Prescription drug detox, although very uncomfortable and sometimes even painful, is not life-threatening. When an individual is abusing prescription drugs, it can be difficult to stop. Many people are unaware of how easy it is to develop an addiction to prescription drugs. Although many individuals feel these drugs will not be a problem since a doctor prescribes them, they can often lead to abuse. Dualdiagnosis.org reports that anytime a person uses a prescription drug for nonmedical reasons, it is drug abuse. According to dualdiagnosis.org, there are three primary categories of prescription drugs, which are opioid pain relievers, stimulants, and depressants.

Among the most abused prescription drugs are:

  • Opioids such as Fentanyl and Hydrocodone
  • Depressants such as Xanax and Valium
  • Stimulants such as Adderall and Ritalin

Prescription Drug Abuse Statistics

According to drugabuse.org, an estimated 6.1 million individuals in the United States have used prescription drugs for non-medical purposes in the past month. This statistic is alarming, but there are many more prescription drug abuse statistics that should raise cause for concern, which include:

  • 52 million individuals in the United States over the age of 12 have used prescription drugs for non-medical purposes at least once in their lives.
  • 54.2 percent of people in the United States received prescription drugs for free from a friend or family member.
  • 3.9 percent of individuals in the United States bought prescription drugs from a drug dealer.
  • There were enough prescription pain pills prescribed in 2010 to medicate every adult in the United States for 4 hours a day for a month.
  • Every day an estimated 2,500 adolescents in the United States abuse prescription pain pills for the first time.
  • Deaths that were caused by prescription drugs were higher than heroin, methamphetamine, and cocaine overdose deaths combined in the United States in 2005.
  • The Drug Enforcement Administration reports that Fentanyl, which is 30 to 50 times more potent than heroin, was responsible for more than 1,000 deaths in the United States in 2013.

It is relatively easy for an individual to obtain prescription drugs without a prescription. This is why prescription drug abuse has become such a prevalent problem in the United States.

Withdrawal Symptoms that Accompany Prescription Drug Detox

When an individual makes the decision to seek help and stop taking prescription drugs, he or she will encounter withdrawal symptoms. Some of these withdrawal symptoms can be dangerous, which is why it is crucial to seek treatment for prescription drug detox. Withdrawal symptoms from prescription drug use can include:

  • Headaches
  • Diarrhea
  • Depression
  • Insomnia
  • Hallucinations
  • Anxiety
  • Muscle tension
  • Seizures

Withdrawal symptoms are uncomfortable and can cause extreme cravings. By seeking treatment, an individual has a better chance of staying free from drug use after going through detox.

Treatment Options

There are many reasons an individual should seek treatment if he or she has a prescription drug addiction. An individual should not try to go through prescription drug detox on his or her own, which can be dangerous and probably lead to relapse. There are inpatient and outpatient treatment programs for those with prescription drug problems

Although both can be effective ways to treat prescription drug addiction, an inpatient treatment facility will increase the chances of a long-term recovery. Inpatient treatment programs are ideal for those with prescription drug problems. In an inpatient treatment center, a medical staff is available 24 hours a day to provide support. Medical professionals are on hand to deal with withdrawal symptoms and prescription drug detox. They can help an individual get through uncomfortable situations that arise from detox. When a person is in an inpatient rehabilitation facility, he or she is far less likely to relapse. There are certain triggers, such as people, places, and situations, which can cause a person to relapse. An inpatient treatment facility will keep an individual away from these triggers. Staying away from triggers increases the chances of a lifelong recovery.

Outpatient treatment programs are also available to those with prescription drug problems. Outpatient treatment programs are not as effective as inpatient treatment programs. However, they can still help an individual overcome his or her drug problem. Outpatient treatment facilities offer some of the same benefits as inpatient centers. These include individual and group therapy as well as long-term counseling options.

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