The misuse of prescription drugs may be the most common form of
drug abuse among the older adults, adolescents, and women. Scientists
and experts believe that prescription drug abuse is on the rise
among the users. People misuse the intake of painkillers, tranquilizers,
sedatives and stimulants, which may lead to deadly results. It is
assumed that ability to self-prescribed drugs may be the primary
cause to this form of addiction as this is best and easiest way
Some of the commonly abused prescription drugs
Among enormous prescription drugs following three classes of prescription
drugs are most commonly abused or misused:
- Opioids, mostly prescribed to relieve from pain,
- CNS depressants, used to treat anxiety and sleep disorders,
- Stimulants, prescribed to treat the sleep disorder, and obesity.
Preventing and detecting prescription drug abuse
Most of the patients use medications as directed by their doctors,
but sometimes such medications or prescribed drugs become addictive
and work as stimulants to brain if not taken accordingly. Generally,
painkillers or any type of stimulants don’t really behave
as addictive if taken in a right manner as per their doctors’
advice. The risk for addiction exists when these medications are
used in ways other than as prescribed. Only proper awareness and
vital roles played by physicians, nurse practitioners, and pharmacists
as well as patients can help in preventing and detecting prescription
Treating prescription drug addiction
It is believed that no specific treatment is appropriate or laid
down for all the users addicted to prescription drugs. Treatment
is initiated according to the type of drug used and the cause behind
it. Counseling or multiple courses of treatment may be advised to
treat any prescription drug abuse.
Types of Treatment
There are two main categories of prescription drug addiction treatment,
i.e. behavioral and pharmacological.
Behavioral treatments: It teaches and helps people
to function without drugs, to handle cravings, to avoid the situations
that could lead to drug use, to prevent relapse, and to handle relapse
should it occur. Additionally individual counseling, group or family
counseling and emergency management can also help patients to tackle
with this problem.
Pharmacological treatment: Some addictions, such
as opioid, can also be treated with medications. Such treatment
is known as pharmacological treatments, which counter the effects
of the drug on the brain and behavior. This form of treatment can
also be used to relieve the symptoms of withdrawal, to treat an
overdose, or to help overcome drug cravings.
Although both the forms of treatments, i.e. behavioral or pharmacological
may alone be helpful for treating prescription drug addiction, but
research shows that a combination of both, if available, works as
miracle on the patient.