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Understanding prescription drug abuse

Prescription drug addiction is the largest growing drug epidemic in the United States. The Center for Disease Control reported that there were 48,982 drug overdose deaths in 2013 with prescription drug abuse accounting for over half of them. This rate has quadrupled since 1999. The prescription drug abuse epidemic has increased across all demographics and despite the efforts of pharmaceutical companies and law enforcement to lessen the issue, it still continues to rise.

The American Society of Interventional Pain Physicians (ASIPP) reports that Americans consume 80 percent of the world’s pain medication, despite the fact that it holds only 4.6 percent of the world’s population. This alarming statistics helps paint a clearer picture the magnitude of this issue in comparison to the rest of the world.

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Commonly abused prescription drugs

Some users receive their prescription drugs through dealers and others practice “doctor shopping,” visiting several doctors to obtain copious amounts of pharmaceuticals. Unfortunately, the addiction doesn’t always stop there. Many prescription drug users move on to heroin because it costs less and produces a similar high. The makers of the popular pain medication OxyContin, even changed the formula to better prevent users from abusing it, but the result was an increase in heroin use. Addiction affects one in 10 of Americans and leaves millions morally and financially bankrupt, leading many addicts to take even more desperate measures to get their fix.

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Common signs of prescription drug addiction

Prescription drug abuse or addiction can seriously affect a person’s thinking, actions, judgement and more. While different types of prescription drugs will create different symptoms it is important that one be able to recognize some of the most common symptoms of prescription drug abuse. These can include:

  1. Changes in sleeping patterns
  2. Changes in appetite
  3. Increased isolation
  4. Changes in mood marked by either increased aggression or an excessively happy mood
  5. Deteriorating physical health

We can help get you the care you need

The Florida Prescription Drug Addiction Helpline is committed to helping those who struggle with prescription drug addiction find appropriate treatment options. Florida is home to many of the country’s leading drug addiction treatment centers and offers a plethora of options to those seeking recovery. If you know someone who is struggling with prescription drug addiction and is in need of treatment, please contact the Florida Prescription Drug Addiction Helpline at 866-292-3211. A representative will assist you in finding the right treatment in your area.

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