Addiction is a serious epidemic in America. While many people think addiction applies only to illegal recreational drugs, prescription drugs can be even more addictive. Unfortunately, many doctors prefer to simply write prescriptions for their patients. As such, people have immediate and easy access to drugs. Many patients have legitimate needs for their prescriptions, but other people obtain pills to misuse them. Remember, prescription drug addiction can happen to anyone.
Risk factors for addiction exist in every location and social class in the country. For example, if you’ve had surgery and were prescribed pain medications, you can easily become hooked to the feelings of pain relief. Patients who experience anxiety are often prescribed addictive medications, such as Xanax. Additionally, children are often given potentially addictive medicines, like Ritalin, for ADHD. If you’ve suffered from addictions before, you have a higher risk of falling back into relapse; this is also true of those with family histories. Other risk factors include peer pressure, not knowing how to properly take medications and easy access to medicines.
Signs of Addiction
Addiction can happen quickly, so it’s important to know the signs. For example, individuals who are experiencing opioid addiction can have signs such as confusion, nausea, drowsiness, slurred speech, and poor coordination. Opioids have also been linked to extreme nausea. Similarly, stimulant additions can cause an irregular heartbeat, reduced appetite, insomnia, consistent paranoia, and high blood pressure. It’s important to identify the signs of addiction as impaired individuals are unable to do so and can put themselves in dangerous situations. For example, people addicted to prescription drugs cause more car accidents because prescription drugs impair reaction time, alter attention levels, and reduce coordination.
How to Avoid Becoming Addicted
Being responsible with your prescriptions is a great way to avoid becoming addicted. You should always check with your physician to ensure they’re prescribing you the best medicine; there may be an alternative with less potentially addictive ingredients. If you’re experiencing any strange side effects, always let your doctor know. It’s a safe practice to follow the directions closely and properly dispose of any unused portion. Also, it’s never a good idea to take medications that have been prescribed to someone else. Above all, pray to God for help should you find yourself in a compromising addiction. You’ve always got a support system around you made of your faith, your family, and your trusted health care staff.
Addiction can be a real dilemma for anyone. It can be a scary feeling to find yourself addicted to your prescription medications. There is always help, though, once you realize the signs of addiction. You have a support system around you, and the Lord guides it. After all, as it says in James 4:10, “Humble yourselves before the Lord, and he will lift you up.” Seek out help as you need it and you can have the power to overcome your addiction.
If you need more help in overcoming your addiction, try our addiction recovery program.