Ultimate Guide on Teen OxyContin Abuse Treatment

Table of Contents

This Article Covers the Following:

  • Definition of OxyContin and how it is abused
  • Signs, symptoms, risks, and consequences of OxyContin addiction
  • Definition, types, and process of teen residential treatment therapy
  • Preparation for teen residential treatment therapy
  • Choosing a teen residential treatment center
  • What next after residential treatment therapy
  • OxyContin withdrawal signs

In their desire to experiment, most adolescents use OxyContin for its euphoric and relaxation effects, not knowing that repeated misuse can lead to psychological dependency, OxyContin addiction, and severe withdrawals. OxyContin addiction is a scourge to teens and, by extension, parents nationwide. Since we understand parents’ pain and fears when children become addicted to prescription medications like OxyContin, we will discuss a potential solution – teen residential treatment therapy. This inpatient treatment program for teen addiction is conducted in specialized centers like Key Healthcare. Let’s help you understand what OxyContin is, how it works, and what happens afterwards.

What is OxyContin?

OxyContin, officially known as oxycodone hydrochloride, is a powerful painkiller used to treat moderate to severe pain. It is an opioid analgesic that acts on the opioid receptors in the central nervous system, blocking pain messages from reaching the brain.

How Is OxyContin Abused?

Teenagers abusing OxyCodone pills chew or crush the tablets to bypass the drug’s controlled-release feature. They can also snort the crushed tablets, dissolve them in water or inject the solution into their bloodstream.

OxyContin abuse rates are quite high, with reports indicating that at least 2.4% of 12th graders in the United States used OxyContin in 2019 alone. The United States Department of Justice also holds that over 13 million Americans, including children as young as 12, abuse OxyContin.

Signs and Symptoms of Teen OxyContin Addiction

OxyContin addiction can manifest physically, behaviorally, psychologically, and in one’s moods.

Mood symptoms: Delight, anxiety, panic attacks, depression, euphoria

Physical symptoms: Abdominal pain, coma, death, dizziness, light-headedness, heart attack, sweating, appetite loss, itching, hypotension, respiratory depression, and cardiovascular problems

Psychological symptoms: Anxiety, addiction, panic attacks, hallucinations, paranoia, worsening mental illness, delusions

Behavioral symptoms: Teen risky behaviors, forging OxyContin prescriptions, poor academic performance, social isolation in teens, neglecting personal responsibilities, poor occupational functioning, neglecting personal responsibilities, robbing pharmacies, teenager lying, addicted to stealing, crushing/chewing tablets, and borrowing pills from family and friends.

Risks and Consequences of Teen OxyContin Addiction

Risk Factors

  • Environmental factors – Teenagers from troubled homes are more likely to use opioids such as OxyContin as a coping mechanism. The same also applies to those who suffered trauma growing up.
  • Genetics – Teenagers from families with a history of prescription pills and other substance abuse are more vulnerable to OxyContin addiction because of some inherited genes.
  • Psychological factors – Individuals with undiagnosed mental health disorders such as teen depression and anxiety may try to self-medicate with OxyContin to counter related symptoms leading to addiction.
  • Biological factors – Individuals with chronic or ongoing pain are more likely to abuse OxyContin leading to tolerance and addiction.

Common consequences of OxyContin addiction include legal problems, incarceration, addiction, coma, death, respiratory depression, circulatory collapse, divorce, domestic abuse, worsening mental and emotional health, risk-taking behaviors consequences, and cold, clammy skin.

Teen Rehab for OxyContin Addiction Treatment: An Overview

What is Teen Residential Treatment Therapy?

Residential treatment therapy is a treatment option for teen substance use disorder conducted in specialized facilities that care for and support teenagers round-the-clock. Key Healthcare offer long-term mental health care (45-60 days) for adolescents with serious substance abuse and mental health disorders, allowing them to lead healthy, happy lives and live up to their full potential.

Types of Teen Residential Treatment Therapy

Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT)

Despite being originally meant for depression, cognitive behavioral therapy for teens has proven highly efficient in treating teen substance use disorders. It is premised on the idea that a connection exists between thoughts, feelings, and behavior; therefore, teenagers can redefine their habits by changing their thoughts.

This highly structured behavioral therapy demands that the teenager and therapists set specific goals and work towards achieving them in every session. It can be administered in individual or group sessions and normally lasts 12-20 weeks. Benefits include emotion regulation, relationship building, negative behavior reduction, and problem-solving.

