Many drugs that have psychoactive properties are useful in the treatment of various illnesses and symptoms and are often prescribed by doctors. These medications are abused when they are taken by someone other than the person for whom they were prescribed or when they are taken in a manner or dosage other than prescribed. When abused, prescription medications can be very addictive and have severe consequences and side effects.
The three main classes of prescriptions drugs that are abused are: opioid pain relievers such as Vicodin and Oxycontin, stimulants such as Adderall and Ritlin, and depressants such as Valium and Xanax. While these drugs are legal when prescribed by a doctor, they are often purchased illegally or stolen and abused.
Though the effects of these drugs can vary widely, they all create a pleasurable experience for the user by increasing the amount of dopamine available in pleasure pathways in the brain. Some people incorrectly think that these drugs are safer because they are a medicine, but this is only true when they are used in the prescribed manner.
If you feel you might be addicted to prescription drugs, call our toll-free, 24 hour helpline at 866.795.HOPE for a free screening. Serenity House offers personalized treatment programs for people suffering from a wide-range of drug and alcohol addictions. We help you detox from drugs and alcohol and give you the tools you need for a real and lasting recovery.