Prescription Drug Addiction: Definition

A better proportion of world’s population assume that drugs that are given by a doctor can never bear an obsessive compulsion very similar to that of alcoholic substances. However, statistics indicates otherwise. It is a fact that some of the medical drugs contains chemical substances which creates a feeling of pleasure in the brain, thus making an individual want it more and more. 

Prescription Drugs Addiction Definition

Actually, in most cases, none of us who have no background in pharmacy ever imagines that taking common over-the-counter drugs can sometimes be the source of all our current health misfortunes. For some of us hardly a day or week passes before swallowing a sedative, antidepressants, or stabilizer tablets without proper instruction from a certified expert. It should, however, come to light that longstanding utilization of stimulants might lead into severe addiction.

Strong obsession towards the utilization of those drugs given to you earlier by a qualified doctor describes the terms prescription drug addiction quite well. It is quite common among persons with stubborn health conditions, like cancer, for patients to be recommended to take a special dosage of tablets which is renewable after some given time, usually when you take all of the initial prescription.

The World Health Organization (WHO) estimates that the greatest number of persons suffering from this disorder often utilize narcotics or sedative drug substances. Just like alcoholism and other substance abuse disorders, this kind of dependence does not have a particular cause. It can be wrong to conclude that only long term uses cause someone to become addicted. Sometimes one might use them for just a month and then dependence encroaches. The entire obsession aspect begins with the brain perceiving the chemical substances contained within the medicine to be of great pleasure. 

Prescription Drugs Addiction Definition

Lots of people who are affected by this condition suffer one major symptom, which is the continuous craving for a particular drug substance. The feeling can sometimes be so strong that when not fulfilled the subjected person may have headaches and feel sad, restless, depressed, and sometimes generally weak. If not looked into quick enough, the situation may worsen, thus yielding other co-occurring illnesses. 

Sometimes acquiring addiction might not be one’s will. If you find yourself in this situation what do you do? Well, different special health centers, such as rehab centers, have set up excellent facilities they use to help people recover from drowning in addiction. A doctor will help you find the best hospital that would offer absolute assistance to you.  

Prescription Drug Abuse and Addiction Statistics 

Recent data according to the WHO indicate that there is a significant rise in the number of persons affected by this condition. Also, it shows in the records that new medical tablets are manufactured every year to address human health problems. 

Prescription Drug Abuse and Addiction Statistics

This, therefore, means that the more these substances get into the market, the more addicts will be recruited on a daily basis. It is now within the hands of the Ministry of Health to look into the utilization of some of these pharmacological materials and create some legislature to manage them.  

As much as “self-medication” is never advisable, the hardship of  the current world’s economy has lead people into that. Today, lots of people are not willing to spend lots of money making appointments with doctors when they only have headaches. Instead, they would rather walk into a nearby pharmacy and buy some painkillers – which is not illegal in any way.

The real cause towards this condition is not yet well defined/established. Theories based on some research studies indicate that it involves the mental state and also the health state you live with. If one is living with cancer, then their body environment is cancerous, thus you will be a living a life of consuming drugs on a daily basis. If you have ever read on how other stimulant substances works within the brain, then understanding this concept would be much easier. Whenever the brain senses sweetness or pleasure from ingesting a certain material or performing a certain, it gives the body a responsive feeling of excitement.

Prescription Drug Abuse and Addiction Statistics

This means, by consuming highly stimulating stuff, your brain will automatically make a connection between that substance and pleasure/reward, and thus would form a craving sensation which if not correctly managed might lead into extra co-occurring health complications. Same thing occurs when taking doctor prescribed drugs.  This can be even worse if they are taken with other influences, such as liquor. The dependence can escalate to highly severe levels. Everyday, all the time, you will be craving these substances. 

Further studies on this topic indicate that people at highest risk of acquiring this syndrome are younger. Why? Most of them are out on adventurous missions. They will want to try out so many things while at parties or just out hanging out with friends. Due to peer pressure, most of them are inducted into the drug misuse which adversely affects their well-being and interferes with their schooling. The most common drugs they utilize include Oxycodone and Vicodin

Prescription Drug Abuse and Addiction Statistics

In every addiction beginning phase, experimentation comes first and with youths, this occurs quite easily. WHO studies reveal that about 90% of youths addicted to these drugs mainly got into it to feel ease from their burdens. The explanations may, however, be dissimilar based on an individual. And like alcoholics, this category of addicts always crave medical drugs every moment they feel low, sad and stressed. 

The finest solution regarding this condition is seeking early medical assistance. Obsessive compulsion towards drugs is a serious yet treatable condition which needs to have an early diagnosis in order to get an easier recovery. As such, we shall be able to keep the high rate of addiction under control. 

