A prototype of a drug addict would probably be someone seen in the corner of the streets. These drug addicts are always looking cautiously around, doing anxiety-related behaviors, yet very discrete with these behaviors. Usually, these people are avoided by passersby and are looked at by society with judgmental eyes. These addicts secretly acquire the drugs from a dealer in a rendezvous.
However, if we come to realize, addicts also come from those who normally participates in the cycle of society. These people could be your own babysitter, the newspaperman, the bagel man, or even taxi driver who drives you everyday to work. Like almost everyone, these people are those who pay for prescribed drugs in pharmacies. Yes. Prescription drugs could be as as any prohibited drugs. People who buy drugs at the pharmacy can be as addicted to certain drugs as to those who discretely buy illegal drugs from drug dealers in the corners of every street.
Prescription drug serves its purpose when it is prescribed by the doctor to the patient in order to take care of any health-related problems. Except, what we did not see coming was that these prescription drugs have the potential to be a source of dependency and addiction. In 2007, about 7 million Americans abuse prescription drugs. Furthermore, it has been known that prescription drug addiction do not only exist in America but also in other parts of the world.
We might think that nobody is safe from addiction, even someone who has been prescribed with a drug by a medical professional. On the other hand, we must recognize that if taken properly, these drugs need not be addictive. It is when we take more than what is prescribed that we are more likely to be a candidate for prescription drug addiction.
Opioids, depressants, and stimulants are the three types of commonly abused prescription drugs. This is according to the National Institute on Drug Abuse.
Opioids are prescribed to relieve sever pain usually after surgery. Opiods do not just take away the feelings of pain but they also cause euphoria. Opioids work by binding to opioid receptors found in the central nervous system and the gastrointestinal tract.
Depressants are used to take care anxiety problems, acute stress, and sleep disorders. As depressants, these drugs slow the brain’s ability to function. Long terms and large doses of depressants could lead to tolerance and thus, the body would need larger doses to achieve the “relaxing” feeling being brought by the drug. These results to addiction.
Stimulants, on the other hand, do the opposite of depressants. These drugs improve brain activities, increasing energy, awareness, and alertness, and are used to treat attention deficit disorder, attention deficit hyperactivity disorder, and narcolepsy. Stimulants cause the heart rate to increase as well as respiration which can be interpreted by the user as euphoria.
An individual is said to be an addict to the drug when he or she needs larger amount of the drug to attain certain effects. Most often, when their physicians stop prescribing the drug, they go “doctor shopping”, asking friends to get drugs for them. This leads the patient to addiction. Usually, elder people are the ones vulnerable to prescription drug abuse. They did not will it. Regrettably, they just have a tendency to be prescribed with added medications than the younger ones. The major cause of the increase in the occurrence of prescription drug abuse is still not known. However, it cannot be denied that convenience of the drug could be a causative factor.
Treating prescription drug would vary depending on the kind of drug the patient is addicted to The needs of the person should also be taken into account. Behavioral and pharmacological are the two main courses of drug addiction. Behavioral treatment encourages patient to end drug use and educate them how to function normally even without the drug. Counseling should go hand in hand so as to show and follow up the patient for any improvement. Medication could also be of great help most especially with opioid addiction.
Any drug is not free from addiction
. To treat this addiction, one needs a good combination of behavioral and pharmacological treatment.