You blew out your knee and had to get surgery. During your recovery process, you took prescription pain killers, but you found that when you ran out, you still wanted more. You started taking Adderall in college to help you study. Now that school is over you still find yourself using the drug regularly. You suffer from chronic back pain. Your doctor gave you medication to help with the pain, but you’ve found that you need to take more to make the pain go away. These are all common signs of pill addiction that a lot of people overlook.
No two stories are the same, but these are all too common scenarios. Prescription pill abuse is on the rise in the United States. Our Pennsylvania drug rehab understands that using these drugs can get away from you, and addiction can develop before you realize it. So that you or your loved one can get proper prescription drug rehabilitation, we want to help you learn to recognize the signs of prescription drug addiction.
Signs of Pill Addiction by Drug
There are so many different prescription pills on the market, and they can have drastically different symptoms depending on the class of the drug and the individual drug itself. Below are lists of common pill addiction signs by drug type.
Signs Someone Is Addicted to Pain Pills
Pain pills include narcotics like opioids, which are known for their highly addictive nature. Common prescription opioids include hydrocodone (Vicodin), oxycodone (OxyContin), morphine, and oxymorphone (Opana).
Some signs someone is addicted to pain pills include:
- Mental confusion or disorientation
- Dilated pupils
- Abnormal sleep patterns
- Regularly taking the opioid in a way that’s not intended by the doctor who prescribed it
- Being unable to stop or cut down on drug use
- Taking opioids “just in case” even when they don’t feel pain
- Borrowing medication from others
- “Losing” their medications to get more prescriptions
- Seeking the same prescription from multiple doctors (doctor shopping)
Signs Someone Is Addicted to Stimulants
Central nervous system stimulants are drugs that “stimulate” the brain rather than depress it, like opioids or sedatives. Prescription stimulants include ADHD medications like Adderall and Ritalin, while illicit stimulants may include methamphetamine and cocaine.
Common stimulant abuse signs include:
- Noticeable increase in energy
- Restlessness or jitteriness
- Drastic weight loss
- Increased blood pressure and heart rate
- Dilated pupils
- Loss of appetite
- Using prescriptions more than prescribed
- Using illicit stimulants
- Exhibiting excessive energy or motivation
- Aggressive behavior or angry outbursts
- Mood swings
- Racing thoughts
- Anxiety or nervousness
Signs Someone Is Addicted to Sedatives
Also known as tranquilizers, sedatives or tranquilizers induce sedation by reducing irritability or excitement. Sedatives like benzodiazepines interact with chemicals like GABA in the central nervous system to produce a tranquilizing sensation.
Some people may have an addiction to sedatives or anti-anxiety medication. Be aware of the signs below.
- Slurred or slowed speech
- Impaired cognitive functions
- Impaired motor functions
- Poor impulse control
- Muscles shaking
- Lethargy or drowsiness
- Mental confusion or lack of concentration
- Poor coordination
- Slurred speech
- Craving the drug
- Needing a greater dose or more frequent doses to experience the same effects or a high
- Experiencing physical withdrawal symptoms
- Taking the drug even when it’s caused problems in the person’s life
Another way to recognize the signs of pill addiction is to look beyond the physical symptoms.
If your sister is always seeing new doctors for no apparent medical reason, she may need our prescription pill detox. If your son is showing extreme mood swings or is suddenly depressed, he might have a problem that needs professional attention. If your friend is starting to act deceitful, secretive, and withdrawn, he may be struggling with a co-occurring disorder. It is important to get detox in PA immediately so the drugs can be safely flushed from the person’s system.
When your loved one is displaying prescription drug addiction symptoms, you should get them help immediately. At Clearbrook Treatment Centers, we offer a nonjudgmental environment for people struggling with various substance abuse problems.