Motivational Interviewing

Motivational interviewing is a counseling approach for teenagers with mixed feelings about treatment. This brief intervention shows teenagers they are not alone in their struggles and that several resources can help them overcome their lack of motivation or whatever they are going through. It also makes them more confident in their self-efficacy, pushing them to explore their desire for change and begin the change process.

Dialectical Behavior Therapy (DBT)

DBT for teens teaches teenagers how to manage their emotions, develop healthier coping skills and deal with difficult situations. Unlike cognitive behavior therapy, it believes that two opposing thoughts or ideas (which can be both true) can co-exist. It demands that teenagers come to terms with the abovementioned idea and learn to accept who they are as they work on their behavior.

At Key Healthcare, we deliver dialectical behavior therapy through individual therapy sessions, group skills training, and phone coaching to ensure that teenagers get the best possible help.

Individual Therapy

Teen individual therapy in Los Angeles is administered through one-on-one meetings with licensed therapists. Most sessions last 50-60 minutes, giving teenagers a supportive and non-judgemental environment to discuss issues such as OxyContin addiction. The therapist’s role is to help them understand their feelings and thought patterns, identify underlying issues and develop healthy coping mechanisms and strategies.

At Key Healthcare, we offer teen acceptance and commitment therapy during these sessions to help teenagers accept what they cannot control and commit to changing areas under their control.

Family Therapy

Family therapy for teens is an evidence-based treatment model focusing on teenagers and their family members or significant others.

At Key Healthcare, we offer both functional family therapy and family behavior therapy, which help in successful treatment and recovery. Our therapists will work with you, the teenager undergoing treatment, and other family members to understand and resolve underlying problems within the family setting.

You will explore issues causing teen distress, develop healthier relationships and learn new communication skills. Benefits arising from regular family therapy sessions include improved family relationships, better communication, development of healthier boundaries, clarified family roles, increased empathy, and improved conflict resolution skills.

Goals of Teen Residential Treatment Therapy

  • To offer a safe environment where teenagers can learn the truth about their addiction
  • To provide adolescents with the right life skills and tools for addiction recovery
  • To help teenagers avoid relapsing by fighting triggers and cravings
  • To help teenagers make better life decisions
  • To build teenager’s self-worth
  • To encourage family therapy
  • To help teenagers attain their goals through the right interventions

Benefits of Teen Residential Treatment Therapy for Teen OxyContin Addiction

  • It eliminates triggers, allowing teenagers to focus on recovery
  • Teenagers can access round-the-clock professional support and care
  • It offers the best long-term recovery outcomes
  • It is conducted in a safe and supportive environment
  • Teenagers benefit from several therapy and treatment options, including a supervised medical detox.
  • It allows teenagers to set and accomplish goals as well as build new habits
  • Most programs offer aftercare programs to help teenagers stay in recovery

The Residential Treatment Therapy Process

Residential treatment is a structured teen addiction treatment approach that requires detoxification, behavioral therapy, group therapy, support groups, and medical treatment. Let’s walk you through how addiction experts help teenagers overcome their OxyContin addiction in these facilities:

Detoxification Process for Teen OxyContin Addiction

The first process in teen OxyContin addiction treatment is detoxification, which flushes drug traces from the teen’s body and system.

At Key Healthcare, we offer supervised medical detox for teens addicted to OxyContin. We have highly trained and skilled medical professionals to help ease withdrawal symptoms, giving your teenager an easy time adjusting to treatment.

Behavioral Therapy for Teen OxyContin Addiction

Behavioral therapy for teen OxyContin focuses on changing teenagers’ behaviors around substance misuse or abuse. It also teaches life skills that will help teenagers in recovery cope with triggers and cravings.

At Key Healthcare, we offer cognitive behavioral therapy, dialectical behavioral therapy, family therapy, and motivational interviewing as part of our behavioral teen therapy programs.

Group Therapy and Support Groups for Teen OxyContin Addiction

Teen group therapy is administered to groups of eight to nine teens facing similar issues such as OxyContin addiction. It offers a safe and supportive space to cope with issues, grow resilience, become more self-aware, and learn important skills such as conflict resolution, communication, and problem-solving.

We have professional therapists in our facilities that moderate group sessions, encouraging teenagers to share their perspectives and stories and take up resources and tools that can help them positively change their lives. Teenagers who undergo group therapy during and after treatment report feeling less alone, increased self-awareness, improved confidence, better coping skills, improved social skills, and greater empathy.

