How is Oxycontin Used

The power painkiller OxyContin is being abused by more and more people across the nation. The heroin-like effects of the drug attract both legitimate and illegitimate users.

When used properly, OxyContin contains a time-release mechanism that spreads the release of the drug over a 12-hour period. The time-release mechanism can be circumvented by crushing the tablet and the drug can be used in one of the following ways:

  • The tablets can be chewed
  • The tablets can be crushed, then snorted like cocaine
  • The tablets can be crushed, dissolved in water, then injected like heroin

OxyContin abuse is spreading for a variety of reasons. First, the elevated opiate dosage makes it highly addictive. Second, in contrast to drugs such as cocaine or heroin that can be laced with other substances, with OxyContin you know how much of the drug you are getting; the dosage is consistent, so it is a dependable high. Finally, OxyContin is covered by most health insurance plans, so it is significantly cheaper than street drugs. (OxyContin has been referred to as "hillbilly heroin" or "the poor man's heroin.")