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Prescription Drug Abuse Programs in Port Saint Lucie (772) 882-3919

Prescription drug abuse occurs when a person uses a legal prescription in a manner not prescribed by a physician. Those suffering from prescription drug abuse often take greater amounts of the drug, take it more frequently or use it not as prescribed. An example could include taking six painkillers a day instead of a recommended three or taking the stimulant Adderall without a diagnosis of narcolepsy or to enhance concentration.

In addition to marijuana, prescription drugs are the most commonly abused drugs in America by those ages 14 and older, according to the National Institute on Drug Abuse. Call Drug Treatment Centers Port Saint Lucie at (772) 882-3919 to get addiction treatment therapy today.

Common Drugs of Abuse

The most common drugs associated with prescription drug abuse fall in four categories: opioids, central nervous system (CNS) depressants (sedatives) and stimulants.

Opiates are prescribed to treat pain. These medications are highly addictive and include the following drugs:

  • Morphine
  • Codeine
  • Vicodin
  • OxyContin
  • Fentanyl

Sedatives or CNS depressants are used to to relieve anxiety. Examples of CNS depressants include diazepam (Valium), alprazolam (Xanax) and pentobarbital sodium (Nembutal).

Stimulants are used to treat conditions such as attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) or narcolepsy. Drug examples include amphetamines, such as Adderall, and methylphenidate (Ritalin and Concerta). Detroamphetamine (Dexedrine) is another example of a stimulant.

Signs and Symptoms of Prescription Drug Abuse

  • Symptoms of opioid abuse include: constipation, depression, decreased blood pressure, affected respiratory rate, confusion and lack of coordination.
  • Symptoms of sedative abuse include: sleepiness, confusion, difficulty walking, dizziness and poor judgment.
  • Symptoms of stimulant abuse include: unexplained weight loss, agitation, trouble sleeping, irregular heartbeat, impulsive behavior and restlessness.

What are the Different Categories of Prescription Drugs?

In 1970, the United States Congress passed the Controlled Substances Act (CSA), which classified drugs into “schedules.” A Schedule I substance is one that has a high potential for abuse and has no known medical function. These are illegal drugs, such as heroin, LDS and GHB.

Schedule II drugs are those that have high potential for abuse, but do have some medical purpose. Examples include fentanyl, OxyContin, amphetamines and hydrocodone.

Health Risks of Prescription Drug Abuse

Abusing prescription drugs can cause unwanted side effects, which can vary depending on the substance being abused. For example, opioid medications affect the portion of the brain associated with breathing. At its most extreme, opioid addiction can cause a person to stop breathing either temporarily or permanently. Even short-term hypoxia (lack of oxygen) can cause brain damage and even coma.

Abusing stimulants can cause irregular heartbeat, seizures, paranoia and even heart failure with prolonged abuse.

CNS depressants affect a person’s brain activity and can slow reflexes and coordination.

Treatment Medication

  • Suboxone is a combination of buprenophine and naloxone. This medication is used to treat withdrawals from opiate addiction. The naloxone portion of suboxone helps to reverse the effects of narcotic medications.
  • Although methadone is an opioid, those with substance abuse problems have used the medication with success for decades to reduce cravings associated with opioid abuse, as well as reduce withdrawal symptoms associated with taking pain relievers.
  • Naltrexone is a medication associated with relieving opioid medication abuse. While it blocks the effectiveness of other opioid medications, it does not reduce cravings for opioids. A person should not take naltrexone unless he or she has stopped taking opioids for two weeks.
  • Antabuse is a behavior modification drug used to encourage people to stop drinking alcohol. If a person takes Antabuse and has a drink, he or she will become very sick. Taking the medication is meant to deter a person from drinking again.
  • Neurontin or gabapentin is a medication doctors prescribe to reduce withdrawal symptoms associated with alcoholism treatment.
  • Doctors prescribe bupropion to reduce a person’s addiction to nicotine. In addition to this effect, bupropion reduces cravings for cigarettes.

Take the steps needed to begin your recovery from prescription drug abuse. Let Drug Treatment Centers Port Saint Lucie help you. Call us today at (772) 882-3919 and find out more about our drug treatment programs and services.

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