Last updated: 09/18/2018
Author: Addictions LLC
Reading Time: 3 minutes
Prescription painkillers, such as Percocet, Vicodin, and Oxycontin, are the most commonly abused prescription drugs, although prescriptions containing amphetamine are also commonly abused. Prescription stimulants are commonly abused by people in school or who need help with performance, such as athletes, but they are dangerous to take and can lead to addiction.
According to the National Institute on Drug Abuse, prescription stimulants are sometimes taken in larger quantities or in a different manner than prescribed. Since stimulants increase energy, suppress appetite, and increase focus and attention, they are frequently abused for purposes of performance enhancement and weight loss. Furthermore, since they may produce euphoria, these drugs are also frequently abused for recreational purposes.
People begin to abuse prescription drugs for various reasons, for example, some people may have been legally prescribed the drug and then began to abuse it over time, while other people may simply abuse the drug to receive its euphoric effects. Whatever the reason a person begins to abuse a prescription drug, once they become addicted to it, they will have a chronic disease that they will have to learn to manage for the rest of their life.
Prescription drug addiction often leads to dependency, which means that a person will need the drug in their system in order to avoid going through withdrawal symptoms. Withdrawal symptoms from prescription drugs can be both physical and mental, and most people need help in order to get through them.
Types of Prescription Drug Addiction and Treatment
Depending on a person’s prescription drug of choice, their treatment may need to be different. For example, people who are addicted to prescription painkillers, such as Oxycontin, may take the medication methadone to alleviate withdrawal symptoms, however methadone will not help a person dealing with amphetamine withdrawal.
According to the National Institute on Drug Abuse, the most effective treatment for drug addiction contains the combination of both treatment medications and behavioral therapy. In addition, in order for treatment to be effective, treatment methods have to be matched to each patient’s drug usage patterns as well as any medical, social, or psychiatric problems they may have.
Therapy is a factor in all prescription drug rehab programs, because addiction is a brain disease, however a person has different types of therapy they can involve themselves in when learning to overcome their addiction.
A person addicted to painkillers commonly will go through physical withdrawal symptoms, which they may need medication for, and then they will have to engage in therapy sessions to help them with any emotional problems they have experienced from their drug addiction. On the other hand people addicted to amphetamines commonly do not have much physical withdrawal symptoms, but the psychological withdrawals are intense, so they may need medication help with the psychological withdrawals in addition to therapy to help them deal with their addiction.