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Rehab for Prescription Medication

Prescription drugs can cause adverse effects or interact with other medications. It is important to follow the instructions on the label and inform your doctor of all the medications you are taking to avoid potential risks.

Navigation: What is Prescription Drug Addiction?, Why Do People Abuse Their Prescription Medications?, Adverse Effects of Prescription Drug Abuse, What is Rehab for Prescription Medication?, What to Expect from Prescription Medication Rehab, Rehab Is Your Best Chance


Research has shown that substance use disorders are medical conditions that affect the brain. Therefore addiction is not a moral failing nor is it a reason to ridicule someone. And yet there is still stigma surrounding addiction and rehab. Because of this, not many people receive treatment even though addiction can be treated effectively.

Here we will talk about one of the most common addictions that affect people in the US: prescription drug addiction. Taking note of the type of addiction can help the person receive proper care. It can also help you make sense of the patient’s condition, symptoms, and unique needs.

Prescription medications can be very helpful for managing various medical conditions, such as chronic diseases, infections, and pain. These medications can help relieve symptoms, control disease progression, and improve overall health and quality of life.

However, it is important to note that prescription medications should only be taken under the supervision of a doctor, and the patient should follow the instructions and dosages provided by the doctor to avoid adverse effects or complications.

Prescription drugs can cause adverse effects or interact with other medications. It is important to follow the instructions on the label and inform your doctor of all the medications you are taking to avoid potential risks.

In fact, some prescription medications can be addictive. This depends on the type of medication, the individual’s body chemistry, and how the medication is taken. Pain relievers such as opioids, benzodiazepines, and some stimulants have a high potential for abuse and dependence. When used appropriately under the supervision of a healthcare provider, these medications can provide effective relief for certain conditions. However, if they are used in an uncontrolled manner, they can lead to addiction and negative consequences.

When it comes to prescription drug addiction treatment, it may require several components like medical detox, counseling, and medications. Some patients may need multiple courses of treatment before they can make a full recovery.


What is Prescription Drug Addiction?

Prescription drug addiction is a type of substance use disorder (SUD) where an individual has developed an unhealthy dependence on prescription medications, and continues to use them even though they are causing negative consequences in their life. It refers to the act of taking prescription medications in a way that is not intended by the doctor.

This can occur when individuals take prescription drugs for an extended period of time, exceed recommended dosages, or use them for purposes other than what they were prescribed for.

Substance abuse is not limited to recreational use. When a person takes someone else’s medications or takes larger doses to make up for a missed dosage, these are also considered substance abuse.

Some common prescription drugs that can lead to addiction include painkillers, anti-anxiety medications, and sleeping pills. The individual may experience withdrawal symptoms when they try to stop taking the drug, and may have difficulty functioning without it.

Prescription drug abuse can affect anyone regardless of age, gender, race, etc. Identifying the problem ahead of time can prevent this problem from turning into a full-blown addiction.


Why Do People Abuse Their Prescription Medications?

Unlike other drugs, people take prescription medications to deal with certain conditions like chronic pain or anxiety. However, it is not immune to being abused. There are plenty of possible reasons why some people start abusing their medications.

Sometimes it starts off as a way to manage physical or emotional pain. People who suffer from chronic pain may abuse prescription medications to manage their symptoms. Some may also abuse prescription medications to manage emotional pain, such as depression or anxiety.

In these cases, drug abuse starts off innocently enough. People want to escape from their symptoms and so they begin misusing their medication by taking larger doses than they are supposed to. They are exposed to the euphoric and relaxing sensations caused by these drugs and end up getting hooked.

Part of the problem is the lack of awareness when it comes to the dangers of certain prescription drugs. Many people are not aware of the dangers of prescription drug misuse and the risks associated with taking these medications without medical supervision. They think just because these medications are given by their doctor there are no risks.

Another reason why so many people end up abusing prescription drugs is because of their easy availability. Prescription medications are easily available, either from their own prescriptions or from friends or family members.

Some people do not have access to other resources. People who struggle with addiction may abuse prescription medications because they do not have access to other resources for managing their symptoms, such as therapy or other forms of treatment. Eventually, these people get addicted, developing cravings for the drugs.

That said, there are also those who use it to feel high or escape reality. People abuse prescription medications to get a quick, euphoric high that helps them forget about their problems and reduce stress.

People have different reasons for abusing drugs, but some are more likely than others to get addicted. The more risk factors you have, the higher your chances of developing a substance use disorder later in life.

Risk factors for prescription drug abuse include: family history of substance abuse, early exposure to illicit drugs, past or present addictions to other substances, having co-occurring mental health disorders, peer pressure, and lack of knowledge about the potential dangers of drugs.

When taking any prescription drug, make sure to follow your doctor’s instructions carefully.

Adverse Effects of Prescription Drug Abuse

It goes without saying that abusing prescription drugs comes with an array of adverse effects, from physical health problems, to mental health issues, to social problems.

Addiction on its own is a huge problem. Over time, people who abuse prescription drugs can develop an addiction, which can be difficult to overcome. This medical condition is characterized by the compulsive intake of drugs or alcohol even when you are already struggling with the consequences.

