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Prescription Drug Abuse in Providence RI (401) 648-7636

Prescription drug abuse is when a person uses a drug in a manner other than which it was prescribed or uses a drug that has not been prescribed to them at all. Prescription drug abuse can lead to harmful health effects, among many other problems.

Common Drugs of Abuse

Opiates are the second-most commonly abused drugs after marijuana, according to the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA). Other prescription drugs abused include stimulants and tranquilizers, which are also called sedatives.

Examples of drugs that are abused in this category include:

  • Opiates, such as morphine, codeine, hydrocodone and oxycodone
  • Sedatives, such as Xanax, Ativan, Valium and Klonopin
  • Stimulants, such as Adderall and Ritalin

Signs and Symptoms of Prescription Drug Abuse

Symptoms a person may be abusing prescription drugs may include:

  • Appearing to be high, sedated or extremely energetic on a regular basis
  • Constantly "losing" prescriptions and going back to the doctor in an attempt to get more
  • Impulsive behavior
  • Poor coordination
  • Showing excess mood swings or unexplained hostility
  • Showing poor judgment
  • Stealing, forging or selling illegal prescriptions

What Are the Different Categories of Prescription Drugs?

The United States Congress passed the Controlled Substances Act (CSA) in 1970. This act divides illegal and legal drugs into categories or schedules. Each drug that is listed on the categories contains some form of controlled substance, such as codeine or opium.

Schedule I drugs are considered the most addictive while Schedule V drugs are the least addictive and have the lowest potential for abuse. Schedule I drugs have no known medical purpose and include heroin and peyote. Schedule II drugs are less addictive and have some medical purpose, such as methadone, oxycodone, morphine and hydrocodone.

Why Are Prescription Drugs So Addictive?

Prescription drugs can be addictive because they are designed to change brain chemistry. They can elicit pleasurable responses in the brain, such as pain or anxiety relief. With repeated use, the brain and body become accustomed to these chemicals. This can cause a person to experience drug cravings and withdrawal symptoms if he or she stops using the drug.

Treatment Options

Taking an individualized approach to a person's prescription drug abuse treatment is important to helping them successfully overcome their addiction.

If someone struggles with prescription drug addiction, help is available. Drug treatment centers in Providence will tailor a person's treatment regimen based on the drug used. Having an individualized plan can often equal greater results for the person. Addiction specialists at treatment centers are well-versed in withdrawal symptoms and treatments for each prescription drug.

Examples of withdrawal symptoms and available treatment options, if possible, include:

  • Adderall: Withdrawal symptoms can include extreme fatigue, depression, mental fog, anxiety, vivid dreams and difficulty sleeping.
  • Ambien: Withdrawal symptoms can include nausea, fatigue, irritability, stomach cramping, confusion, shakiness and difficulty sleeping.
  • Hydrocodone and other opiates: Withdrawal symptoms can include nausea, anxiety, panic attacks, muscle pain, flu-like symptoms, seizures and depression.

A doctor can prescribe medications in advance to treat opiate addiction, such as addictions to heroin, hydrocodone and oxycodone. Examples include methadone, which is most commonly prescribed to treat heroin addiction, and Suboxone, a medication used to treat opiate addictions.

For more information on treatment centers for prescription drug abuse, call Drug Rehab Providence RI at (401) 648-7636.

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