Treating prescription drug abuse

When you go to the doctor, you’re looking for a solution for your health problems. Whether you’re seeking help due to a psychological problem like dealing with depression or suffering from physical pain like migraines or a broken bone, there’s a chance that your medical professional will offer to prescribe you medication.

Many people can take prescription drugs as they’re prescribed; the result can be extremely helpful for their physical or mental issue. However, if you notice that you have a tendency to err toward risky behavior, you might be putting yourself at risk of abusing prescription drugs.

A rise in prescription drug abuse

When you go see a doctor over health concerns, be they mental or physical, there are generally three types of prescription drugs they’ll assign you: Opioids, which are designed to treat pain; central nervous system depressants, which include things like sedatives that are aimed to help with conditions like sleep disorders and anxiety; and stimulants, which are prescribed to treat neurological disorders like ADHD .

All of these prescriptions can be helpful when prescribed and used correctly, but there are a growing number of people turning to prescription drug abuse. The National Institute on Drug Abuse reports that more than 54 million Americans have non-medically used prescription drugs in their lifetime. If you’re abusing prescription drugs, you’re putting yourself at risk of organ failure, addiction and even death. Those who become addicted to prescription medications are not only putting their lives at risk, but they’re also changing their brain chemistry.

When you become addicted to prescription pills, your brain changes; your standard needs are replaced with the need to find and use your drug of choice. This, in turn, can alter your impulse-control and other essential brain functionality.

Treatment options

If you or someone you love is addicted to prescription drugs, the first thing you should do is connect with a medical professional. A doctor or psychologist will be able to recommend a course of action or a treatment facility, but there are also a few things you can try to do on your own.

Find support

Why do treatment groups like Alcoholics Anonymous work so well? It’s not just because AA offers impactful strategies – it’s because the organization brings together a group of people. You can try to go to organized groups specifically for someone dealing with addiction, and you can also surround yourself with the support and love of people who are already in your life. Whether it’s taking time to regularly having dinner with your family or joining a soccer team with your coworkers, being around other people will empower you. Not sure who to turn to? You can use the services of a professional, like a trained Results Coach, to help you move past your struggles and toward your goals.

showing support for someone dealing with prescription drug abuse

Reframe your thoughts

woman dealing with prescription drug abuse

When you’re addicted to a substance, your brain is craving that substance on a biological level. Your body and mind need to get access to prescription drugs, which can have physical and psychological consequences. If you’ve decided to break free from your addiction, you need to reframe your thoughts. Catch yourself in the act – when you crave prescription drugs, what are you doing? Is it at a certain time of day? Are you using as a response to some triggering event, like stress or personal conflict? When you feel yourself beginning to think about using, change your thoughts. You believe that you need these drugs to feel better, but it’s time to tell yourself a different story. Cut your negative thoughts off as they come and redirect your mind to positive goals instead.

Discover your passion

When was the last time you went after something you truly wanted? Have your goals become sidetracked in the pursuit of prescription drugs? Addiction is never productive, and it’s time to get back to fulfilling your dreams. Take time to think about what you really want. Is it financial freedom? A loving relationship? Now consider how prescription drug abuse can hinder these goals. Devise a plan to go after your goals and tell yourself that there’s nothing more important than doing so. With your true purpose at the forefront of your mind, you’ll find you have less motivation to abuse drugs.

exercising to deal with prescription drug abuse

Prescription drug abuse runs rampant in America, but change can start with you. Speak with a medical professional about your best course of action, then work to modify your behavior through goal-setting and locating an incredible support system.

Important note

The information and other content provided in this article, or in any linked materials, are not intended and should not be construed as medical advice, nor is the information a substitute for professional medical expertise or treatment. See full disclaimer.

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