Oxycodone addiction is a serious issue that has affected many states, including Alaska. Oxycodone is an opioid, a type of narcotic drug that is often used to treat severe pain after injuries or surgical procedures. But the drug is extremely addictive and easily misused, leading many people to need Alaska Oxycodone treatment to recover.
Oxycodone is the active ingredient in many different medications, including the notorious Oxycontin. This drug has the potential to cause physical dependence rapidly. If this occurs, Alaska oxycodone detox is usually needed to help the person overcome the excruciating withdrawal symptoms this drug can produce.
A person can tell that they’re becoming addicted to oxycodone when tolerance begins. Tolerance is a phenomenon that happens as the body becomes accustomed to an addictive substance the person is regularly consuming. This can happen in as little as a few days of regular use with oxycodone. Tolerance is noticeable when the person finds that the same dose of the drug is no longer as effective as it initially was. They may have the urge to take more of it to produce the same results. If they give in to this urge and take a larger dose, the drug will be more effective. But tolerance will worsen, and the cycle continues. If they continue to take the same dose, the drug will soon become ineffective, and they will need it just to feel normal.
This is known as dependence. Dependence means that the person’s body needs the drug to function properly. This is a direct result of tolerance. Because the body has tailored its chemistry to account for the drug’s continual presence, if the person stops taking it or misses a dose, they will become ill. This illness is not imaginary and is a physiological response to the imbalance created by discontinuing an addictive substance like oxycodone. At this point, a detox will likely be needed to help the person get off of it.
A detox is a facility that specializes in helping people get off drugs that cause dependence. They do this by helping people manage withdrawal symptoms and get through them without giving in to cravings and relapsing. This can be particularly difficult to do on one’s own, and in some cases, could be dangerous. Withdrawal symptoms can be so severe that they cause the person to become dehydrated due to nausea, vomiting, and diarrhea.
Detox is a first step to getting treatment but is not a replacement for rehabilitation. Detoxes only help people through withdrawal symptoms and do not provide the services needed to prevent relapse in the future. They are not a quick fix but are a step in a larger program of rehabilitation. Because of people’s tendency to use detoxes to get off drugs, only to relapse immediately upon discharge, most substance abuse treatment programs have on-site detox facilities. A person cannot simply use the facility for its detox services without enrolling in the whole program. Stand-alone detoxes exist in Alaska as well. But these facilities usually work closely with nearby treatment centers to make this transition easier. In this case, the patient should set up treatment before entering detox, so there’s one less thing to worry about while they are dealing with withdrawal symptoms and cravings. It also discourages them from changing their mind once they start feeling better, which is a common issue.
Different Types of Treatment for Oxycodone Addiction in Alaska
When selecting a treatment program for oxycodone addiction in Alaska, the options can be overwhelming. Avoid any program that doesn’t believe that people can completely recover from opioid addiction. This will be apparent by their use of replacement opioid medications to “treat” opioid abuse. This consists of putting the person on another opioid that may have a lower risk of overdose, usually for life. Sadly, this only worsens physical dependence, and if they ever want to get off these medications, the withdrawal symptoms are usually longer and can be even more intense. Patients are usually discouraged from getting off these drugs even years down the road and are told they will “relapse.” But since they never got off opioids, this makes no sense.
A much better option for many people is traditional substance abuse treatment. Traditional rehab is what most people imagine when they think of treatment. The programs average around one month in length and are usually based around the twelve-step model developed by Alcoholics Anonymous. They are usually inpatient, meaning the person lives and stays at the facility until they are discharged. Most traditional programs offer outpatient services so the person can continue to get support in recovery even after they are discharged.
Another excellent option for treating oxycodone addiction is holistic substance abuse treatment. Holistic programs intentionally avoid using any narcotics or medications that aren’t necessary for health. Instead, they use alternative approaches and natural remedies to help patients recover from addiction. This includes intensive counseling to address the underlying reasons why the person began using drugs to cope with life. This has an extremely beneficial effect of helping the person avoid relapses in the future by giving them new coping skills to use instead of resorting to drug abuse.
Alaska Oxycodone Possession Penalties
Alaska divides its controlled substances into six groups or “schedules” (IA through VIA) based on the potential for abuse and harm.
- Schedule IA drugs include opioid derivatives and are considered to have the highest degree of possible danger to users. This includes oxycodone when it is not prescribed to the person.
Alaska classifies all controlled substance crimes into five degrees. Misconduct in the first degree is the most serious.
Misconduct involving controlled substances like oxycodone is a 4th-degree violation and a Class C felony. Class C felony possession penalties pertain to:
- Possession of any amount of schedule IA controlled substances (this includes oxycodone.)
The penalty for a Class C felony is a prison term of up to 5 years and a fine of up to $50,000.
Alaska Oxycodone Statistics
In 2108, 60% of drug overdose deaths in Alaska involved opioids. This was a total of 68 cases.
- Deaths that involved prescription opioids or heroin remained relatively similar, with a respective 38 and 29 cases reported in 2018.
Alaska providers wrote 44.9 opioid prescriptions for every 100 persons in 2018. The average U.S. rate that same year was 51.4 prescriptions for every 100 persons.
Here is a list that will help you find residential drug treatment for Oxycodone abuse in Alaska. The list can be incomplete so please do not hesitate to contact one of our treatment specialists at 1-800-304-2219.