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What is Percocet? Drug Facts, Side Effects, Abuse, And More

The question: ‘How addictive is Percocet?’ crosses everyone’s mind when they are prescribed this drug. For the uninitiated, Percocet is a prescription drug that gained popularity in the 1970s. This drug is helpful as a painkiller for mild to moderate pain.

Percocet is a combination of oxycodone and acetaminophen, which falls under the category of opioids. But how addictive is Percocet? In this blog, we will discuss more about this drug, its side effects, and the consequences of Percocet abuse.

What is Percocet?

how addictive is Percocet

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Before understanding how addictive is Percocet, we must first understand more about this drug.

Percocet is a prescription medicine that helps reduce fever symptoms and moderate to severe pain. This drug falls under the category of opioids. This means that there is a high chance of individuals becoming addicted to this drug.

According to the United States National Library of Medicine, oxycodone, acetaminophen, and Percocet are efficient fever and pain relievers.

However, due to the presence of oxycodone, individuals who take Percocet arbitrarily or abuse Percocet can develop opioid addiction. Additionally, the acetaminophen chemical compound in Percocet can suppress the brain’s neurotransmitters. This helps in stopping the brain from interpreting the pain signals. As a result, an individual can feel relief from moderate to severe pain.

Since Percocet manipulates and suppresses the neurotransmitters of the brain, it is a highly addictive drug. Due to its addictive nature, Percocet is classified under Schedule II of the Controlled Substances Act. Drugs that fall under Schedule II are those drugs that are helpful in the field of medicine but also pose a high risk of abuse, tolerance, dependence, and addiction.

Therefore, like other drugs that fall under Schedule II, Percocet also is only available by a valid prescription from a certified healthcare professional. In the next section of this blog, we will discuss how addictive Percocet is.

How addictive is Percocet?

Percocet is a Schedule II

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We have understood in the previous section that Percocet is a Schedule II classified drug and is highly addictive. But how addictive is Percocet?

The severity of the question ‘How addictive is Percocet?’ can be answered by the statistics of the United States opioid epidemic.

In reality, Percocet can induce such effects in an individual’s brain that are similar to heroin. Due to its chemical combination, Percocet can make a person feel ‘high,’ light-headed, and euphoric. There is no doubt that Percocet is an excellent painkiller. However, due to its pain-relieving capabilities and its euphoric effects, an individual might be tempted to abuse Percocet.

When an individual abuses Percocet, they can develop a tolerance to it. Tolerance is a phenomenon in which an individual requires high doses of Percocet to feel the same effect, as they will no longer feel the pain-relieving effects of a low dose of this drug. This kickstarts the vicious cycle of Percocet dependency and addiction.

An individual who is addicted to Percocet will show the following symptoms:

  • Obtaining fake or forged prescriptions to buy Percocet
  • Going to different doctors to obtain prescriptions for Percocet
  • Buying Percocet without a prescription at higher rates
  • Stealing Percocet from other patients
  • Stealing prescriptions to buy Percocet
  • Stealing money to buy Percocet

The worst part about Percocet addiction is that it opens gateways to other types of addictions and substance abuse disorders. This is because once an individual gets a taste of the euphoric effects of substances, they may be tempted to experiment with using other types of opioids to experience the same results.

How addictive is Percocet in terms of side effects and causes of abuse?

Now that we have found an answer to the question: ‘How addictive is Percocet?’, let us understand its side effects and causes of Percocet addiction.

Like any other type of opioid, Percocet also comes with a lot of side effects. People initially misuse Percocet due to its euphoric effects. Some individuals also feel calm and relaxed after abusing Percocet. As a result, individuals abuse Percocet in the hope of escaping the daily stress and negative emotions of their lives.

Additionally, there might be some people who unknowingly become addicted to Percocet as a result of self-medication. People who are looking for relief from chronic pain and fever use Percocet to feel relieved from these symptoms. However, this can lead to dependence on Percocet.

Percocet dependence is a phenomenon where an individual will not be able to function without this drug in the system. Percocet dependence often leads to Percocet addiction.

Lastly, some people deliberately abuse Percocet because they are aware of its euphoric effects. They want a quick solution to escape from anxiety, stress, and depression. As a result, they use this drug to feel heightened pleasure. This can also lead to Percocet addiction and can hamper the mental health of an individual as well.

Abusing Percocet comes with several side effects like:

  • Fever, chills, perspiration and runny nose
  • Soreness of muscles and muscle spasms
  • Aggression and agitation
  • Anxiety disorder and panic attacks
  • Insomnia
  • Nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, and cramps
  • Lethargy
  • Increase in blood pressure and heart rate
  • Mood swings and cravings for higher doses of this drug

Adhering to the dosage prescribed by a doctor can easily avoid the unpleasant side effects of this drug. Percocet will not harm an individual if they are strict about following their doctor’s advice.

Frequently Asked Questions

1. What is Percocet?

Percocet is a prescription drug that helps in reducing fever and severe pain in individuals. However, since this drug is a combination of oxycodone and acetaminophen, this drug is highly addictive.

2. How addictive is Percocet?

Percocet is classified under Schedule II of the Controlled Substances Act of the United States. This means that Percocet is highly addictive and can produce similar effects as narcotics like heroin.

3. Why is Percocet addiction dangerous?

Percocet addiction is dangerous as it can lead to health complications. Percocet impacts an individual’s breath and can lead to choking. An individual can also fall into a coma due to a Percocet overdose.


If you were wondering ‘How addictive is Percocet?’ before clicking on this blog, we hope that now you have found an answer. Percocet addiction can be treated with the help of therapies, interventions, and medications. A certified medical professional can detect withdrawal symptoms early and prescribe medicines accordingly.

Moreso, inpatient rehabilitation facilities can also help in overcoming Percocet addiction. These facilities detox and track the vitals of the patients so that they can quit Percocet abuse in a safe environment.

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