3 Myths About Lortab

3 Myths About LortabLortab is a prescription painkiller made with acetaminophen (Tylenol) and hydrocodone. When people experience pain, the central nervous system and pituitary gland produce endorphins that bind to opioid receptors, which fills the space between the brain’s nerve cells. This action relieves pain and produces euphoria, but the narcotic compounds in Lortab target the same receptors, and even normal dosage levels of it flood the system with chemicals that trigger more pronounced relief and euphoria. While the medication legitimately treats pain, abusing this drug can decrease the body’s production of endorphins as it alters dopamine transmissions in the mesolimbic pathway. These changes can lead to dependence and addiction, which means people will need the drug to function.

Misinformation about Lortab can cause people to underestimate the risks of drug abuse, and the following three myths affect many addictions and overdoses on this drug:

Myth One: Lortab Is Safer than Illicit Opiates

In 2000, the Health Affairs journal published a study on the effects of direct-to-consumer drug advertising, which began to surge in the 1990s. The authors argue that the advertising motivates an increase in drug prescribing while it also makes the public believe that advertised medications are safer than they actually are. For instance, taking Lortab as a pill balances its narcotic effects, but hydrocodone still comes from the same poppy sap as heroin and other illicit opiates. Some addicts even seek a heroin-like rush by injecting hydrocodone tablets that have been crushed and dissolved. In fact, the Drug Abuse Warning Network tracks drug-related emergency room visits, and their 2011 report highlights the risks of abusing opiates: in that year, there were 258,000 heroin-related emergencies compared to 488,000 for recreational opioid painkiller use. Likewise, the Journal of the American Medical Association states that in 2013 75% of all medication-related deaths involved opioid painkillers.

Myth Two: Lortab Can Be Taken with Other Substances

For most people, acquiring Lortab for recreational use can be difficult and expensive, so some users ration their supply by taking it with alcohol to enhance its intoxicating effects. Likewise, someone who wishes to come off a stimulant high may take Lortab for its depressant qualities. People may even create unintentional risks by taking painkillers while on antidepressants or a benzodiazepine for anxiety or sleep problems. These substances and others can interact dangerously with opioid painkillers, and their abuse can lead to overdose and respiratory collapse. Substances that depress the central nervous system increase their depressant effects exponentially when taken together, while stimulants increase risks of respiratory system exhaustion.

Myth Three: Lortab Is Necessary for Pain Management

Many people suffer from chronic pain and headaches, and Lortab can manage that discomfort, but you can manage pain without narcotic drugs. Pain clinics and many addiction treatment centers use the following holistic options to address pain:

  • Local anesthesia injections to relieve pain and swelling
  • Acupressure, acupuncture, massage and chiropractic procedures
  • Targeted exercise, physical therapy and specialized yoga
  • Hot tubs, hydrotherapies and low-impact aquatic activities
  • Alternating applications of heat and cold to the problem area
  • Electrical stimulation on nerve fibers associated with the pain

If painkiller abuse affects your life, then call our toll-free, 24 hour helpline now. Our admissions coordinators can answer your questions, discuss your treatment options and even check your health insurance policy for benefits. They can help you, so please call now.