Prescription drug addiction is often misunderstood. You may be addicted and not even know it. For example, what may have started as a prescription of painkillers for a minor back injury two years ago has turned into a full blown addiction that you can't stop even though the injury is healed. Careful consideration should go into whether or not a person is addicted to prescription drugs. There is usually a good reason of why a doctor would prescribe you or anyone else a medication. The question isn't whether or not the drug is legal, the question is: Are you abusing it?
Usually an addicted person doesn't realize they are addicted until the dosage is reduced. Sometimes they will go to any length to increase their dosage so they can feel normal again or get the desired high. Many people justify their prescription drug abuse by realizing the differences between a street drug addict, who uses hard drugs like cocaine or heroin, and themselves who are only taking medications that the doctor has legally approved and prescribed. As with any addiction, it takes an honest look into ones own life to see if there really is a problem.
Other than the obvious extreme behaviors of prescription drug addiction like falsifying prescriptions or stealing other people's medications, sometimes our addictions are obvious to other people but may not be so obvious to us. Asking a close friend or family member their thoughts on the matter may give us some insight, but not always.
The only true test is whether or not you can take it as it is exactly prescribed without craving more. Thinking about it honestly, do you find yourself taking extra because what worked before may not be working now? If you are telling your doctor half-truths about discomforts or pain levels, or lying to get more medication, you may have a serious problem. Maybe you are shopping around to various doctors to get more of the same prescription because a single doctor just won't do it for you. If you are over medicating yourself frequently and refilling the prescription earlier than prescribed, you may have a problem. Maybe you have noticed periods of time or events that are hard to remember or you may not remember them at all. Maybe you find it hard to leave the prescription completely alone when its purpose has been served and is no longer needed. Yet, you find yourself refilling the prescription and taking the medication again and again. These are behaviors of an addicted person.
The addictive qualities of many pain killers are very high. Doctors are aware of this, making it harder for the general population to overmedicate itself. Physical tolerance can quickly build against many of the prescription drugs on the market today. Possibly the levels that may have worked for you in the past aren't working now and you are taking higher doses than required to get the same effect.
Trade names like Valium and Xanax are familiar to most people and are two of the most abused prescription drugs around and two of the hardest to stop. For a long time user and considering the type of drug and daily dosage, stopping cold turkey could result in serious damage to the brain, neurological disorders, seizures, convulsions and possibly death. Stopping by yourself is not recommended. As with any prescription medications, a medical detox may be required before starting a treatment program.
For more information on alcohol and drug addiction, please visit: Alcohol and Drug Rehab . For information on intervention, please visit: Intervention . For testimonials on how rehab worked for them, please visit: Testamonials .
Patrick McLemore has been a recovering alcoholic and drug addict since June 6, 2005. Patrick widely known as an expert in the field of addictions, he has not only studied the topic extensively, but has lived it. Patrick has worked with the Manor House Recovery Center for over two years. During that time he has been instrumental in the recovery and continued sobriety of numerous recovering alcoholic and drug addicts.