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Can Prescription Pills Be More Addictive Than Street Drugs?

Many people out there believe that the abuse of prescription drugs is safer than the abuse of illicit drugs such as heroin because prescription drugs are manufactured in regulated facilities and are prescribed by doctors. While this is true, it does not mean these drugs are safer or less addictive than street drugs. Even when prescription pills are taken as prescribed, they can be dangerous and can cause adverse physical and mental symptoms, so when they are taken not as prescribed they become that much more dangerous.

How Prescription Pills Affect Your Body

Prescription drugs can cause very powerful effects on the body and brain. Many even have the same dangers and strength as street drugs. Many prescription pills are very highly regulated and classed as Schedule II drugs because of their high potential for abuse that can lead to severe physical and psychological dependence. Opioid pain medication work on the same parts of the brain as heroin. Prescription stimulant drugs have the same effects as street drugs cocaine and methamphetamine.

Getting Addicted to Prescription Pills

Contrary to popular belief, prescription pills can be more addictive and deadly than illegal street drugs. Prescription pill abuse and addiction kill far more people in the United States each year than all of the illegal drugs combined. Even though doctors prescribe sedatives, painkillers, tranquilizers, and stimulants thousands of times a day, that does not mean they aren’t as addictive or less dangerous when they are used mistakenly. Even when abuse of prescription pills is not happening, they cause still cause serious problems. If they are mixed with other drugs or taken under the wrong conditions, the results can be deadly. Opiate and opioid-based prescription medications are considered to be the most addictive prescriptions on the market. Pills like these may also be more addictive than street drugs because they are easier to obtain. A doctor will give it to you, whereas street drugs like heroin may not be as easy to find to keep up with the habit. Often time’s prescription drugs are overprescribed and could be due to medical negligence. According to NIH:

Although most people take prescription medications responsibly, in 2017, an estimated 18 million people (more than 6 percent of those aged 12 and older) have misused such medications at least once in the past year. According to results from the 2017 National Survey on Drug Use and Health, an estimated 2 million Americans misused prescription pain relievers for the first time within the past year, which averages to approximately 5,480 initiates per day. Additionally, more than one million misused prescription stimulants, 1.5 million misused tranquilizers, and 271,000 misused sedatives for the first time.

Treatment for Prescription Pill Abuse

Addiction to prescription pills is just as, and if not more, serious as an addiction to street drugs like cocaine, heroin, or methamphetamines and should be treated as such. If you or someone you love is struggling with either a prescription pill addiction or a street drug addiction, just know that help is out there. Addiction is never an easy thing to face and the health risks are not worth a short high. Getting sober can be hard, but the rewards you will get in life are worth it. For your sake, you do not have to face getting off crystal meth on your own. Our admissions counselors and addiction professionals are available around the clock. We are ready to help you or a loved one overcome the disease of addiction. Now is the time to change your life. Let Evoke Wellness at Cohasset help you do it!