Symptoms of Different Modern Day Addictions

Symptoms of Prescription Drug Addiction

“Me, addicted? Don’t be silly. My doctor prescribed these drugs.”

In today’s world, prescription drug abuse is a common affliction. Many individuals who pop pills freely have no idea that their so-called doctor drugs can be just as addictive as the street variety. Help is available, but before it can be obtained, the sufferer needs to admit that he has a problem.

When it comes to identifying prescription drug addiction, some behaviors carry big red danger flags. All of them cry out for attention and follow-up.

Pill Borrowing

Prescription drug addicts can be opportunists. They will often take pills from someone else’s bottle even if they have to steal to get them. Medication does not simply disappear. Anyone whose supply has mysteriously dwindled should make a serious effort to find out where the missing meds have gone.

Obtaining Multiple Refills

The addicted patient will try to get refills on his original prescription long after the condition for which he took it has cleared up. Complaining of lingering symptoms, he will refuse to consider any other treatment options. He will insist that only the drug can help him, and he will return to the doctor repeatedly in an attempt to obtain it.

Doctor Shopping

When the physician who supplied the original prescription stops writing refills, the addicted patient can often panic. Desperate to get his hands on more of the drug, he may visit several doctors, hoping to get at least one copy of the coveted script from each. When this tactic finally fails, he might resort to buying his drug of choice on the street.

Prescription Drug Withdrawal

When a person has become completely dependent on a particular drug, missing even a single dose will cause withdrawal symptoms. Some will suffer night sweats and joint pain. Still others will believe that they are coming down with the flu.

Withdrawal from such opioids as Dilaudid, Vicodin and OxyContin will cause cold chills, insomnia, bone pain, diarrhea and vomiting. The termination of Librium, Xanax, Valium and other depressants of the central nervous system can lead to racing thoughts and even seizures.

The pain of these withdrawal symptoms increases desire for the drug even in people who honestly want to stop taking it.

Doubling the Dose

While a refill can temporarily alleviate symptoms of withdrawal, users gradually build up a tolerance to the medication. Soon, they require increasingly large amounts of it just to function normally. Doubling and tripling of the dose becomes common.

Anti-Social Behavior

As addiction increases, the sufferer will become obsessed with the drug, turning every stone and spending every penny to obtain it. This all-consuming preoccupation can result in a complete withdrawal from human contact. Many such addicts avoid friends and family at all costs.

What Can Be Done

Prescription drug addiction is an illness, and its treatment calls for both medical supervision and therapeutic counseling. Since early identification of the condition greatly improves the chances of a permanent cure, catching the symptoms early on can make all the difference.

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