By Rose White Young
With the correct help, support and treatment it is usually very possible to overcome drug addiction particularly to prescription drugs and pain killers. Doctors prescribe patients certain drugs (such as pain killers) for ailments such as chronic back pain that could have an addictive component and should only be taken according to prescribed dosages. Some people become addicted to these drugs and start to self medicate and over prescribe. They think that they could not function normally without the “help” of these drugs.
Many people who do this are experiencing underlying emotional problems such as depression. I came across one person who was continuously taking pain killers for pain. He did have pain probably arthritic pain in his joints but he also had underlying depression. Unfortunately he was not able to publicly acknowledge he was suffering from depression. He undoubtedly needed to explore his chronic pain and should have been referred to a consultant. Taking pain killers daily on a continuous basis developed into a certain type of dependence. There was an addictive component in the pain killer that he was unaware of.
According to researches, prescription drugs rank second as the most commonly abused kind of drugs. Examples of these drugs are narcotic painkillers, which are commonly used by addicts in a way that wasn’t prescribed by their physician. The continued use of these drugs could lead to altered thinking and altered brain functions. The effects on the major organs are also devastating, especially on the liver, which is the major organ that synthesizes medication.
The abuse of prescription drugs and pain killers stem from depression: there may be inner conflicts that couldn’t be solved and the addict would then resolve to take these drugs in order to “heal” these conflicts. If the use is abruptly stopped, the addict may go into a severe withdrawal situation, or worse, shock which could then lead to death. There are a lot of consequences to face when a person who is addicted to these drugs suddenly stops. A person’s tolerance could also become worse and doses will continue to go up until it is fatal or until somebody finds out.
But recovery is not impossible; there are treatment options available for those who are addicted to prescription drugs and pain killers. Prescription drug addiction is becoming a big problem, and the numbers are steadily increasing. The first step to get a “clean” body is through medical detoxification. The addict is then made to undergo a series of assessment tests in order to find out which individualized program would work for him or her best. The approach to recovery is a holistic one, and most of the time, it is a long-term one.
Motivation and a will to recover is needed in order to keep the patient on the right track towards getting better and getting “clean”. The patient has to realize that he or she has developed an addiction to the drug because he or she thinks he cannot perform well without taking the drug. It is important to let the patient know that he is not alone in this battle; there are other people like him who know how he feels. It’s all about taking things one day at a time, until full recovery is achieved.