Tag: prescription drug addiction

How Addiction Happens

No one sets out to become an addict or alcoholic, it is a process that happens overtime and often the user does not see the warning signs before its too late.

For the majority of addicted individuals, their substance use begins innocently enough. They didn’t set out to become an addict when they first experimented with drugs or alcohol. Often, their first introduction to alcohol or drugs is through another person in a social setting. They may be visiting a friend and decide to go through their parent’s liquor or medicine cabinet. They might be at a party and are offered alcohol or drugs. It is rare for a person to experiment with a substance for the first time when they are by themselves. Typically, experimentation with drugs or alcohol begins during the individual’s teen years or even preteen years, when they are ill-equipped to properly think through the consequences of their actions. Preteens, teens and young adults are known for engaging in risky and unwise behaviors. This is because their focus in on the immediate pleasure and gratification they receive vs. being concerned about the potential consequences of their actions. All too often, the younger a person experiments with substances and begins using them recreationally the more likely it is that they will develop an addiction problem. Their attraction to drugs and alcohol and repeated use of substances becomes intertwined with their developmental growth and leads to much larger problems for them in the future; namely addiction.

Another way that people become addicted to drugs is through doctor-provided prescriptions. While the individual seeks out treatment for a ligament ailment, such as pain or anxiety – their use of prescribed medications becomes habit forming. Many medications used to treat pain and anxiety are known to be habit forming and carry a great deal of risk when consumed in any other way than prescribed by the physician. When the person develops an addiction to their medication it is not uncommon for them to “doctor shop” to feed their prescription drug addiction. Prescription drug addicts will go from doctor to doctor in hopes of cajoling the physicians into prescribing them a specific type of drug. As they continue to see doctor after doctor their skill at being able to manipulate the physicians increases and they are able to get the prescription drugs they are after. While many doctors today are savvy to “doctor shopping”, there are still some who take their patients at face value and prescribe the medication their patient indicates they require. Additionally, the online prescription drug market offers addicts access to opiates and benzodiazepines easily and hassle free. Street drug dealers also are known to sell prescription medications along side their illicit street drugs.

While it would be great to be able to tell who has the potential to become an addict, the science isn’t there yet and there is no way of knowing who will get hooked and who will stop at merely using drugs and alcohol recreationally. Generally speaking, most addicts look just like everyone else until their addiction becomes so out of hand that it physically, emotionally, and/or financially takes a toll on them. Knowing how addiction develops is critical in preventing it from happening.

 

What a Relief

Today was great success in sauna. I was able to cut back on smoking cigarettes and that has made such an improvement in how I feel. I hope that by the time I graduate from the New Life Detoxification Program I’ll be entirely smoke free. What a relief to not be dependent on any substance! Ending my addiction to prescription pills has been difficult but quitting smoking is going to be a huge challenge too. I know that if I apply the tech I’ve learned here I’ll be able to stop smoking and heal my body completely from all the damage I’ve done to it over the years.
M. B.

Abuse and Addiction to Prescription Drugs

Prescription Drug AbuseIt is likely that you have heard about the hazards of abusing and becoming addicted to prescription drugs. Unfortunately, even with all the press that prescription drug abuse and addiction has received it continues to be a growing trend. As of 2011, the National Drug Threat Assessment reported that controlled prescription drug abuse was only surpassed in the United States by marijuana abuse. The primary drugs fueling the plague of prescription addiction problems here in America are pain and anxiety medications. Both of these types of medications are potent, highly addictive and extraordinarily unsafe when combined with one another or other substances including alcohol.

What are some of the most common prescription drugs abused?

OxyContin, Vicodin, Xanax and Soma are the most common prescription drugs abused. Fentanyl is another prescription narcotic that is being abused by more and more individuals. This medication is a painkiller that comes in a few unique forms; patches and lollipops. One of the primary reasons why this drug is so desirable to prescription drug abusers is because it is said to be 100 times more powerful than morphine.

Download Free Prescription Drug Abuse Brochure

Prescription DrugsWhen it comes down to it, in some ways prescription drug abuse is much more dangerous than street drugs because users do not have their guard up. They tend to feel safer taking prescription drugs because they have been prescribed by doctors and handed out at pharmacies across the country. Prescription drug addicts do not have to buy their drugs on the streets; many can find what they need right there in their home medicine cabinet or that of their family or friends.

What is also different between street drugs and prescription drugs is the stigma attached with addiction to this genre of substances. Where illicit street drugs like heroin, meth and cocaine can seem dirty or even low-class, taking a prescription medication is something that almost everyone does at some point in their life. Abusing prescription drugs doesn’t have the same negative associations that illicit street drugs do because these medicines come out of bottles or blister packs making them feel clean and safe to consume.

Download Free Prescription Drug Abuse Brochure

Today, drug rehab is available throughout the country for addiction to prescription drugs. Narconon Fresh Start helps individuals recover from prescription drug addiction and find lasting sobriety. We understand that choosing to get help to stop your addiction problem is one of the most life challenging decisions you might have to make. While the process is not easy, getting off of prescription drugs will lead to a better quality of life and a chance to see your future free from the control that prescription drugs have over you today.