Parents should also help teenagers find excellent support groups in their recovery journey to help them maintain sobriety and stick to their recovery goals. Common examples include 12-Step groups (such as Narcotics Anonymous, SMART Recovery, and Celebrate Recovery) and Jewish, Alcoholics, Chemically Dependent Persons, and Significant Others (JSACs)

Medical Treatments for Teen OxyCodone Addiction

Oxycodone is a type of opioid prescription. Habitual use can rewire the brain’s risk and reward neural pathways, leading to dependency and, ultimately, full-blown addiction. Discontinuing usage can lead to severe physical and psychological withdrawal symptoms as the body attempts to rid itself of toxins and revert to its natural state. Doctors and addiction experts must administer medicines to treat withdrawal symptoms and manage intense psychological cravings.

Common medications used to treat OxyCodone addiction include buprenorphine, naltrexone, and methadone. Note that the three are FDA-approved drugs that must be cautiously used since uncontrolled usage can lead to overdose or addiction.

Preparing for Teen Residential Treatment Therapy

Assessment and Evaluation for Teen OxyContin Addiction

Assessment and evaluation help treatment teams define the nature of your teenager’s addiction, determine a diagnosis, and develop the right treatment programs for them. Our goal at Key Healthcare is to get to know your teenager to find a treatment program that suits them.

Therefore, we expect parents to complete an in-depth assessment of their child and visit our facilities as part of our teen assessment and evaluation program. Examples of assessment questions include their current OxyContin use, treatment history (if any), patterns of behavior or symptoms, health history, and the effects of the addiction on the life of the teenager and the entire family.

Diagnosing Teen OxyContin Addiction

On top of the in-depth assessment done during OxyContin assessment and evaluation, doctors and clinicians may also test a sample of the teenager’s hair, saliva, blood, sweat, or urine to detect opioid misuse.

There may also be face-to-face interviews where addiction experts ask standard, open-ended questions to help make the right diagnosis. To confirm an opioid use disorder, the teenager should have shown at least two of the following symptoms within 12 months:

  • Taking OxyContin pills in larger amounts or for a longer duration than expected
  • Unsuccessful efforts/ persistent desire to stop or control OxyContin usage
  • Craving/ Strong desire to use OxyContin
  • Spending lots of time to acquire, use or recover from the effects of OxyContin
  • Inability to fulfill major work, school, or home obligations as a result of recurrent Oxycontin usage
  • Giving up or reducing important occupational, social, or recreational activities due to OxyContin usage.
  • Failure to stop OxyContin usage despite recurrent interpersonal or social problems resulting from it
  • Recurrent Oxycontin usage in physically dangerous situations
  • Withdrawals
  • Tolerance
  • Continued OxyContin usage despite knowledge of recurrent psychological or physical problems linked to it

What to Expect During Teen Residential Treatment Therapy

  • Teenagers have weekly individual therapy sessions with licensed counselors to explore their emotions and understand how their thoughts and patterns influence their lives.
  • Group therapy sessions are regularly organized to offer a safe and supportive environment where teenagers can share their experiences and learn from each other
  • Teenagers consume a healthy diet and exercise regularly for improved physical and mental health
  • Teenagers are offered academic support to help them keep up with their schoolwork
  • Apart from evidence-based therapy approaches, the centers also administer holistic and recreational therapies such as teen art therapy, yoga for teens, teen surf therapy, teen music production, and hiking to help reduce stress and improve awareness.
  • The facilities offer family-centered treatment, helping families address communication issues, develop new coping skills, and build healthy boundaries.

Preparing Your Teen for Teen Residential Treatment Therapy

You should help your child physically and psychologically prepare for residential treatment therapy for the best results. Here are a few useful tips:

  • Review the teen residential therapy program’s process with them and remind them that it is not a punishment but a long-lasting solution.
  • Tell them what your expectations are
  • Encourage them to be expressive, or else the treatment process may take longer than expected
  • Gather the necessary paperwork, such as their medical history, appointment confirmation date, and health insurance information.

