Opiate Comparison: Get to Know the Dangers of Oxycodone and Hydrocodone

There are many different types of substances that are problematic within the realm of addiction. Every single day, people are developing addictions to various substances and this adds to the millions that are already struggling. Some categories of substances have tended to be larger problems than others when it comes to addiction. One of the most common and well-known categories of substances regarding this is opiates. Some opiates are illicit and are only used by people to get high, such as heroin. Others are medications that have the valuable purpose within the medical realm of mitigating pain from various conditions and ailments. They are extremely effective in this avenue, but they can also be highly addictive and are one of the largest contributing factors in the current addiction epidemic. Two of the most highly abused prescription opioids are Hydrocodone and Oxycodone.

The abuse of prescription opiates has greatly increased over the past couple decades and Hydrocodone and Oxycodone are the substance of choice of around 75% of opioid-dependent individuals. When it comes to a comparison between these two substances, Oxycodone tends to be preferred by a large number of people. So, what exactly makes Oxycodone more preferable for many people? Well, we can compare these two substances and take a look at that.


Oxycodone is described as a semi-synthetic opioid that is generally prescribed to address moderate to severe pain. It is prescribed in a standalone form and also in combination with other substances to create more effective medications, such as with Acetaminophen. This drug is frequently abused because of the euphoria that it brings about during use. Oxycodone has been used for pain management since around 1916. It is available in both regular and controlled-release tablets. These controlled-release tablets came later partly as an attempt to reduce the abuse of Oxycodone. It is typically prescribed for managing short-term pain, but it can also be used for chronic pain. Oxycodone is also the active ingredient in other common medications, such as Percocet and OxyContin.


Of course, Hydrocodone is also prescribed as a medication for managing pain, and it is the active ingredient in Norco and Vicodin. It is also part of the medication Lortab, which combines it with Acetaminophen. This medication is available in both tablet and liquid forms, with the latter often being called Lortab elixir. Just like Oxycodone, it is largely abused because of the euphoria it can produce.

Both of these substances act upon the central nervous system by basically suppressing it, which prevents pain signals from being sent to the brain. While both of these substances have some variation, they are also extremely similar, especially in their dangers. Both of these medications can be highly addictive and can turn into a dependency for an individual. Each of them can also bring about overdose when taken in too large of doses, and an individual should receive emergency medical care in any case of this. They also have similar side effects, such as:

  • Nausea
  • Vomiting
  • Itchiness
  • Dizziness
  • Sweating
  • Dry Mouth
  • Constipation
  • Respiratory Depression

One of the noticeable differences between these two regarding side effects is that Hydrocodone tends to be more likely to result in constipation.

Which is Better: Oxycodone or Hydrocodone?

One may wonder which is better, oxycodone or hydrocodone? Well, regarding pain management, both of these medications are around the same level. They both also tend to take effect within the same time frame. In other words, the best medication for each person’s pain comes down to a conversation with their doctor.

If you or a loved one are seeking help with a drug or alcohol addiction, give Best Drug Rehabilitation a call today.

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