acquiesce - August 14th, 2020

Prescription Drug Abuse: How to Get Help

What is prescription drug abuse?

Prescription drug abuse is the use of a prescribed medication in a way that is not intended by the doctor that prescribed it. This can include anything from taking your own prescription drugs in a higher dose than advised to snorting ground up pills for a recreational high.

Prescription drug abuse is becoming an increasing problem and is one that is faced by all age groups, but teenagers and young adults in particular are being most affected.

Prescription drugs are abused for a number of reasons, including: 

  • To get high or feel good
  • To relax and relieve tension
  • To reduce appetite
  • To increase alertness
  • To maintain an addiction or prevent withdrawal symptoms
  • To improve focus and work performance 

Which drugs are most commonly abused?


As a result of their mind altering properties, the most commonly abused prescription drugs are opioids. These are used to treat pain and can include medications such as Oxycontin, Percocet and Norco.
Symptoms of taking opioids include: 

  • Feeling high (euphoria)
  • Nausea
  • Drowsiness
  • Confusion
  • Poor coordination
  • Slowed breathing rate
  • Constipation
  • Pain relief
  • Hypersensitivity to pain

Anti-anxiety Medications and Sedatives

These are used to treat anxiety and sleep disorders, and can include medications such as Xanax, Valium and Ambien.
Some symptoms of take these are: 

  • Drowsiness
  • Confusion
  • Poor coordination
  • Poor concentration
  • Memory problems
  • Dizziness
  • Slurred speech


These are used to treat attention deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) as well as sleep disorders. Stimulants can include Ritalin, Adderall XR, Mydayis and Dexedrine.
Symptoms of taking stimulants are:

  • Increased alertness
  • Feeling high
  • Reduced appetite
  • Insomnia
  • Agitation
  • Irregular heartbeat
  • High body temperature
  • Anxiety
  • Paranoia

Prescription PIlls

Can others tell if you have an addiction to prescription drugs?

Sometimes, your behaviour may indicate you are abusing prescription drugs. This behaviour can include:

  • Stealing, forging or selling prescriptions
  • Taking higher doses than recommended
  • Mood swings
  • Poor decision making
  • Frequently requiring refills early or ‘losing’ prescriptions
  • Seeking prescriptions from more than one doctor

For those suffering with an addiction to prescription drugs, they may feel embarrassed or be afraid of getting in trouble if they admit to abusing prescription drugs illegally.

At Acquiesce, we treat each individual without judgement and keep all cases confidential. If you think you may be addicted to prescription drugs, it is recommended by the NHS that you seek professional help from a treatment centre when quitting.

Acquiesce can arrange a confidential detoxification placement for you which supervises the quitting process and the withdrawal that follows, helping you to manage the symptoms and avoid a relapse.

We also understand that overcoming a drug addition isn’t always about battling the physical difficulties, but that addiction can derive from a psychological trigger that a detox alone cannot resolve. That is why we have different programmes to help target the physical, psychological, spiritual and social sides of your addiction using the latest evidence based interventions, alternative therapies and activities, delivered by our highly trained and experienced team. These include a combination of the 12 Steps and Cognitive Behavioural Therapy which compliment each other excellently. 

The 12 Step Programme has introduced long term support to many people. It uses 12 steps that allow individuals to learn and live by a new code of behaviour to aid their recovery. The steps support the person to accept that they have a problem and recognise that there is a solution. It helps them look at mistakes made in the past and how to make amends for them.

Cognitive Behavioural Therapy includes SMART Recovery, psychological interventions and positive psychology. These support an individual to gain skills, tools and resources to manage their addiction practically in the real world on a day-to-day basis.

For more information, click here to schedule a free, confidential consultation call today.

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