Choosing a Teen Residential Treatment Center

Questions to Ask When Choosing a Teen Residential Treatment Center

Your treatment center’s responses to the following questions should be positive:

  • Will my child get post-treatment recovery support?
  • Do teenagers receive holistic substance abuse treatment?
  • Are this program’s specifics appropriate for my teenager’s needs?
  • Does the center use evidence-based practices
  • Do the provided programs offer family support/education?
  • Is there a religious/spiritual component in the program?
  • Will my child get a healthy diet and exercise regularly?
  • Does the center teach life skills?

Factors to Consider When Choosing a Teen Residential Treatment Center

You should settle for a licensed/ accredited treatment center committed to successful teen treatment and recovery. It should have an accredited academic program and a team of qualified staff members to help your teenager keep up with the school curriculum.

Additionally, there should be nearby hospitals or emergency centers to deal with any emergencies that may occur during treatment. Lastly, when choosing a teen substance abuse treatment center, settle on the one that uses evidence-based practices and offers aftercare recovery programs for young adults.

Life After Residential Treatment Therapy

Teen residential treatment only lasts 45-60 days. Most of the work required for long-term recovery begins after that. Your teenager will need a good aftercare program, excellent relapse prevention strategies, a means to cope with triggers and cravings, and social support. Let’s expound on them.

Aftercare Programs for Teen Oxycodone Addiction

Teen aftercare programs are offered once addiction treatment ends to help teenagers maintain sobriety and achieve their life objectives.

We understand that recovery is a long-term journey at Key Healthcare; therefore, we arrange addiction aftercare program before the end of rehabilitation to enhance teen addiction recovery. Our programs have activities and resources tailored to help teenagers deal with subsequent triggers and cravings.

Relapse Prevention Strategies

Addiction is a complicated illness. Your teenager may return to drug use after a long period of sobriety, an occurrence known as relapse. Fortunately, there are relapse prevention strategies that teenagers can employ to reduce the chances of such an event. They include:

 Recognizing the stages of relapse

The three stages of relapse are emotional, mental, and physical relapse. Teenagers’ behaviors set them up during an emotional relapse even though they may not think of using drugs yet. Common signs include teenage isolation, anxiety, anger, poor eating and sleeping patterns, and bottled-up emotions.

The second stage, mental relapse, puts teenagers at war with themselves. They mostly think about the people, places, and memories of their previous drug use. Their minds focus on the good times, not the bad, and they may begin planning to use drugs again. In the last stage, physical relapse, the teen returns to using drugs. It normally starts with one pill and, before long, spirals into regular usage. Teenagers can prevent the last stage of relapse if they recognize and deal with the first two stages.

Also, read what parents need to say to teen who has relapsed

 Knowledge of Triggers

Teenagers should know and avoid/manage their triggers to prevent a relapse. These situations, people, or places may drive them back into their drug habit. Common triggers include enablers, withdrawal symptoms, bad relationships, stress, loneliness, poor self-care habits, drug-related memories, and previous drinking/using locations.


Finding healthier ways to reward oneself can help prevent a relapse. Teenagers can consider getting into a self-care routine, getting enough sleep, eating a well-balanced diet, exercising regularly, and doing things they love.

Other relapse prevention strategies include asking for help, remembering reasons for quitting, managing withdrawals, finding distractions, calling friends, following an existing relapse prevention plan model, and regular self-rewards.

Coping With Triggers and Cravings

Triggers such as stress and cravings such as specific social groups or people can drive teenagers back into drug use. Here are a few healthy ways of coping with them:

  • Attending regular therapy sessions
  • Having a good support system
  • Creating healthy habits
  • Enrolling in an outpatient program for the first few months
  • Attending 12-step recovery meetings
  • Doing enjoyable things such as painting, reading, going to the movies, or taking up a hobby
  • Having a concrete plan, such as recognizing the trigger, reassuring yourself that it doesn’t have power over you, and distancing yourself from the situation.

Rebuilding Relationships and Social Support

Teenagers should rebuild the relationships destroyed by their previous substance use disorder and obtain social support after treatment. Relationships impact the quality of life, interact with addiction and recovery efforts, and offer opportunities to showcase or practice the skills needed for addiction recovery. Here are a few tips that can help them forge stronger relationships with loved ones once again:

  • Actively working on rebuilding trust
  • Improving their communication skills
  • Talking openly about their recovery journey
  • Following through with any commitments or promises made
  • Reading self-help books
  • Joining support groups
  • Making amends for the past
  • Being purposeful and patient
  • Acknowledging that things have changed

To obtain social support, teens should consider joining recovery groups, attending group therapy sessions, or enrolling in sober living facilities, such as the ones provided in our extended care program.

