Prescription Drug Addiction: Symptoms and Warning Signs

By The Care Centers. Posted on Mon Feb 22 2016

Prescription drug addiction is an all too common and insidious disease, and it usually occurs after a trauma, injury, or surgery requiring the use of strong prescription drugs. As a result, most prescription drug addictions are opiate addictions, and they can lead to harder drug use and heroin addiction if the user doesn’t get help in time.

Addiction Can Begin With Self-Medication
What do you do when you feel anxious, depressed, or sleepless? Do you try to handle the situation by looking at its root causes or seeking professional help? Or do you pop a Xanax or oxycodone pill and call it a night? If you answered the latter, then you are at an increased risk of developing a prescription drug addiction. This is how many addictions begin. You have a problem, and you have some muscle relaxers, pain medication, or anti-anxiety medication lying around, so you take a dose to make yourself feel better. Before you know it, though, you’ll be taking more and more, and you’ll become physically dependent on your prescription drugs to function without feeling sick.

Is Someone You Love Suffering From a Prescription Drug Addiction?
If you have a friend or family member who’s recently been through a traumatic experience and has been prescribed heavy painkillers or other prescription drugs, you may want to keep an eye on them. Most people who are prescribed these drugs will not develop an addiction, but it can happen to the most unlikely people. Some things to look for include but aren’t limited to:

  • Memory lapses
  • Headaches or dizziness
  • Slurred speech
  • Lack of coordination
  • Dilated pupils
  • Unexplained aggression, anxiety, or depression

Look for these symptoms, and pay attention to their alcohol use, as well. When everyone has had a single drink at a cocktail party or happy hour event, does your loved one seem more intoxicated than anyone else? The combination of prescription drugs and alcohol can be lethal, but it’s fortunately fairly obvious in most cases.

Changes in Behavior
If someone is addicted to prescription drugs, you will notice gradual changes in their behavior, as well. They may become withdrawn from family and friends. If it’s been a while since they’ve been able to self-medicate, they may be aggressive, hostile, or sullen, and they may be sweaty and sick, as well. You’ll notice sudden mood swings, crying episodes, and other erratic behavior, too. Watch out for these changes and make a note of them when you decide to intervene.

Call a Professional for an Intervention
If someone you love is abusing prescription drugs, it’s a serious problem. You cannot sit back and hope that they’ll come to their senses because the drugs they’re taking have hijacked their brain. Fortunately, if you call an addiction specialist, you can get help with a structured intervention that will give your loved one the opportunity to see their problem and take active steps toward recovery, including detoxification and rehab. Call one of The Care Centers’ locations near you today and help your loved one get their life back.

Tags: Substance Rehab