Subjective Ill-Health Indicators and Phenomenon 

As expected, this chronic condition comes with its own ill-health indicators that one can use to make a quick diagnosis of themselves. Despite being a single syndrome, its symptoms manifest differently for various persons – this is all about personal gene structure. 

Health Indicators and Phenomenon 

The increasing trend, however, is that persons suffering with such a condition likely lack proper education, since most individuals affected are youths. Addiction is not a gender or age discriminating issue and its levels can extend further than one might think. 

Below are its common indicators when it manifests:

  • Withdrawing from social activities: Individuals abusing these drugs are afraid of letting their family or close friends know what they are going through. This means that they try as much as possible to avoid social gatherings and any activities that may reveal their addiction. As long as the victim continues hiding their addiction, their conditions worsens and helping them may require the assistance of an expert therapist. These persons will most likely demonstrate these signs in the initial phase of addiction
  • Increased utilization of drugs:  Normally this condition results when one continues using those medicines even after the sickness or ailment went long ago. The victim may increase the amount of dosage past the prescribed amount. Most individuals may raise their intake of painkillers like Vicodin or Oxycontin when healing from a painful wound. Increased intake of such painkillers leads to addiction, and one may end up consuming the drugs even after the wound or pain is fully healed. Or the wound or pain may be healing but whoever is using the drug keeps on consuming more than the prescribed amount. This is an indication of addiction that requires the attention of a rehab facility. 
  • Attitude change: some victims may end up being hypersensitive to any form of criticism. The victim avoids any discussions relating to the drug obsession. When victims reach this level of not wanting any discussions on drug abuse, it is a perfect time to seek help from an expert. 
  • Visiting a health expert minus proper reason: Victims tend to remain vigilant in their mission towards getting a valid instruction to purchase the particular drug substance. The victim visits doctors or pharmacists located away from home to find the material of dependence. They may also develop “fake pains” just to get prescriptions from pharmacists. The worsening of this craving can influence the victim to find all possible ways of acquiring their drug of choice, some of which may be illegal.

Highly Abused Prescription Drugs

These are so many, however, the most frequently used ones comprise of Oxycodone, Roxicodone, Vicodin, Lortab, Dexedrine, stimulants, Concerta, Opioids, Norco, Codeine, Demerol, Fentanyl, Methylphenidate, and many others. Most of these substances can easily be accessed by individuals without any certified instruction from an expert. They exhibit diverse features and influence the victims in various manners. The subjective ill-health indicators and related phenomenon relating to this condition vary depending on an individual’s body physiology. 

It’s difficult to state the exact type of drugs misused in varied locations. Despite being expensive, addicts always find ways to get their drug, no matter the price attached to them. However, the drugs with high rates of misuse are those that are easily accessible since they do not necessarily require a doctor’s prescription. 

Prescription Drugs Addiction: Opioids

It is notably the most commonly used narcotic in the world. There are many types of it existing in the pharmaceutical industry. Opioids exist naturally in the opium poppy plant. The chemical structure of the opium poppy plant is used by scientists to manufacture artificial opioids in the laboratory. The chemical content of opium kills pain while relaxing one’s body. Some of it can be used in treatment procedures for diarrhea or coughing. In most cases, it is used to relieve minor pains from the body.

Prescription Drugs Addiction

The medications containing opioids  mainly comprise of morphine, fentanyl and codeine, though numerous others exist . Large proportions misuse these type of medications without realizing the possible harm afterwards. Because most elderly people are prone to chronic infections, they are the most likely to abuse opioids. Health impacts of abusing opioids are that they raise the chances of contracting chronic infections. For pregnant mothers, the use of opioids can result in newborns having ill-health indicators related to withdrawal. 


It is utilized by lots of patients towards relieving mild discomfort. Codeine may be utilized as a pain reliever or a substance that makes someone feel high. Lots of individuals abusing the drug enhance their chances of apathy, respiratory failure, blindness, constipation, euphoria, and drowsiness. Codeine’s after-use impacts may seem harmless to most victims until their condition gets worse. It is advisable to seek medical assistance if one can no longer live without taking the drug even after the ailment is long gone.


It is a narcotic medicine normally related to opioids. Many people use the drug to relieve themselves from both mild and severe pains. When one uses the drug excessively, they may acquire an obsession. Being a narcotic, oxycodone exhibits similar addictive aspects as other medicines in the equivalent category. 

Newborns show negative ill-health indicators if their mothers were using this drug while expectant. This means that lactating and expectant women should avoid excessive use of oxycodone given its health impacts on a newborn. Getting a certified doctors’ instruction before using this medication is important in ensuring safety from the after-use impacts of it. Most individuals using this drug have reported slow or abnormal breathing, drowsiness, nausea, vomiting, confusion, seizure, slow heart rate, as well as many other impacts. The medication should not be given to children.