Physical health problems associated with prescription drug abuse include: organ damage, respiratory depression, heart problems, and blood pressure changes. There is also the risk of overdose, which in some cases can be fatal.

Common mental health problems caused by prescription drug misuse include depression, anxiety, paranoia, delusions, and in some cases, hallucinations.

Grappling with addiction also leads to certain social problems as the person prioritizes the drug over everything else. Prescription drug abuse can lead to a breakdown in personal relationships, difficulties at work or school, and financial problems. Prescription drug abuse can result in criminal charges, including possession of illegal drugs, fraud, and doctor shopping.

It is also likely for the addicted person to develop drug dependence, which is a related but different medical condition characterized by withdrawal symptoms and intense cravings. People who stop taking prescription drugs after long-term abuse may experience intense withdrawal symptoms, such as nausea, vomiting, tremors, and seizures. It will be hard to quit without going through proper medical treatment.

It is important to note that these adverse effects can vary based on the type of prescription drug being abused, the dosage, and the frequency of use. When taken in high doses, prescription drugs can cause life-threatening effects, especially if combined with other substances like alcohol.

What is Rehab for Prescription Medication?

Rehabilitation for prescription medication refers to a treatment program designed to help individuals overcome dependency, abuse or addiction to prescription drugs. This type of rehab usually involves a combination of behavioral therapy, medication-assisted treatment, and other support services to help individuals achieve lasting recovery.

Behavioral treatments used in rehab include Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT), contingency management, and Dialectical Behavior Therapy (DBT). These behavioral treatments help patients recognize and change their unhealthy thought patterns.

The goal of rehab for prescription medication is not just to get the person sober but also to help them develop the skills and strategies they need to manage their substance use, reduce cravings, and prevent future relapse.

This may include a variety of approaches such as motivational interviewing, group therapy, and individual counseling. Medications like methadone and buprenorphine can be administered by medical professionals to manage withdrawal symptoms and reduce cravings.

For people addicted to prescription opioids, for example, naltrexone, methadone, and buprenorphine may be given to relieve withdrawal symptoms as the person’s intake is gradually lowered. This process is called medical detox.

Rehab aims to help the person achieve and maintain long-term sobriety. This usually requires continued support even outside of rehab, which is why aftercare is such an important part of treatment. The person in recovery can continue attending support groups so that they can receive emotional support from people who understand what they are going through. This allows them to stay on the right path.

Relapse is always a possibility, whether it’s an opioid addiction or something else. But patients can use a variety of strategies to avoid it. Even if they do relapse, help is always available so that they can go back to working on their long-term sobriety.

What to Expect from Prescription Medication Rehab

Some people struggling with prescription drug addiction are intimidated by the idea of going to rehab because they don’t know what to expect. But we’re here to fix that. Here are some things you might expect from prescription drug rehab:

Assessment: The first step in prescription drug rehab is a comprehensive evaluation of your physical and mental health, substance abuse history, and overall situation.

Detox: Detox is a crucial part of the prescription drug rehab process. It helps you to stop using the drug safely and get through withdrawal symptoms.

Therapy: Therapy is an essential aspect of prescription drug rehab. You will work with therapists to understand the root causes of your substance abuse and develop new coping mechanisms.

Medications: Depending on your needs, you may be prescribed medications to help you manage withdrawal symptoms, reduce cravings, and improve your overall mental health.

Group support: You will have the opportunity to attend group therapy sessions where you can connect with others who are going through similar experiences. Group support can provide valuable encouragement and motivation as you work to overcome your substance abuse.

Aftercare: After you complete prescription drug rehab, you will be provided with aftercare services to help you maintain your sobriety and continue to make progress.

Relapse prevention: You will learn about relapse triggers and how to avoid them, as well as how to recognize early warning signs of relapse. You will also develop a relapse prevention plan to help you stay on track.

It is important to note that every individual is different. People go through addiction differently. They have different needs and recovery goals. Rehab facilities are also different. Each rehab center will offer various programs or specialize in certain treatments. The key is to find the right one for the patient. The intake process mentioned above is a good way to determine what kind of treatment is right for the patient.

The Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) and the National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA) are great resources for all things addiction treatment-related. 

Look for an addiction treatment program near you today and start learning more about your treatment options. Help is always available to those who need it.

Rehab is Your Best Chance

Treatment is an addicted individualʼs best option if they want to recover. Beating an addiction not only requires eliminating the physical dependence, but also addressing the behavioral factors that prevent them from wanting to get better. Simply quitting may not change the psychological aspect of addiction. Some people quit for a while, and then take drugs or alcohol again, only to overdose because they did not detox properly. Recovery involves changing the way the patient feels, thinks, and behaves.


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Fel Clinical Director of Content
Felisa Laboro has been working with addiction and substance abuse businesses since early 2014. She has authored and published over 1,000 articles in the space. As a result of her work, over 1,500 people have been able to find treatment. She is passionate about helping people break free from alcohol or drug addiction and living a healthy life.

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