure them of their addictions. Unfortunately, that's not the way that addiction works.

It takes more than a 30-day treatment program for you to be ready to go without treatment. This is why obtaining adequate follow-up care is so important for you.

There are different ways that you can approach your aftercare planning. Chances are that you'll talk about this will staff before rehab is over. They'll offer you their recommendations for what they feel you should do, based on your progress. In many cases, they'll recommend a step-down approach. This means going to an intensive outpatient treatment program after rehab is done.

An IOP allows you to stay at your house and attend several treatment appointments a week. You'll have plenty of time to follow up with staff and let them know how you're doing. You will be able to talk with a therapist and participate in group therapy meetings as well.

Sometimes sober living is recommended for those who need more care. If your home situation isn't safe, or if you're afraid you'll relapse, this is an option you may want to think about.

Finding the Best Norco Rehab Center Near You

It’s not easy to come to terms with the fact that you have an addiction to Norco. In your case, it’s possible that it was completely accidental. You took the medication to help with your pain, and you ended up addicted to it. You’d be surprised how often this happens.

It’s also possible that you have been abusing this opiate drug for fun. You liked how it made you feel, and it seemed to be fairly harmless. You’re now finding out that it really wasn’t harmless at all. In either case, you need the right kind of treatment if you’re going to recover successfully.

We can assist you with that process, here at Northpoint Recovery. Our goal is to provide our patients with the utmost in addiction treatment services. We take the time to carefully evaluate what you need during each step of the process. Your needs are unique to you, and they are always taken in consideration. You’ll receive a personalized treatment plan that will be detailed according to your treatment needs.

You may still have questions about Norco abuse, addiction or treatment. Do you need more information or direction on how to get started with getting help? If so, we’re here to assist you. Please contact us to learn more, or to schedule your intake appointment right away.

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Our admissions coordinators are here to help you get started with treatment the right way. They'll verify your health insurance, help set up travel arrangements, and make sure your transition into treatment is smooth and hassle-free.

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