I didn’t know the dangers of prescription drugs

Prescription DrugsBefore Narconon Fresh Start I didn’t realize the many dangers of prescription drugs. I had a prescription in my name so I figured that if I wanted to take another Xanax it wasn’t really a big deal. I would use these prescription drugs to help me come down from the cocaine I was abusing, to help with the “recovery” from my binders and to take the edge off when necessary.

When I came to rehab I thought my only addiction was to the cocaine and marijuana I was using every day. After about a week I realized that I was craving Xanax and other prescription drugs that I regularly abused; that made me stop and think about my total drug use. Turns out that I was not only addicted to cocaine and marijuana but also to the prescription drugs that I was habitually consuming. It had never even crossed my mind that they were even an issue. After completing the Narconon Fresh Start drug rehab program and having several years of sobriety under my belt I know better than to put blind faith in a prescription drugs.

Download Free Prescription Drug Abuse Brochure

I only take what is absolutely necessary these days and avoid addictive substances. For example, when I had my children I made it clear that I didn’t want any pain medication after their birth and refused to take the prescription for Vicodin home that my doctor had left for me. I didn’t need that kind of temptation in my house. While prescription medications have a place in helping people, their abuse has led to so many deaths and tragedies that I am a strong supporter of being open and frank with today’s youth about their dangers. My children know the dangers of drugs, including prescription drugs and I will continue to reiterate that fact over and over again throughout their life.
J.V.

Prescription Drugs: What Parents Need to Know

Talking to your child about the dangers of prescription drugs can be a difficult topic to discuss. As a parent of two boys I understand the struggles of just getting them to open up about their day and who they are “hanging” out with. It is shocking to hear but a recent survey found that only 22% of teens today report discussing the risks of abusing any prescription drug without a doctor’s prescription with their parents. While it may be a rough topic to bring up, it is vital that you speak with your child or young adult about the dangers of prescription drugs before they hear about them from their friends. Current statistics show that one in five seniors in high school has abused a prescription drug by the time they graduate high school! It is estimated that each day in America an average of 2,000 teens abuse a prescription drug for the very first time.

Download Free Prescription Drug Abuse Brochure

Today’s youth are under the impression that all prescription drugs are safe because they are prescribed by a doctor and come in regulated doses. They are right there on their parent’s medicine shelves so how could they be dangerous?  Unfortunately, this misguided belief draws more and more youth to try prescription drugs each year without realizing that under certain circumstances the prescription drugs they are abusing are just as dangerous for their health and wellbeing as street drugs. When prescription drugs are abused, taken in combination with alcohol or other substances or ingested in a way contrary to the directions on the container … severe consequences are likely to take place; anything from dependence, slower brain activity, irregular heartbeats, dangerously high body temperature, heart failure, even strokes and seizures.

As a parent, if you don’t know what signs or symptoms to look for regarding prescription drug abuse then you might miss them all together. Common signs and symptoms of prescription opioid painkillers include: constipation, depression, low blood pressure, decreased breathing rate, confusion, sweating, and poor coordination. Signs and symptoms of prescription sedatives and anti-anxiety medications include: drowsiness, confusion, unsteady walking, poor judgment, involuntary and rapid movement of the eyeball and dizziness. The common signs and symptoms of prescription stimulant abuse include: weight loss, agitation, irritability, insomnia, high blood pressure, irregular heartbeat, restlessness and impulsive behavior. Additional signs of prescription drug abuse among teens include stealing, excessive mood swings or hostility, an increase or decrease in sleep, poor decision making and appearing to be “high” either energetic/revved up or sedated.

America’s youth are abusing prescription medications as well as over the counter drugs such as cough syrups. These substances are being abused because they are easily accessible, harder to detect by parents and simpler to hide. Teens are getting prescription drugs from their own parent’s medicine cabinets, the homes of their relatives or friends and even for sale from some drug dealers.

For many young adults, prescription drug abuse has become a gateway into the abuse of “harder” street drugs. A person who abuses and becomes addicted to a drug such as OxyContin may eventually switch to using heroin because it is cheaper. Recently, the University of Buffalo conducted a study, the results showed that 92% of the drug users who abused heroin were doing so because they had first become addicted to OxyContin and had switched to heroin.

Download Free Prescription Drug Abuse Brochure

Speak openly with the children you care for about prescription drugs. Instill in them the fact that they need to respect the power of prescription drugs and choose to use these substances properly. Explain that ALL medications, including prescription drugs have RISKS when taken along with their benefits; and that these risks increase when the mediation is abused. Be sure that the young adult in your life understands that it is their responsibility to only take their prescription medications and to do so safely and appropriately. Lastly, if they recognize that they or a friend has a problem with prescription drugs or any other substance they need to speak up and seek help right away so that the problem does not escalate.