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How Long Does Oxycodone Stay in Your System?

How Long Does Oxycodone Stay in Your System? | Just Believe Detox

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The presence of oxycodone can be detected in a person’s system for 24 hours via a blood test, 3-4 days using a urine analysis, between 1-4 days using a saliva screen, and up to three months by testing hair follicles.

The half-life of oxycodone, which is the length of time needed for the body to eliminate one half of the dose of a substance, is between 3.5-5.5 hours. Despite the body taking about one day to eliminate the oxycodone itself, the process of breaking down active ingredients results in byproducts known as metabolites, which can be detected for a more extended period using drug screens.

The duration of time oxycodone remains in a person’s system can be affected by a number of factors, such as the following:

  • Age
  • Sex (male or female)
  • Ethnicity
  • Height
  • Weight
  • Body mass index
  • Body fat percentage
  • Presence of food in GI tract
  • Kidney and liver function
  • Dosage consumed
  • Duration of use
  • Presence of other substances

Oxycodone Facts

As a prescription opioid, oxycodone is indicated for the treatment of short-term moderate to severe pain, often related to injury or surgery. It is also sometimes used for chronic pain related to cancer or end-of-life care.

Oxycodone can be used by itself (e.g., OxyContin) or in conjunction with another pain reliever, such as acetaminophen (e.g., Percocet). Oxycodone can be administered in several ways, most commonly by capsule, tablet, or liquid solution. When abused, it may be crushed and snorted or diluted and injected.

How Oxycodone Works

Opioids boost the production of endorphins, an action that helps to alter the user’s perception of pain. In addition to an analgesic effect, endorphins repress the production of GABA. GABA is a chemical messenger that inhibits the production of dopamine. Therefore, opioids also increase the amount of dopamine in the brain, which results in feelings of reward and euphoria. Unfortunately, these highly sought-after effects can cause users to become dependent upon and, ultimately, addicted to opioids.

Oxycodone Abuse and Addiction

Compared to other narcotics, oxycodone is moderately potent, yet it comes with a high potential for abuse. Oxycodone misuse may not be immediately noticeable because it can be obtained legitimately by prescription and isn’t often associated with drug paraphernalia such as spoons or needles.

For this reason, it is essential for loved ones of those who may be abusing oxycodone to be able to identify the acute effects of the drug, including the following:

  • Dilated pupils
  • Apathy
  • Drowsiness
  • Decreased attention span
  • Slowed or labored breathing
  • Flushed appearance

Oxycodone indeed has many therapeutic applications that continue to help people who experience pain. However, over the years, the risks associated with its use and abuse have become increasingly apparent.

How Long Does Oxycodone Stay in Your System? | Just Believe Detox

The euphoria produced by oxycodone often drives repeated use, which in turn increases the likelihood that the user will develop dependence. And, as with other opioids, oxycodone dependence can develop rapidly, an effect that contributes to its potential for abuse and addiction.

Side effects of short-term oxycodone abuse include the following:

  • Headaches
  • Dizziness or faintness
  • Tiredness, drowsiness
  • Confusion
  • Impaired concentration
  • Restlessness
  • Blurry vision
  • Stiff muscles
  • Constipation
  • Dry mouth
  • Stomach ache
  • Nausea and vomiting
  • Problems with urination
  • Slowed heart rate
  • Excessive sweating
  • Slurred speech
  • Poor motor coordination
  • Itchy skin and rash
  • Vivid dreams
  • Seizures
  • Low blood pressure
  • Respiratory depression

Side effects of long-term oxycodone abuse include:

  • Vein damage and scarring
  • Blot clots
  • Infections
  • Chronic aches and cramps
  • Menstrual irregularity
  • Reduced libido
  • Severe constipation
  • Insomnia
  • Depression
  • Anxiety
  • Swelling in limbs
  • Heart failure

Oxycodone Overdose

Perhaps the most significant threat associated with oxycodone abuse is its potential for overdose and death. Oxycodone, like other opioids, is a potent central nervous system (CNS) depressant.

For this reason, abuse can result in seizures, cardiac arrest, coma, and death. These outcomes are especially likely if oxycodone is used in combination with other substances, or if tablets are crushed and snorted or diluted and injected.

Warning signs of an oxycodone overdose include the following:

  • Extreme drowsiness
  • Labored or stopped breathing
  • Cold or clammy skin
  • Bluish lips and fingers (cyanosis)
  • Uncontrollable vomiting
  • Choking, gurgling sounds
  • Profound confusion
  • Impaired motor skills
  • Slurred speech
  • Limpness
  • Very low blood pressure
  • Perilously slow heart rate
  • Fainting or unconsciousness
  • Unresponsiveness or stupor
  • Seizures
  • Coma and death

Getting Help for Oxycodone Addiction

Addiction to oxycodone can be a severe and life-threatening condition, and those who are suffering are encouraged to seek professional help immediately. Treatment typically starts with detox, followed by a long-term, intensive program that includes several evidence-based services, such as psychotherapy, counseling, group support, aftercare planning, and more.

If you or a loved one is addicted to oxycodone, other drugs, or alcohol, contact us today! Just Believe Recovery employs caring addiction specialists who are dedicated to ensuring that our clients receive all the tools, education, and support they need to succeed at recovery and foster the healthy lives they deserve!

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