It can be argued that prescription drug abuse is a more severe problem than recreational drug abuse. Many people make the assumption that prescription drugs aren't as dangerous as illegal drugs because prescription drugs are prescribed by a doctor.
It's important to understand that any drug can be deadly if it is abused or used incorrectly. Statistics show that prescription drug overdoses actually cause more deaths than overdoses from illegal drugs like cocaine and heroin.
The following are six tips on how you can take drugs your doctor prescribes safely without developing any addiction problems:
Ask a family member to help you take your medicine
People are more at risk of developing an addiction to a prescription drug when they're handling that drug independently.
If you ask someone you're close to and trust- ideally a spouse or family member- to administer a drug to you, that person will know how much you're consuming. They'll know if you're starting to develop a problem. Because of this, it will be more easy for you to stay in control over the drug.
The person who administers your medicine can keep it in their possession so that you are unable to take more than prescribed without them knowing.
Follow your prescription exactly
You need to be disciplined and conscientious when you're taking a drug. Don't allow yourself to miss a dosage and take extra to make up for it later. Also, don't allow yourself to take some extra pills because you feel that your symptoms are extra severe.
Communicate openly with your doctor
If you feel that you're beginning to develop an addiction, talk about it immediately with your doctor. Talking about it and immediately addressing the issue is the best way to overcome the feeling and prevent serious problems down the road.
Take painkillers if you need them
Some people develop addictions because they initially try to avoid their painkillers out of fear of becoming addicted. Then, the pain becomes so severe that they are driven to take painkillers in excess.
If you have concerns about taking painkillers, discuss them with your doctor rather than simply avoiding the painkillers without telling your doctor.
Know the facts regarding your prescription medications
You should be aware if you're taking a prescription medication that is known for causing addiction problems. In general, painkillers, stimulants and antidepressants are the types of drugs that are known to be the most likely to cause addiction problems.
Discuss any past addiction problems with your doctor
Patients who have struggled with alcohol or drug abuse issues in the past are the most likely to become addicted to prescription drugs. Therefore, it's a good idea to bring up these past issues with your doctor.
Your doctor may be able to prescribe you a less addictive prescription drug or therapy option so that you can avoid the risk of struggling with addiction problems again. Click here to learn more about substance abuse treatment.