Chat with us, powered by LiveChat

Medically Reviewed

Medically reviewed by Jennifer Strong, LMHC

Written by Tampa Bay Recovery staff
Updated on August 13, 2023


Call Us Now!

Rehab in St. Petersburg

It’s time to put your health first. Call us right now to learn how we can help you break the cycle of addiction for good and create a new life of possibility

Did you start taking hydrocodone to help ease severe pain and then find yourself addicted to it? You’re not alone because this type of drug causes many people to develop a substance use disorder. Tampa Bay Recovery employs an experienced staff skilled at helping people overcome the abuse of pain medications. Our hydrocodone addiction treatment program includes the use of several types of therapies that teach people to live without abusing drugs.

What is Hydrocodone?

Hydrocodone is a drug available by prescription only that is used to treat severe pain. It is recommended for people who take pain medication continuously for a serious condition, rather than on an as-needed basis. People who use it generally do not respond well to weaker pain meds. Hydrocodone is sold under brand names like Vicodin, Lortab, Lorcet-HD, Hycodan, and Vicoprofen. This drug is classified as an opiate analgesic and works by changing how a person’s nervous system and brain react to pain. Because it is an opiate, it carries an elevated risk of someone developing an addiction to it. When this happens, the person will need to seek hydrocodone addiction treatment from a professional facility.


Tour Our Drug Rehab in Tampa Bay

Is Hydrocodone Addictive?

Hydrocodone is classified as a Schedule II drug, which means it holds a “high potential for abuse which may lead to severe psychological or physical dependence”.  Some people begin to take this medication under a doctor’s supervision but then develop a reliance on it that grows out of control. Others may obtain the medication illegally and use it as a way to get high or numb out or to treat their own pain. Either way, an addiction can happen and requires working with a facility to help the person overcome their addiction.

Understanding Hydrocodone Addiction

When someone takes hydrocodone after surgery, a dental procedure, or another type of medical event, it may seem like taking just another prescription medication. However, this type of drug can quickly become habit-forming. A person’s body develops a reliance on hydrocode to feel pain-free and it can be difficult for the person to go off it after its recommended short-term usage. In fact, a person increases their risk of developing an addiction after just a week of usage. This makes it vital that the doctor and patient discuss exactly how long the drug should be taken and at what dosage. 

Ready to Escape Addiction? Let's get Started

Tampa Bay Recovery Center is a premier leader in the provision of addiction treatment services. If you or someone you love is in need of professional care to address a substance use disorder, reach out to us right now at (813) 733-8774 to speak with an admissions specialist who can get you started on the road to recovery.

Hydrocodone vs Oxycodone

Like hydrocodone, oxycodone (brand name OxyContin) is a Schedule II opioid drug prescribed to treat pain. Taken at the same dosage, oxycodone is more potent than hydrocodone. The only other notable difference is in the side effects each drug may produce. For example, hydrocodone is more likely to cause constipation and other gastrointestinal issues. Both drugs carry the risk of developing an addiction to them.

Signs and Symptoms of Hydrocodone Addiction

When someone is in need of hydrocodone addiction treatment, signs and symptoms will appear. Physical signs include:

  • Cognitive difficulties
  • Blurry vision
  • Itchy skin
  • A constant feeling of being high
  • Constipation
  • Diarrhea
  • Dry mouth
  • Nausea and vomiting
  • Nodding on and off
  • Slowed heart rate
  • Slowed breathing
  • Slurred speech
  • Seizures

Psychological symptoms of addiction can include depression, anxiety, and moodiness.

Overcome Addiction with evidence-based, expert care.

How Does Hydrocodone Addiction Treatment Work?

While being lost in addiction to hydrocodone feels chaotic and out of control, treatment provides a structured plan that helps people stop abusing this drug. Hydrocodone addiction treatment begins with going to detox. This first step provides medical and psychological support to help people get through their first drug-free days safely. 

After detox, a person has two choices for the next step in treatment. Some transition to a residential facility where they live for 30 days or more. Others move on to outpatient care that offers several levels of treatment. People in outpatient rehab can live in their homes or a sober living facility and travel to the facility for their therapy sessions. At all levels of treatment, people are provided with access to different types of therapy designed to help them address the reasons behind their addiction and learn to avoid relapsing.

Side Effects of Hydrocodone Addiction

Someone addicted to hydrocodone may develop serious physical effects on their body. This includes:

  • Liver damage
  • Allergic reactions on the skin
  • Bowel obstruction from long-term constipation
  • Slow heart rate and breathing
  • Losing consciousness
  • Coma
  • Overdose
  • Hallucinations
  • Depression
  • Anxiety

While side effects from abusing hydrocodone can happen to anyone, the chances increase if the person drinks alcohol, or takes prescription or non-prescription drugs that contain alcohol.

Signs and Symptoms of Hydrocodone Overdose

It is possible to overdose on hydrocodone, either because a person takes more than their prescribed dosage on purpose or they lose track of how much they have taken. Signs of a hydrocodone overdose include:

  • Slow heart rate
  • Narrow or widened pupils
  • Weakness
  • Extremely tired
  • Losing consciousness
  • Cold, clammy skin

People who consume alcohol, other prescription drugs, or street drugs while using hydrocodone put themselves at an increased risk of overdosing.

Begin Treatment for Hydrocodone Addiction Today

Hydrocodone provides tremendous pain relief for many people who do not develop an addiction to it. However, substance use disorders are an illness and can happen to anyone. If you need help to stop abusing hydrocodone, we know what to do. Tampa Bay Recovery created a hydrocodone addiction treatment program that includes multiple approaches to overcoming reliance on pain medications. We provide skilled addiction specialist therapists to help you face your problem head-on and leave drug abuse behind. Our staff also provides access to Medication-Assisted Treatment which includes FDA-approved medications that help ease withdrawal symptoms so you do not suffer needlessly during recovery.

Would you like to talk to a staff member about getting effective treatment for addiction? Visit our admissions page now for more information.

Our Philosophy

We believe that getting help for substance use disorders is about much more than just trying to get through another day of not drinking or using drugs. Our mission is to help people reclaim their lives by teaching them how to effectively deal with the stress, trauma, and anxiety that contribute to their addictions. 

Meet Our Team

Our staff has over 60 years of combined experience in treating behavioral health disorders. Our compassionate and empathetic approach has helped hundreds.