Prescription Medication Addiction

Understanding Prescription Medication Addiction

Addiction usually begins with a patient abusing their medication.

Nearly everyone has used prescription medication at some point in their lives. Maybe you first started using your medication to treat chronic pain, anxiety, a sleep disorder, ADD, or some other condition. What started out as voluntary use of a drug prescribed by your doctor soon morphed into something very different—addiction. Now, your body is dependent on your medication, and your life revolves around seeking out and using this medication to not only treat your condition, but also to experience a high or simply avoid the pain of withdrawal. With professional support, you can break free of this dependency and live a life free of addiction.

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Frequently Asked Questions About Prescription Medication Addiction

Addiction usually begins with a patient abusing their medication. If you or your loved one has been taking larger or more frequent doses of medicine than prescribed, there is a higher risk of addiction. You may be addicted to your medication if:

  • You experience painful withdrawal symptoms whenever you try to quit using your medicine
  • You have to take increasingly larger (or more frequent) doses in order to treat your condition and/or ward off withdrawal symptoms
  • You experience irresistible cravings for your medication

The National Institute on Drug Abuse reports that there are three types of prescription drugs that most commonly lead to addiction. First, opioids used to treat chronic pain, such as codeine and morphine, are highly addictive. Second, depressants used to treat anxiety and sleep disorders, such as Xanax and Valium, can lead to addiction. Third, stimulants such as Ritalin or Adderall, used to treat ADD and narcolepsy, can be very addictive.

Addiction to prescription medications—like any other addiction—is a disease. It can happen to people of any age, race, or socioeconomic status. Addiction does not reveal a character weakness. There are certain risk factors that increase your likelihood of addiction, including your genetics, your social environment, and your stage of development.

In order to reduce your risk of addiction, it is extremely important to follow your doctor’s instructions carefully. Never increase, decrease, start, or stop any medication without guidance from your doctor. Don’t crush, break, or snort any pills that are meant to be swallowed whole, and ask your doctor before combining your medication with alcohol or other drugs (including prescription and over-the-counter medications).

Withdrawal from an addictive substance can be painful, dangerous, and even fatal if attempted without professional support. Recovery begins with a medically supervised detox. Then, proven treatment methods such as Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT) are employed to ensure lasting success and freedom.

How Hawaii Island Recovery Can Help You Recover from Prescription Medication Addiction

Here at Hawaii Island Recovery, we offer medically supervised detox to help wean you off of your medication safely and with as few painful symptoms as possible. Next, we combine effective evidence-based interventions (such as CBT), experiential therapies (such as wild dolphin assisted therapy), and holistic health services (such as yoga and massage) to promote total healing of the body, soul, and mind.

To find out more about how we can help you or your loved one recover from prescription medication addiction

Call Us Today: 866-390-5070