Popping the Lid on Prescription Pills Addiction
Every year almost 5 million painkillers are being sold in America alone, this could connote that there are a lot of prescriptions going around to solve or mitigate pain. Unfortunately, the truth is, it includes the number of people who are addicted to pharmaceutical drugs.
The top most abused drugs in the world are painkillers, tranquilizers and stimulants. It’s alarming that despite the fact that these needs prescription to access, the trade is still happening. What’s worse is that a higher percentage of prescription drugs are sold because it is very easy to get a doctor to write a prescription.
But why is there a developing addiction to pharmaceutical drugs? As we have mentioned, these drugs are used to treat or target a certain type of problem. It becomes easy for a person to get hooked to something he takes every day to mitigate pain, especially the serious ones. They could get to a point that if they do not manage their intake they become dependent on the drug, increasing the dose just to ease the pain.
How come it was easy to access these types of medicines? There are different ways a prescription pill addict could access drugs:
1. By visiting multiple doctors. Sadly, even with the advent of technology, there are still medical practitioners who may not effectively track their patients. They could get second opinion on their problems and therefore, also get the chance to have a doctor write them up a prescription.
2. These drugs are available at home. Parents could have them in their medicine cabinets because they legitimately have medical concerns and these could be accessible to experimenting kids who could become easily hooked.
3. Family doctors. We do not say that the doctor in the family provides the prescription without proper assessment, but the thing is, they might have their prescription lying around and an addict could use it at his own disposal.
4. Cheaper alternative to illegal drugs. Admit it, prescription drugs are way cheaper compared to illegal drugs, plus the fact that you could carry it around without actually being caught unless with further inspection.
Now the real problem is how people get hooked on prescription drugs, which could be any of the following:
1. In an attempt to alleviate pain. If you have a very low tolerance to pain, then you might have taken painkillers a lot of times in your life. Now imagine someone who had to endure it every day. Take the case of Dr. House from the series House, he suffered a leg injury and had to take Vicodin for a period of time. He got dependent on the drug for the pain that he no longer know if his leg has already healed or if the pain he is experiencing is just his imagination. All he wanted to do was to take drugs.
2. To feel better. This is in relation to antidepressants. When you are clinically depressed you are advised to take antidepressants, now what people do not realize is they do not work on their own. You have to get yourself together, seek support and maintain contact with your family. If you rely solely on the drugs, it could give you temporary refuge but not a complete rehabilitation.
Certainly there is an amount of psychological addiction involved in this, the individual feels that he will not be able to function well without taking the drugs. That’s why sleeping pills have been very popular as well, because the cessation of the mind’s function is important to some.
However, we also believe that there are instances where people are made to take drugs, take for example the elderly in institutions who are taking pills every day for reasons they must have already forgotten. They could become dependent as well.
Now, the key in overcoming this type of addiction is awareness.
– Of the problem, if it exists and when it ceases to exist. We often rely on the medicines because we are no longer aware of the moments when we feel okay, but we are greatly reminded of how bad our situation is.
– Of the craving, and how to effectively manage it. The individual must be able to accept the fact that they need to know how to function normally without reaching for the next bottle of pill.
– Of the support they need and when to ask for help.
Addiction is a pandemic that slowly kills people. We need to be able to put a stop to it by being vigilant and constantly reassuring our loved ones that they will be able to overcome whatever situation they are going through.