Am I Addicted to Painkillers?
According to the National Institute on Drug Abuse, young adults are the biggest abusers of prescription opioid pain relievers, stimulants, ADHD, and anti-anxiety drugs. More deaths occur from prescription drugs than any other substance, including cocaine and heroin combined in 2014. An estimated 1,700 young adults died from prescription drug overdoses.
How can you tell if you or a loved one are suffering from an addiction to painkillers? A line may have been crossed with the use of painkillers if:
- You are taking different amounts of your medication than prescribed by your doctor. Perhaps you’ve starting taking more pills with each dose or are taking doses more frequently.
- You are thinking about your medication a lot. If your attention is often going to the next dose of your medication or whether you have enough supply, it can often be an early indication of a problem.
- You begin bouncing from doctor to doctor or “doctor shopping.” When someone begins going to various doctors to get the same prescription filled it is a sign of a larger problem.
- You begin seeking prescription medications from other sources, such as ordering online, stealing, buying from others or on the streets, or injuring yourself to go to the hospital emergency room for a new prescription.
If you are concerned that a loved one is struggling with painkiller addiction, there are signs you should look for, including:
- Lack of energy or drowsiness
- Decrease in motivation and inability to concentrate
- Changes in social behavior
- Changes in appearance due to the use of opioids. This may include physical signs such as dilated pupils.
- They become secretive as a result of living a double life
Additionally, you should be on the lookout for signs of withdrawal which can be experienced when a person goes for an extended period of time without taking opioids. Signs of withdrawal include runny nose, yawning, nausea, vomiting, and diarrhea, severe insomnia, and “flu-like” symptoms.
The specialists at A New Start, Inc., are here to provide the treatment needed for you or a loved one struggling with painkiller addiction. Contact us today at 844.TALK.ANS to begin a road to recovery.