Does My Loved One Need Prescription Drug Rehab?
If someone you know is addicted to one or more types of prescription drugs, they should attend formal drug rehab. You may not be sure whether or not your friend or family member is truly addicted, but by making some careful observations, you can usually see if they have a severe problem. If they do, you may need to seek out prescription drug rehab on their behalf.
Behavioral Signs of Prescription Drug Addiction
Someone who is addicted to prescription drugs will exhibit many types of strange behaviors. They will often not act like themselves and, according to the NLM, they will have “a strong urge to use the substance and [will not be able to] stop, even if they want to.” This lack of control is a definite sign of addiction, and noticing it in your loved one will mean that they need prescription drug rehab. Other signs that they will exhibit if they need this type of treatment are:
- Neglecting their responsibilities, “missing work or school, or a decrease in performance”
- Becoming violent or hostile (especially if the individual is abusing prescription stimulants as this kind of behavior can cause “intense anger and paranoia” to the point of full-blown psychosis) (NIDA Teen)
- Abusing prescription drugs every day and while alone
- Making excuses in order to abuse drugs
- Building of a high tolerance for the drug and the continued abuse of it, especially when the dosage abused becomes higher and higher
- “Hostility when confronted about drug dependence”
- Activities that they once cared about no longer mattering
- Spending time only with others who abuse drugs and neglecting old friends
- “Continuing the use of drugs even when health, work, or family are being harmed”
Those who are severely abusing prescription drugs also have a tendency to do illegal things in order to get more. Prescription drug addicts might steal prescriptions or fake them, buy drugs that are only available by prescription, or do dangerous things in order to get more of the drug. If they crave one or more prescription drugs to this point, rehab is necessary.
Physical Signs of Prescription Drug Addiction
Someone who abuses prescription drugs will likely encounter many physical problems as a result of their abuse. If your loved one has overdosed on depressants, stimulants, or opioids (or another type of prescription drug), they may be addicted and could benefit from rehab, especially if they were in extreme danger. The NIDA states that prescription opioid and depressant overdoses can cause death, especially when combined with alcohol, and prescription stimulants in high doses can cause cardiovascular failure.
Other physical signs of prescription drug addiction are:
- Withdrawal symptoms
- Not necessarily a sign of addiction, but if the individual is already abusing prescription drugs and experiences withdrawal, it means that they are dependent which occurs along with addiction in drug abusers over time
- Chronic physical issues
- Like all other drugs, prescription medications can cause severe physical problems in those who do not use them properly. Each type of drug causes its own physical issues.
If you see these behavioral or physical symptoms in your loved one, they may need prescription drug rehab in order to stop, especially if they are unable or unwilling to stop on their own.