Lortab is the brand name for hydrocodone and acetaminophen, used in the management of moderate to moderately severe pain. Lortab is a Schedule II Controlled Substance in the U.S., classified as such because of its potential to cause Lortab abuse and dependence. Lortab is structurally related to codeine and is approximately equal in strength to morphine in producing opiate-like effects. The first report that Lortab produced a noticeable euphoria and symptoms of abuse and addiction was published in 1923; the first report of Lortab addiction in the U.S. was published in 1961.
People abuse Lortab for a feeling of well-being and will often get multiple prescriptions from different doctors to support their habit. Lortab activates the brain’s reward systems. Lortab's promise of reward is very intense, causing the individual to crave the drug and to focus his or her activities around taking more of the drug. The ability of Lortab to strongly activate the brain's reward mechanism and its ability to chemically alter normal brain functioning is why Lortab has a high potential for abuse. Lortab also reduce's a person’s level of consciousness, harming the ability to think or be fully aware of present surroundings.
Every age group has been affected by the relative ease of Lortab availability and the perceived safety of this product by professionals. Sometimes seen as a "white-collar" addiction, Lortab abuse has increased among all ethnic and economic groups. DAWN data demographics suggest that the most likely Lortab abuser is a 20-40 yr old, white, female, who uses the drug because she is dependent or trying to commit suicide. However, Lortab-related deaths have been reported from every age grouping.
A person experiencing Lortab abuse problems will commonly exhibit the following behavior; going through the prescription too quickly, “doctor shopping,” lying about having lost a prescription, having a “favorite” narcotic medication preference and will not accept any other type of medication in lieu of Lortab. Friends and family members should be aware of the signs of Lortab abuse which can include a person stealing and lying,an unexplainable lack of money, antisocial behavior, changes in social circles and mood swings.
If you or someone you love is facing problems with Lortab abuse, remember there is help available. Addiction is a very serious issue that requires support and commitment and Lortab abuse treatment is the first step on the road to recovery.