How Lortab Abuse Complicates Mental Health Issues

Lortab is combination of acetaminophen and hydrocodone. Because hydrocodone is an opioid with mood-altering effects, it is often abused. Mental health issues can both contribute to the abuse of Lortab and arise from it. Some people take the drug with a prescription for pain, but an underlying mental health condition may contribute to cravings for the drug.

Depression, Anxiety and Lortab Use

A 2009 study published in the journal General Hospital Psychiatry examined the medical records of chronic pain patients. Researchers determined that patients with a history of depression received prescriptions for opioid drugs like Lortab at three times the rate of other patients. There are a number of possible explanations for these findings, including that depression amplifies pain. However, it is also possible that depressed patients use opioids to treat their depressive symptoms.

The National Drug Strategy (NDS) ofAustralianotes that depression is common among those who abuse opioids like Lortab. They report that heavier use of the drug is associated with more severe depression. They also note that people with anxiety disorders are more likely to use opioids than are others, and people suffering from anxiety report higher rates of opioid dependence.

Treatment for Lortab Addiction and a Mental Health Condition

When people suffer from both Lortab addiction and a mental health issue, integrated treatment is needed that addresses all conditions. Clinicians will determine whether the mental health condition arose from drug use or from a different etiology. Ongoing assessment during the treatment process is essential.

Medication management is also important for those with co-occurring addiction and mental health issues. Because opioids are sedatives, their overdose risk is magnified when they are combined with other sedatives. For this reason, the NDS recommends that if antidepressants are used in those with a history of opioid dependence, that SSRIs be used instead of tricyclic medications. They report that the medication naltrexone improves depression and reduces the illicit consumption of opioids. Most anti-anxiety medications are also sedatives and the same cautions apply for combining sedating drugs.

How to Recover from Lortab Addiction and Mental Health Issues

If you or a loved one suffers from both a Lortab addiction and a mental health condition, we can help you find treatment that addresses all your needs. Our counselors are available 24 hours a day at our toll-free helpline to answer your questions and help you find a treatment program that is right for you. They can also check your insurance coverage for you if you wish, at no cost or obligation. We are available right now to help you find your path to recovery, so call now and take the first step toward recovery.