Considerations for people taking hydrocodone include the following:
- The medication comes in tablet, capsule, or syrup form. It is taken by mouth, often every four to six hours as needed for pain.
- Hydrocodone is either taken "as needed" or on a scheduled basis. "As needed" means you will only take a dose if you are experiencing pain (if you are not in pain, you will skip the dose), while "scheduled use" means you should take it on schedule, even if you are not in pain. Most healthcare providers prescribe hydrocodone on an "as needed" basis, rather than a scheduled basis.
- It is best to take hydrocodone with food, as this may help reduce stomach upset.
- For the medication to work properly, it must be taken as prescribed. Do not increase your dose without your healthcare provider's approval. Do not suddenly stop taking hydrocodone, especially if you have taken it regularly for more than several weeks (see Hydrocodone Withdrawal Symptoms).
- If you are unsure about anything related to your hydrocodone dosage, please talk with your doctor, nurse, or pharmacist. Do not stop taking the drug without first discussing it with your healthcare provider.