Demerol as an opioid is used by most individuals to find relief from mild pain. It is a type of opioid prescribed to a patient by a physician if the patient does not show any progress with a non-opioid being administered to them. Excessive use of it can lead to health complications or even death. Most physicians would prescribe Demerol for individuals suffering from asthma or those with difficulty breathing. 

There is a variation in the after-use impacts of this medicine from individual to individual. Mostly, it affects the respiratory tract, thus introducing inhalation difficulties to an individual. Alcoholics should avoid using the drug unless advised by their physicians. 


Individuals facing severe or chronic pain prefer using Fentanyl to find relief. This is the main reason why the drug is abused. Also, the fact that it is readily available makes it even more prone to abuse. It is among the most abused opioids. For short-term pain, most physicians may not prescribe this drug given its major side effects. While the drug is the most useful painkiller in the pharmaceutical market today, it cannot be used by anyone with a chronic infection in the digestive tract. Also, if a patient is using other forms of opioids, Fentanyl cannot be prescribed for use. The drug may affect normal breathing in an asthmatic person. Therefore, it should be used with care. 

Fentanyl side effects include pounding heartbeats, severe chest pains, shallow breathing, drowsiness, and nausea. Most individuals abuse fentanyl drugs because of their ability to relieve one from severe pain. Often fentanyl addiction results when one continuously uses the drug even after their prescription has expired and they no longer have pain. Note that those who have used Fentanyl in the past may use it once they are in pain again even without their doctors’ prescription. When this happens, they usually end up becoming addicted to the drug.

Central Nervous System (CNS) Depressants 

This type of drug can be used to slow down brain activity or the functioning of the Central Nervous System (CNS). When these categories of drugs are used without doctors’ prescription, they can cause motor coordination problems, impaired judgment, dizziness, and general confusion. The drugs should only be used under a physician’s supervision to avoid the fatalities associated with its overdose. When the drug is used in excess, it can reduce the pulse rate and result in cardiac arrest. CNS depression symptoms range from one person to another depending on their health status. For instance, asthmatic individuals may often experience severe effects of the drug when used without a prescription from a doctor.


Nembutal is also known as pentobarbital sodium and is mainly administered to the body by injection. In most cases, physicians will prescribe the drug as a CNS depressant used to normalize the functions of the brain. Continued use of the drug can often result in addiction. When one is addicted to the drug, they often tend to use it even without the prescription from a physician. Note that, when the drug is administered to an expectant woman it may result in miscarriage. The drug should only be used as prescribed and excess dosage avoided until the next physician appointment. 


Valium is also known as diazepam. It is used to treat seizures, anxiety and alcohol withdrawal. The drug is commonly used by doctors to provide a sedation effect before a medical procedure is carried out. Valium usage should be taken seriously as any dosage contrary to a physician’s prescription can be fatal. Valium side effects vary from one individual to another, and are often associated with excessive dosages and use of a drug without the prescription from a certified physician.


This is a benzodiazepine drug used to relieve patients from anxiety. Given that anxiety can cause depression, most individuals prefer using the drug to relieve themselves from unnecessary anxiety. This drug should not be used by expectant women as it may increase the chances of getting a miscarriage. Also, children are not advised to use the drug. Note that as a sedative, the drug may last longer in the patient’s blood and cause side effects such as nausea and dizziness. 

Why Do People Abuse Prescription Drugs? 

Prescription drugs are mostly abused by individuals lacking knowledge on the use of the drug. Given that most individuals use prescription drugs to relieve themselves from severe pain, it is needless to mention that the prescription drugs are mainly abused because of their accessibility. Most individuals abuse the drugs without knowing.

Prescription Drugs Addiction

Prescription drugs have medicinal value. Most individuals using the drug think they cause no harm to the body until they are addicted to the drug. While recreational drug abuse may not sound sensible, it is surprising that most teenagers have fallen into the trap of abusing such drugs due to a curious desire to do what they see their peers doing.


Prescription drugs are mostly available over-the-counter. The obsessive addiction bit of it results when one continuously uses the medicine even after healing, despite there being no significant reason to continue using the drug. Prescription drug use is similar to other types of medication and substance abuse, given that they all cause severe health risks to the affected victims. It is important that one only use hospital medications as per the offered instructions. 

Treatment of this condition can be done in medical rehabilitation centers. Often, it is advisable that one considers the best rehabilitation center close to them whenever they resort to getting rehabilitation medication services. Note that, the cost of buying them may be low, but the cost of treating the effects resulting from their abuse is relatively high. Therefore, one should consider proper use of the medications as per the physician’s recommendations.

Remember, early diagnosis is of great importance given that the intensity of this illness progresses with time. 


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