Tips for Parents with OxyContin-Addicted Teens

Seeing addiction rob your happy, lively, and productive child of their future can be a painful experience. However, here are a few tips that should help:

  • Learn everything you can about OxyContin addiction and ask questions
  • Express your willingness to find them help and offer support
  • Attend family therapy sessions with your teen
  • Make prescription drugs less accessible at home
  • Take care of yourself too. Do not channel all your energy into your child’s recovery to the point of neglecting your mental and physical health.
  • Make your teenagers feel loved
  • Let your child feel that you are concerned about their well-being
  • Clearly speak with them
  • Set clear boundaries and behavioral consequences
  • Do not assume that you know what your adolescent is experiencing
  • Hold them accountable. Do not lie or make up excuses to cover up for their behavior
  • Avoid preaching, moralizing, lecturing, or threatening their behavior. Instead, create a safe and supportive environment that promotes recovery.
  • Do not blame yourself for their addiction. Instead, focus on helping them get help and recover.

Expected OxyContin Withdrawal Signs

Teenagers who suddenly discontinue opioid usage can experience serious withdrawal symptoms, uncontrolled pain, and in some cases, teenage suicidal thoughts or ideations. Opioid withdrawal can also lead to intestinal lining inflammation, extremely low moods, anxiety, and severe flu.

Habitual OxyContin users will likely experience restlessness, weakness, chills, increased blood pressure, muscle/bone pain, insomnia, diarrhea, increased pain sensitivity, and faster heart rate after long periods of not using.


We hope that you now understand how residential rehab for adolescent Oxycontin addiction works.

Our facilities at Key Healthcare use a holistic approach to treatment, equipping your teen with the right tools and support to overcome their Oxycontin addiction and maintain long-term sobriety. 

Contact us and let your child witness the healing effects of our practical skill-building exercises, evidence-based therapy approaches, and education programs. We will help you navigate the steps required in your child’s recovery journey.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

How Long Does Teen Residential Therapy Last?

Residential therapy programs generally last 45-60 days, depending on the severity of the patient’s condition and their reaction to treatment. Families that want to extend the above duration can enroll their teenagers in an extended care program or a sober living facility.

Can Parents Visit Their Teens During Residential Treatment Therapy?

Yes. Teen residential treatment centers understand the role of the family in addiction recovery. At Key Healthcare, we offer family-centered treatment. Parents can attend family therapy sessions with their children to develop new coping skills, address communication issues and build healthy boundaries.

How Do I Pay for Teen Residential Therapy?

You can pay for your teenager’s treatment costs via insurance. We have partnered with several insurance providers, such as Value Options, HUMANA One, MultiPlan, and BlueCross BlueShield, among others, to give you an easy time offsetting your child’s bills. Verify with us here whether your insurance will cover your teenager’s treatment.

What Happens If My Teen Relapses After a Residential Treatment Program?

We have implemented aftercare and outpatient programs to help teenagers avoid relapsing after treatment. However, addiction is a complex illness, and it may still happen. We, therefore, offer certain therapy options, such as relapse prevention therapy, to prevent such a case from happening again. We also have a teen extended care program where teens in recovery stay with us and get additional support to maintain sobriety.

How Do I Know If My Teen Needs Residential Treatment Therapy?

You should consider residential treatment therapy for your teenager if teen intensive outpatient treatment doesn’t seem to work or there is a need for a robust treatment approach. This type of treatment is also suitable for repeated relapse and dual-diagnosis cases.

What Are the Short and Long-Term Effects of OxyContin Addiction?

Short-term effects of OxyContin addiction include sleeping problems, nausea, vomiting, constipation, difficulty breathing, vomiting, agitation, confusion, irritability, disorientation, restlessness, frustration, and periods of blurred consciousness. Long-term effects include low blood pressure, reduced libido, circulatory problems, liver damage, erratic behaviors, unethical behaviors, isolation, personality changes, extreme mood swings in teenagers, interest changes, and erratic behaviors.

Are There Any Support Groups for Parents of Teens with OxyContin Addiction?

Yes. Parents requiring extra support in dealing with their teenager’s addiction can try the following options:

  • Parents of Addicted Loved Ones
  • Smart Recovery Family & Friends
  • NAMI support groups
  • Families Anonymous
  • Nar-Anon