By: Zinnia Healing Editorial Staff | Edited By: Rebecca Hill
Prescription Drug Abuse and Addiction Treatment Options
The United States has a major prescription drug abuse problem. And our society is in denial.
- 6% of Americans over the age of 12 abuse prescription drugs every year. That’s around 16 million people.
- 12% of those who abuse prescription drugs have an addiction problem. That’s about 2 million people.
- Only 13% of those people acknowledge their addiction.
The most abused prescription drugs in the United States?
Painkillers. Then opiates. Then sedatives. Then stimulants.
We’re experiencing a prescription drug epidemic, and it’s getting worse.
Doctors prescribe drugs for all kinds of reasons. Pain. Depression. Anxiety. The list is endless.
Some doctors overprescribe these drugs. Or patients take a higher dose than prescribed. Or take medication for longer than recommended. All these factors can result in abuse. Then dependency. Then addiction.
Here at Zinnia Healing, we’ve seen this scenario play out time and time again. A doctor prescribes someone a drug to reduce pain. Then that person abuses the drug and becomes addicted.
But it’s not the patient’s fault.
We believe there’s always a root cause that drives someone to abuse prescription drugs. It could be something that happened in their childhood. Or a recent traumatic event. Or a mental health disorder. Or perhaps the person didn’t have enough knowledge about the prescribed drug.
That’s why we judge no one who walks through the doors of our treatment center. Every person who needs our help has a unique set of circumstances that led to their addiction problem. It’s not your fault, but it’s your responsibility to take the steps to change your life.
What happens next matters:
- How the person with a prescription drug addiction plans to change their life.
- How that person starts their road to recovery.
- How that person avoids relapse.
We can help with the “how.”
Our professional team of support workers, counselors, therapists, psychologists, and psychiatrists has more than 150 years of combined recovery experience. Many of us have abused prescription drugs in the past. Drugs like Adderall. Ambien. Valium. You name it.
That’s what makes us qualified.
Zinnia Healing takes a holistic approach to prescription drug abuse recovery. We use evidence-based treatments that provide our patients with the tools and techniques to conquer addiction once and for all.
No preconceived ideas.
Just custom treatment plans based on the individual.
Here’s everything you wanted to know about prescription drug abuse but were too afraid to ask.
What Is a Prescription Drug?
A prescription drug is a medication that requires a prescription from a doctor or healthcare professional. You can’t buy these drugs over the counter.
Prescription drugs treat a wide range of conditions, from back pain to anxiety. Someone might receive a prescription for more than one drug. It all depends on their illness or condition.
The 10 most prescribed drugs in the U.S. are:
Not all prescription drugs contain addictive ingredients. However, someone can become addicted to almost any drug when they develop certain habits that lead to psychological dependence. A person might feel like they need a specific drug to function. Or experience negative emotions when they stop taking a particular medication.
All of this can lead to addiction:
“Many people don’t understand why or how other people become addicted to drugs,” says the National Institute on Drug Abuse. “They may mistakenly think that those who use drugs lack moral principles or willpower and that they could stop their drug use simply by choosing to. In reality, drug addiction is a complex disease, and quitting usually takes more than good intentions or a strong will.”
Zinnia Healing can help people understand why they become addicted to drugs. Our extensive knowledge helps substance users and their loved ones identify the signs and symptoms of prescription drug abuse. It’s the first step in the recovery process. Once someone learns the root cause of their addiction, they can develop tools that manage withdrawal and prevent relapse.
If you have an addiction to a prescription drug or know someone who has a prescription drug problem, contact Zinnia Healing at (855) 430-9439.
What Is Prescription Medication Abuse?
Prescription medication abuse happens when:
- A person takes a drug for a duration or at a dosage other than prescribed.
- A person takes a prescription drug that belongs to someone else.
- A person takes medication without a prescription.
Here are some examples of this type of drug abuse:
- Someone receives a prescription to treat a back injury but takes a higher dose than the doctor suggests.
- Someone gets a prescription for anxiety but continues to take the drug for longer than recommended.
- Someone takes a prescribed medication that belongs to a household member.
- Someone buys a drug on the black market without a prescription.
In these scenarios, someone might become dependent on a drug and develop an addiction. This is far more common than you might think, and many of the patients we see at Zinnia Healing have formed dangerous habits that interfere with their day-to-day lives.
This kind of abuse can happen to anyone, regardless of age or background. We have seen people from all walks of life develop a prescription drug addiction, and all have one thing in common:
They want to overcome their addiction for good.
We help them do that.
Our professional team can customize a treatment plan based on lifestyle, circumstances, and experiences. These plans increase the chances of successful recovery and can reduce the likelihood of that person relapsing in the future.
We know the road to recovery is tough. But all our team members who abused prescription drugs in the past have conquered their addictions.
Now you or your loved one can.
If you have an addiction to prescription drugs or want to help someone who abuses this type of medication, contact us now. Call Zinnia Healing at (855) 430-9349 for an assessment.
Prescription Drug Abuse: How Common Is It?
Nearly 46% of American adults used a prescription drug in the previous 30 days, according to the National Center for Drug Abuse Statistics (NCDAS). Almost 10 million people abuse painkillers, 9.3 million abuse opioids, and 5.9 million abuse sedatives.
“The types of prescriptions people abuse most are classified as psychotherapeutic drugs. These are drugs that may be prescribed to aid mental, emotional, and/or physical health,” says NCDAS. “Psychotherapeutic drugs are generally categorized as painkillers, stimulants, sedatives, and tranquilizers. [Around 60%] of prescription drug abusers use pain relievers.”
