Signs, Symptoms & Effects of Teen Oxycodone Addiction

What is Teen Oxycodone Addiction?

Learn More About Teen Oxycodone Addiction

Oxycodone has a reputation for being two things: Some think of this medication as a highly effective solution for alleviating pain, while others view this medication as an enticing substance of abuse that brings on a powerful and very addictive high. Unfortunately, an alarming number of young people are now struggling with the abuse of this painkiller. If your teenager is grappling with an oxycodone abuse problem, then you’re probably wondering what you can do to help. Additionally, you may be unsure of how severe this sort of substance abuse problem is for your child, and are wanting to know more about this drug and the options available to you and your teen.

Oxycodone is classified as an opioid, which is the same category of drugs that includes heroin. This painkiller is, as stated, highly addictive and can be extremely difficult to defeat without professional help. Withdrawal symptoms, powerful cravings, and a compulsion to misuse oxycodone are very much part of the experience of being addicted to this medication, which is why it’s so important to act as your child’s ally and help him or her achieve a healthy, sober life.

Fortunately, there are many options for care that can help your teen win the war against an oxycodone addiction.


Statistics of Teen Oxycodone Addiction

The abuse of prescription opioids like oxycodone among teens in the United States remains a problem. Most young people get these substances from their own family members’ medicine cabinets and begin misusing them out of curiosity. According to the National Institute on Drug Abuse, or NIDA, adolescents who abuse oxycodone or other painkillers are more likely to engage in the abuse of other substances, with heroin being one of the most enticing because of the similar high that it produces. Lastly, it was found that the abuse of opioids like oxycodone is more prevalent than other forms of substance abuse among teens in this country.

Causes and Risks

Causes and Risk Factors of Teen Oxycodone Addiction

When you realized that your teen has been abusing oxycodone, you probably wondered why this happened. To understand what may have caused your child to abuse and become addicted to this prescription painkiller, read through the following and determine if these concepts explain the possible origins of your teen’s oxycodone abuse problem:

Genetic: Many people may not realize this, but increased risk for addiction can be inherited from one’s parents. Experts who have studied chemical dependency concluded that certain heritable genes can make a person more vulnerable to eventually struggling with the abuse of oxycodone and other drugs at some point in life. Given this fact, look at your teen’s family history and see if other relatives have grappled with addiction as well.

Environmental: Who your child associates with and what he or she is exposed to are two of the many ways that your child’s environment can affect whether or not he or she will abuse oxycodone. So, if his or her friends or family members engage in substance abuse, or if your teen has witnessed others use drugs like oxycodone, your child’s risk for doing the same is greater. Finally, if your teen doesn’t have proper skills for dealing with stress or lacks a strong system of support, then the chances he or she will abuse oxycodone go up if he or she can get this medication easily.

Risk Factors:

  • Suffering from medical conditions that are treated with opioids
  • Personal history of substance abuse
  • Having easy access to oxycodone
  • Family history of substance abuse and addiction
  • Family history of mental illness

Signs and Symptoms

Signs and Symptoms of Teen Oxycodone Addiction

Some teens go to great lengths to hide their abuse of oxycodone. Therefore, it may not be as apparent that this sort of substance abuse problem is part of your child’s life. However, if you pay attention to your child’s behavior and how he or she reacts to things, you can see if any of the following signs and symptoms of oxycodone abuse are present:

Behavioral symptoms:

  • Using oxycodone even when it’s dangerous to do so
  • Trying to steal oxycodone that has been prescribed to someone else
  • Lying about activities and whereabouts
  • Being unable to stop abusing oxycodone
  • Attempting to borrow or steal money to purchase oxycodone
  • Abusing oxycodone in favor of other once-important activities

Physical symptoms:

  • Slurred speech
  • Pupil constriction
  • Psychomotor agitation or retardation
  • Impaired coordination
  • Drowsiness
  • Disrupted sleep
  • Appetite changes

Cognitive symptoms:

  • Poor focus
  • Poor concentration
  • Memory problems
  • Impaired judgment

Psychosocial symptoms:

  • Social withdrawal
  • Paranoia
  • Drastic mood swings
  • Anxiety
  • Anger


Effects of Teen Oxycodone Addiction

Unfortunately, adolescents who abuse oxycodone rarely escape the perils that come with this sort of substance abuse problem. The below listed effects are those that can significantly affect your child’s present and future if you delay professional services to ameliorate this issue:

  • Suicidal ideation
  • Suicidal attempts
  • Social isolation
  • Self-harm
  • Organ failure
  • Onset of mental health concerns
  • Heart problems
  • Family discord
  • Disciplinary action at school
  • Damaged relationships with peers
  • Cognitive impairments
  • Arrest and incarceration
  • Academic failure

Co-Occurring Disorders

Co-Occurring Disorders & the Complexity of Teen Oxycodone Addiction

Teens who misuse oxycodone frequently do so in an attempt to mask untreated mental health condition symptoms. Conversely, some adolescents begin suffering from said symptoms after they’ve become addicted to oxycodone. Therefore, if you should seek professional treatment for your child, know that he or she will be assessed for and can receive supplemental services for his or her oxycodone abuse problem and the following disorders at the same time:

  • Posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD)
  • Other substance use disorders
  • Depressive disorders

Withdrawal & Overdose

Effects of Withdrawal and Overdose of Teen Oxycodone Addiction

Effects of oxycodone withdrawal: Because your teen’s body can become accustomed to the presence of oxycodone, he or she may experience withdrawal symptoms when not misusing this medication. If any of the following effects are impacting your child’s life, you should consider seeking effective addiction services for him or her:

  • Vomiting
  • Severe cramping
  • Nausea
  • Muscle pain
  • High body temperature
  • Excessive sweating
  • Diarrhea
  • Depression
  • Bone pain
  • Anxiety
  • Agitation

Effects of oxycodone overdose: As a parent or guardian of a teen who abuses oxycodone, you must be mindful of that fact that your child is at risk for an overdose. An overdose on oxycodone can manifest in the form of the following effects, which should trigger you to call for emergency medical help in order to prevent a grave outcome:

  • Unconsciousness
  • Slurred speech
  • Seizure
  • Problems breathing
  • Extreme confusion
  • disorientation
  • Cold and/or clammy skin
  • Bluish coloration near lips and fingertips
Our Client Experience

I don't know how he did it, but my son was able to steal Oxycodone prescriptions to curb his addiction. Only Greenleaf was able to provide the comprehensive treatment to allow my son to achieve sobriety and take back his life.

– Martha L.
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