Nearly any medication can be abused. The most abused prescription drugs typically provide a sense of euphoria or a “high” to the user–depressants, stimulants, and opioids. Opioids treat pain. Depressants treat anxiety and sleep problems. Stimulants treat conditions like ADHD.
The Most Abused Prescription Drugs Could Be in Your Medicine Cabinet
In 2010, 210 million people took prescription opioids. Some of the most common opioids prescribed are fentanyl, oxycodone, hydrocodone, hydromorphone, and diphenoxylate. Meanwhile, the most abused stimulants are amphetamines and methylphenidate. Depressants affect the central nervous system and include:
- Pentobarbital sodium
Drug Abuse Happens With Prescription Drugs
When most people think of drug abuse, they think of street drugs like heroin, cocaine, and marijuana. In reality, many prescription drugs are also abused. The most abused prescription drugs are normally given for a real medical condition. Your medicine cabinet probably contains these prescription medications.
Over time, the patient develops a tolerance and starts to abuse the drug. A painkiller addiction can develop after weeks or months of overusing pain medication. If used incorrectly, any drug can be harmful. Despite the myth that prescription drugs are safe, they can still lead to a pain pill addiction or overdose.
This class of drugs includes sedatives like pentobarbital. Normally prescribed for sleep and anxiety problems, they get misused by using too much or not following dosage directions. Over time, barbiturates can become addictive and lead to withdrawal symptoms.
Painkillers and Opioids
Painkillers, designed to dull pain, can cause a euphoric high in larger doses. Because of this, some patients may deliberately misuse their prescription and end up with a painkiller addiction. Oxycodone remains one of the most abused prescription drugs. Medications like percocet, oxycontin, roxicodone, and percodan contain oxycodone. Some people even crush the tablets to inject or snort it for a more extreme high.
People with ADHD obtain prescriptions for stimulants like dexedrine and adderall. Some people use amphetamines to boost their alertness and energy. Like many drugs, amphetamines become addictive when taken for an extended period of time or at an incorrect dose.
Getting Help from Addiction to the Most Abused Prescription Drugs
When someone has an addiction, they need help to recover. A detox facility helps to remove the chemical dependency and minimize withdrawal effects. It is never a good idea to detox alone because withdrawal effects can be dangerous. At a detox center, patients can get help with:
- Managing side effects
- Medical detox
- Ending an addiction
If you or a loved one has an addiction to prescription drugs, help is available. While many people assume prescription drugs are safer, they are just as addictive as street drugs. Detoxing at Serenity House Detox helps create the foundation for your recovery. To start recovery today, contact an experienced admissions counselor at 866-294-5306.