Prescription painkiller abuse is on the rise. Problematic use or abuse includes everything from injecting or snorting ground-up prescription pills to get a high to taking a friend’s painkillers for a backache. The abuse may become compulsive and ongoing, despite the many negative consequences. This problem can affect all age groups; however, it is more common in teens.
The prescription drugs most often abused include stimulants, painkillers, anti-anxiety medications, and sedatives. Early identification and intervention is essential to prevent the abuse from turning into a full-blown addiction. A Calming Tide: Drug, Alcohol and Behavioral Resource, is an addiction and treatment resource that aims to help our readers understand addiction and how to treat different types of addiction.
According to users, opiate painkillers give a high similar to that provided by heroin. Sadly, abusers of prescription painkillers tend to gravitate towards heroin. In fact, several states are making it more difficult to get prescription drugs for illicit use, which is why many people have been turning to heroin.
Signs of Prescription Painkiller Abuse
People who are abusing prescription drugs will often have constricted pupils and will appear drowsy and tired. Early in their abuse, they may get nauseated and itchy, and as the drug kicks in, they may vomit. Those who have been crushing and snorting the drugs may leave rolled dollar bills and short straws around, along with small mirrors. Smokers of the drug are likely to leave pipes around, while those who inject it may leave syringes, droppers, syringe caps, and rubber tubes.
People who are high on opiates may show the following signs:
• Reduced social interaction
• Poor concentration and memory
• Slow breathing
• Mood swings
• Slow reaction and movement
• Depression and apathy
Once addiction kicks in, there will be behavioral and lifestyle changes. They will spend all the money they have on drugs and start selling when their money runs out. Their thoughts will be preoccupied with finding drugs and they may even turn to crime to get drug money. They will neglect their families, work, school, and have an overall change in attitude.
Most addicts feel that the only way they can feel normal is to be high. Often, they deny that they have a problem, or make excuses and promise to do better. However, they never deliver on the promise: not without help. A Calming Tide: Drug, Alcohol and Behavioral Resource are here to help such people.
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