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What Is Percocet? Addiction, Withdrawal Symptoms & Treatment

Percocet is a prescription medication that helps patients relieve symptoms of fever and severe pains. But is Percocet addictive? As per the National Institute on Drug Abuse, drug overdose took the lives of 106,999 individuals in the year 2021 alone. This number is alarming, as drug overdose can unnecessarily cut short the lives of healthy individuals.

More often than not, drug overdose is a result of drug addiction. Various factors contribute to drug addiction. Some of them can be eliminated easily. In this blog, we will discuss aspects related to Percocet addiction, like its symptoms, withdrawal, and treatment. We will also explore the answer to the question: ‘Is Percocet addictive?’

Why is Percocet addictive?

To understand whether or not Percocet is addictive, we need to understand what Percocet is.

Percocet is a prescription drug that helps relieve patients with fevers, chills, and extreme pain that may result from an injury, surgery, or any other medical condition. This drug is a godsend for those individuals who are suffering from chronic aches and are unable to lead an everyday life due to constant pain.

Percocet falls under Schedule II of the Controlled Substances Act. Being classified under Schedule II means that although Percocet has acceptable medical use, it has a high potential for misuse, dependence, and addiction. Due to the dangers of addiction, Percocet is only available to individuals through a valid prescription from a certified healthcare professional.

Unfortunately, many individuals believe that Percocet is an acceptable means of recreation. They abuse Percocet by using this drug for getting ‘high’ and for its euphoric effects rather than for its actual purpose. Percocet is a combination of oxycodone and acetaminophen. Due to its chemical composition, Percocet can have similar effects as heroin, which is an illegal narcotic drug.

As a result, several people abuse Percocet for its euphoric and hallucinatory effects. Therefore, Percocet is highly addictive. But one might wonder: ‘Why is Percocet addictive?’ The answer again lies in the combination of Percocet.

Oxycodone and acetaminophen can suppress brain neurotransmitters, manipulating the levels of dopamine, norepinephrine, and serotonin. It is no secret that these hormones are associated with feel-good factors and pleasure. As the levels of these hormones fluctuate, it impacts the brain’s ability to produce these hormones naturally. With prolonged use, the brain starts depending on Percocet to produce these hormones. This results in Percocet dependency and addiction.

Is Percocet addictive? What are the addiction and withdrawal symptoms?

Now that we have understood the answer to the questions: ‘Is Percocet addictive?’ and ‘Why is Percocet addictive?’, it is time we dwell further on Percocet addiction and understand the symptoms of Percocet addiction and withdrawal.

Understandably, misuse and abuse of any drug can lead to substance abuse disorder and addiction. When an individual is addicted to an opioid like Percocet, they will be tempted to use this drug even when they are fully aware of its negative consequences. The following factors can influence Percocet addiction:

  • Family History: People who have a family history of drug or substance abuse can fall prey to Percocet abuse disorder and addiction in their lives.
  • Biological Factors: Some people’s brains cannot produce natural hormones that make them feel good and bring them happiness, such as oxytocin, dopamine, serotonin, and norepinephrine. Once such individuals are administered Percocet, they are tempted to misuse it further in their lives to feel normal.
  • Psychological Factors: Stress is a part of everyone’s life, but some individuals do not cope healthily. As a result, people may abuse opioids like Percocet to feel euphoric, happy, and high.
  • Social or Environmental Factors: Some people grow up in environments and social settings where abusing drugs and substances is common. Such individuals are more prone to substance abuse disorders in their lives.

Percocet addiction can hamper an individual’s personal life, professional life, and social status. However, if an individual is addicted to Percocet, they will typically showcase the following behavioral symptoms:

  • Continuing to misuse Percocet even when they are fully aware that this drug is causing them harm
  • Misusing Percocet and taking it without a valid prescription from a certified healthcare professional
  • Withdrawing from the company of friends and family to use and abuse Percocet in isolation

Apart from the above-mentioned behavioral symptoms, an individual who is addicted to Percocet will experience the following physical symptoms:

  • Fluctuation in body weight
  • Inability to speak properly
  • Poor motor coordination
  • Breathlessness
  • Failure to comprehend their thoughts
  • Constipation or diarrhea
  • Lethargy and fatigue

Additionally, an individual who is addicted to Percocet may undergo psychosocial symptoms like:

  • Extreme mood swings
  • Aggression and agitation
  • Anger on irrelevant things

The worst thing about Percocet addiction is that when an individual is addicted to Percocet, they are stuck in the vicious cycle of using and abusing Percocet. This means that if an individual tries to stop using Percocet arbitrarily, they will experience nasty withdrawal symptoms.

What is the treatment of Percocet addiction?

Percocet addiction is a serious issue and should not be taken lightly. This addiction can ruin an individual’s quality of life. An individual who is addicted to Percocet can benefit from the following:

  • Group Therapy: This type of therapy is conducted in a group session. In group therapies, individuals feel a sense of belonging and are assured they are not alone.
  • Cognitive Behavioral Therapy: This type of therapy is phenomenal in helping patients understand the underlying cause of their addictions.
  • Medications: A certified medical professional will prescribe appropriate medicines to the patient to ease their withdrawal symptoms.

Frequently Asked Questions

1. Is Percocet addictive?

Almost every patient who is prescribed Percocet wonders: ‘Is Percocet addictive?’. The truth is that, yes, Percocet is highly addictive. This drug is an opioid that affects an individual’s mood and behavior.

2. Why is Percocet addictive?

Percocet is addictive because the chemical compounds oxycodone and acetaminophen can suppress the neurotransmitters of the brain and manipulate the levels of dopamine, norepinephrine, and serotonin in the brain. With prolonged usage, the brain will depend on Percocet to function normally.

3. Are Oxycodone and Percocet the same drug?

No, Percocet and Oxycodone are not the same drug. Although both are pain relievers, Percocet is the commercial name under which Oxycodone is sold. The chemical compound oxycodone is present in several medications that offer pain-relieving benefits to patients.


Percocet is an excellent drug that can relieve the symptoms of fever and chronic pain. But is Percocet addictive? The answer lies in the chemical composition of Percocet. This drug comprises oxycodone and acetaminophen, which are highly addictive. Percocet addiction can wreak havoc in the personal, professional, and social lives of an individual. However, once an individual is addicted to Percocet, they can overcome their addictions with the help of therapies and interventions.

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