Prescription medication abuse has become a bigger problem in recent years. Doctors sometimes overprescribe drugs to patients, and many people don’t understand the link between these drugs, dependency, and addiction.
“The reasons for the high prevalence of prescription drug misuse vary by age, gender and other factors, but likely include ease of access,” says the National Institute on Drug Abuse. “The number of prescriptions for some of these medications has increased dramatically since the early 1990s.”
There are many reasons someone might develop an addiction to prescription drugs. These reasons include:
- A lack of knowledge about a prescription drug.
- Family history of substance abuse.
- An underlying disorder that contributes to addictive behavior.
- Past addictions to other substances, including alcohol.
- Some psychiatric conditions.
Most Abused Prescription Drugs
Some of the most abused prescription drugs include:
- Adderall: A stimulant that treats attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) in children and adults. Over 75% of those who abuse stimulants use Adderall.
- Ativan: A type of drug called a benzodiazepine that treats acute anxiety.
- Morphine: An analgesic that treats pain. Morphine is available under various brand names, including Astramorph, Duramorph, and Kadian.
- Oxycodone: A highly addictive opioid that manages pain.
- Ritalin: The brand name for a stimulant called methylphenidate used to treat ADHD. Nearly 25% of all those who abuse stimulants take Ritalin.
- Xanax: The brand name for alprazolam, a benzodiazepine that helps with anxiety and panic disorders.
What Are the Signs/Symptoms of Prescription Medication Abuse?
There are various signs and symptoms associated with the abuse of prescription drugs. These include:
- Fatigue and drowsiness
- Slurred speech/slow speech
- A lack of concentration
- Changes in breathing
- Memory loss
- High blood pressure
- Problems sleeping
- An irregular heartbeat
Someone with a prescription medication problem might:
- Request their prescription early.
- See more than one doctor about the same issue.
- Have financial problems.
- Experience mood swings.
- Withdraw themselves from social situations.
- Take frequent trips to the bathroom.
- Experience relationship problems.
A person who abuses prescription drugs might find it challenging to hold a job or maintain a relationship. Often, their dependency on a prescription drug becomes the focus of their life.
What Are the Withdrawal Symptoms of Prescription Medication Abuse?
Withdrawal symptoms of prescription medication abuse include:
- Dilated pupils
- Body aches
- Fluctuations in mood
- Increased heart rate
- High blood pressure
- Sleep problems
Prescription Drug Abuse Treatments
There are various treatments for prescription medication abuse. These treatments include:
Substance abuse rehab provides those with prescription drug problems an opportunity to start a new life. When someone visits a rehab center, they learn techniques to manage their addiction and start the withdrawal process.
Not all rehab centers are the same. Substance users should choose one that offers ongoing support and a wide range of custom therapies based on their unique experiences. Otherwise, that person might not receive the recovery outcome they deserve.
2. Outpatient Rehab
Outpatient rehab doesn’t require the substance user to stay overnight at a treatment center. Instead, that person can schedule a rehab program around their schedule, making it perfect for those with family or work commitments. A successful outpatient rehab program includes therapy, medication-assisted treatment, psychiatric services, and medical care.
A licensed drug and alcohol counselor or counseling team can provide a substance user with individual, group, or other therapy solutions that address the underlying cause of their addiction. A counselor can also help someone with a prescription drug addiction learn skills to avoid cravings and prevent relapse.
Detoxification is the process of gradually decreasing the dosage of a substance user’s prescription drug. The person might experience various withdrawal symptoms (like those listed above), so a professional should support this process.
5. Medication-Assisted Therapy
Sometimes, someone with an addiction to prescription drugs might require medication to ease withdrawal symptoms and reduce the chances of relapse.
6. Family-Based Therapy
A good rehab center also provides support for loved ones of those who have developed a prescription drug addiction. Family-based therapies support substance users during their most troublesome times.
Recovery doesn’t stop after rehab is completed. It’s an ongoing process and one that will include many temptations and frustrations. That’s why someone with a prescription drug addiction should choose a center that provides aftercare. A good aftercare program might include frequent medical evaluations or the opportunity to reside in a sober living home.
How Zinnia Healing Can Help
Prescription medication abuse is a problem we deal with every day. Our treatment center welcomes everyone who wants to start a new life free from dependency and addiction. We customize our treatment plans based on the type of prescription drug abuse, providing patients with a personalized program that increases the chances of recovery.
It’s what we’ve done for years.
Here are some benefits of visiting our treatment center:
- We provide patients with the highest standards of care. We believe everyone should live a life free from addiction.
- We provide ongoing support for loved ones of those who abuse prescription drugs. Our family therapies and other treatments identify the root cause of prescription drug addiction for more successful recovery outcomes.
- Our private and intimate treatment center provides respite.
- We specialize in holistic, evidence-based treatments. These include group therapy, counseling, drug management, and individual therapy.
- We work with all major healthcare providers in the U.S., providing patients and their loved ones with financial peace of mind. You can verify your insurance plan here.
- Our team has more than 150 years of combined recovery time.
- We specialize in co-occurring disorders that might influence a prescription drug addiction, such as bipolar and borderline personality disorder.
Zinnia Healing specializes in prescription drug abuse treatment with an incredible range of programs that promote recovery. Whether you have a prescription medication addiction or know someone abusing these drugs, we can help. Call our team at (855) 430-9349 for a consultation.