Prescription Drug Abuse is a Serious Problem That Deserves Help

According to the National Institute on Drug Abuse, about 1 in 4 people who take prescription painkillers for non-medical reasons will develop an addiction. The issue of prescription drug abuse is one that is often overlooked because it’s easy to think that since these drugs are prescribed by a doctor, they must be safe. 

But the reality is that prescription drug abuse is a real and growing problem in the United States. If you or someone you know is taking prescription drugs, it’s important to be aware of the signs of abuse so that you can get help before it’s too late. Prescription drugs are one of the leading causes of addiction and overdose in the US today. 

The good news? There is help. A prescription drug addiction is not a death sentence. With the proper care, you or someone you know can go back to living a healthy and drug free life. 

In this post, we will explore some of the most common signs of prescription drug abuse and what to do if you think someone you know may be abusing them.

What are the signs of prescription drug abuse?

If you are worried that you or someone close to you may be abusing prescription drugs, it is important to be aware of the signs and symptoms. Prescription drug abuse can have serious consequences, so it is important to get help if you think there is a problem. If you are not sure whether someone is abusing drugs, consider talking to a professional who can help you assess the situation and get the help that is needed.

The most common sign of prescription drug abuse is taking the medication in a way other than prescribed. This could mean taking more pills than prescribed, taking the medication more often than prescribed, or crushing and snorting pills that are meant to be taken orally.

Other signs of prescription drug abuse include change in mood or behavior, financial problems, relationship problems, and neglecting responsibilities. People who abuse prescription drugs may also have doctor shopping behaviors, meaning they visit multiple doctors to get multiple prescriptions.

While there are many types of prescription drugs that can be abused, there are three main types: opiates, stimulants, and depressants. While the symptoms above are common to just about all abused prescription drugs, perhaps the most dangerous prescription drugs that are abused are opiates. Just going by national data, opiates are responsible for an enormous amount of overdoses annually, and things have gotten worse during the pandemic. 


Signs of an opiate addiction may include: 

  • Constipation. Other GI tract issues include nausea 
  • Drowsiness, or “nodding out”, falling asleep at inappropriate times
  • Isolation 
  • Pupil constriction (tiny pupils) 
  • Emotional swings
  • Anxiety and depression, outbursts of anger
  • Difficulty concentrating and distraction, dissociation with surroundings
  • Stealing medications prescribed for other people

If you think you might be addicted, or think someone you know might be, it may be time to speak with a professional to get help. 

How To Get Help For Prescription Drug Abuse

If you or a loved one is struggling with prescription drug abuse, there are many resources available to help. Here are some ways to get started:


Talk to your doctor: If you’re concerned that you or a loved one may be abusing prescription drugs, talk to your doctor. He or she can help assess the situation and make recommendations about what to do to manage the situation.


Call a helpline: If you need someone to talk to outside of your doctor (some doctors in the past have been unscrupulous in prescribing prescription medications). Doctors have varying degrees of training with regards to addiction and substance abuse. Some will be more understanding than others. JourneyPure can help you with prescription drug abuse advice and treatment, call us at: (888) 985-2207


Contact a treatment center: There are many specialized treatment centers that can help those struggling with prescription drug abuse.  Many of these centers offer counseling, support groups, and other services to help people recover. JourneyPure has more than 10 centers throughout the Eastern U.S. We are part of a larger network of addiction treatment centers.

We can help you or the person you love get safely detoxed off of an addictive prescription drug and provide the treatment and support needed to stay sober for the long term. You’ll find a map with our locations here. You can contact us by phone at or via chat by clicking the green word bubble at the bottom right corner of the screen on our home page.

Get Help For Prescription Drug Addiction Today

The medical community now knows that addiction is a disease, rather than some kind of moral failing. And we all know that diseases can be treated. Like most other diseases, addiction can be effectively managed. But you need to get help— before it’s too late. 

If you or someone you know is abusing prescription drugs, give us a call. We can be reached at (888) 985-2207. We have many facilities throughout Appalachia and the south to serve you, and we are are looking forward to helping set you or your loved one free from addiction. 


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