Short-term side effects
Some of the common side effects of the drug at the initial stage of its usage are dizziness, drowsiness, vomiting, nausea, constipation and itching, sweating, dry mouth, loss of appetite, weakness, and headache. There may be a decrease in few of these side effects with continued use of OxyContin. You will need medical help if you experience side effects such as feeling confused, your breathing slows down or any other unusual symptoms such as vision changes, difficulty in urinating, mood swings, agitation, and hallucinations. Respiratory depression is one of the most severe short-term side effects of this drug. It slows down breathing that can lead to coma or even prove fatal. Some rare but equally serious side effects such as severe abdominal pain, change in the amount of urine passed, and seizures may also occur. Inform your doctor immediately of these side effects if any. Older persons are more sensitive to this drug and are more prone to side effects such as shallow or slow breathing and drowsiness.
Use of this drug can make you sleepy hence, it is best to avoid driving, participating in possibly dangerous activities or operating heavy machinery while administering this drug. Drinking alcohol along with it can result in dangerous side effects. OxyContin abusers enjoy a rush of euphoria very similar to drugs such as heroin when they remove the sustained-release coating to get a rapid release of the medication. Using a tablet that is broken, dissolved, crushed, or chewed can lead to the entire 12-hour dosage being absorbed into your body all at once. This is dangerous as it results in overdosing and possible death.
Long-term side effects
There is an increased risk of addiction and abuse while administering OxyContin. Addiction to this drug is a long-term side effect, which is almost impossible to recover from without the professional help of any detox or rehab program. Another side effect is the increased tolerance one develops towards the drug due to prolonged usage; which results in having to administer higher doses to get the desired initial effect. Besides being emotionally addictive, it is physically addictive as well. The physical addiction to the drug results in intense and painful withdrawal symptoms upon discontinuation of its use.
It should be kept it out of the reach of children, as an accidental overdose by a child may result in death. Since OxyContin is a prescription narcotic painkiller, it is illegal and potentially dangerous to share, sell, or give away this drug without a prescription. Administering this drug in conjunction with other medications especially if they cause drowsiness can lead to dangerous side effects. It is not recommended for use during pregnancy as it may cause harm to the unborn baby or while breast-feeding as it may pass through milk causing adverse effect on the nursing baby. Infants born to mothers who have used it for a long time may experience withdrawal symptoms such as persistent or abnormal crying, vomiting, or diarrhea.