What happens if you snort Vicodin?

Basic anatomy lesson that describes what happens if you snort Vicodin. How it enters the body and what it does. A list of what happens when you snort Vicodin here.

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Vicodin: a basic definition

Vicodin is the brand name for hydrocodone, an opioid drug.  Opioids work by changing the way the we perceive pain in the brain. Opioids also affect the pleasure centers in the brain.

Vicodin detection times

Vicodin detection times are around 48-96 hours after last dose, or 2-4 days after you take a Vicodin pill.  However, the main ingredient in Vicodin, hydrocodone, can usually be only detected using an “Extended Opiates/Opioids” drug screenIn other words, Vicopdin may not show up on a standard DOT 5 panel drug screen.

Snorting Vicodin – what happens?

When you snort Vicodin, the drug enters the bloodstream and brain very quickly.  This is because it is absorbed by the mucous membrane of the nasal sinus passages.  When you snort Vicodin, it takes from 3-5 minutes before you feel the effects.  Basically, snorting Vicodin is a more efficient and faster method to get the pain reliever in the body and to intensify the effects.  Although snorting Vicodin can amplify the euphoric effects of the drug, it can also increase the risk for serious medical consequences.  Here’s a list of the negative effects of Vicodin.  The risk of adverse effects increases when  when you snort Vicodin and may include:

  • addiction
  • coma
  • death
  • overdose
  • stop breathing

If you snort Vicodin, can you become addicted?

Yes, if you snort Vicodin, the likelihood of addiction is high.  Because prescription drugs act directly or indirectly on brain systems, you can become addicted to Vicodin within a few weeks of taking it.  But addiction potential is the highest if you snort Vicodin, a route that stimulates the actions of the drug, which has been designed to release into the bloodstream slowly at prescribed doses.  So how do you know if you’re headed down the road toward Vicodin addiction?  More on symptoms of Vicodin addiction here.

Reference sources: Judiciary Committee Subcommittee on Crime and Drugs U.S. Senate Testimony on Scientific Research on Prescription Drug Abuse
About the author
Lee Weber is a published author, medical writer, and woman in long-term recovery from addiction. Her latest book, The Definitive Guide to Addiction Interventions is set to reach university bookstores in early 2019.


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  1. Snorting vicodin is not all that bad. I prefer the 10/325 tablets, snort about a half tablet ever couple of hours, works great on my pain. I don’t think it’s very addictive though, and not very harmful, I’ve been snorting it for many years without any problems. Some people can’t handle their drugs though, and that causes problems.

  2. Works great on fibromyalgia pain. My husband had a few about 2 years ago for bad back pain he was having. His “friend” told him about snorting and then he started me on snorting them. Now we can’t stop snorting them. He gets 180 a month and I get 150 a month from our doctors and it is never enough for him(orally or snorted) We end up buying about 60 more on the street at $3.00 EACH. Not good. DONT start snorting them. They do work faster if you snort them.

  3. As JT says: the main rea son you shouldn’t snort it is because it contains Tylenol. APAP is very bad for you. Esp ecially on your mucous membranes (not to mention liver). You are asking for busted capillaries, infections, and possibly much worse. Never snort ones combined with APA P, Ibup rofen, or the like.

  4. What they don’t tell you is it BURNS and does NOT give you the high you are looking for. The taste is HORRIBLE. It will inflame your sinuses and leave you blowing your bloody nose and sniffling aspirin flavored SNOT for hours. It SUCKS!!! Don’t even bother snorting Vicodin. Find another way man.

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