Being Addicted to Prescription Drugs and How to Break Free

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being addicted to prescription drugs

You have a malady—chronic pain, insomnia, anxiety, or some such issue—you go to the doctor and you come out with a prescription in hand. This is the usual routine we have all become accustomed to. We go to the doctor and he or she will provide us with some type of prescription medication that will offer us relief.

What is becoming increasingly clear in recent years, however, is the powerful addiction potential of these go-to prescription meds. What may now be commonly understood, ten years ago was still a mystery. Many people have learned from their own personal experience just how addicting prescription painkillers and benzodiazepines really are. Being addicted to prescription drugs presents a life-altering challenge that takes professional intervention to unwind.

Whether a prescription medication is acquired and used for purely legitimate reasons, or if the drugs are obtained illicitly for recreational misuse or abuse, the end result is the same. Addiction is the result of adaptations made by brain chemicals, neural pathways, and the impact on the central nervous system, which develops over a period of time. This is true for synthetic opioids, benzodiazepines, and stimulants, all containing highly addictive properties. When being addicted to prescription drugs begins to impact your daily life, relationships, career, and finances, consider beginning the recovery process with a monitored detox program.

What Are the Most Addictive Prescriptions Drugs?

When a doctor prescribed a medication they take into account both the benefits and risks to the patient. Because each person is uniquely wired, it is not usually predictable who will or will not possibly become addicted to a medication. While some people can use a prescription painkiller for a couple of weeks following surgery or a serious injury with no adverse effects, another might find themselves already addicted after two weeks of use.

Here are the prescription medications with the most significant addiction potential:

Opioids (analgesics)

  • Oxycodone (OxyContin)
  • Meperidine (Demerol)
  • Codeine
  • Fentanyl
  • Hydrocodone and acetaminophen (Vicodin)
  • Opana (time-released opioid for chronic pain)
  • Hydromorphone (Dilaudid)
  • Oxycodone with acetaminophen (Percocet)

Benzodiazepines (sedatives)

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  • Alprazolam (Xanax)
  • Diazepam (Valium)
  • Clonazepam (Klonopin)
  • Lorazepam (Ativan)


  • Amphetamine/dextroamphetamine (Adderall)
  • Methylphenidate (Ritalin)
  • Lisdexamfetamine (Vyvanse)

Signs of a Prescription Drug Abuse and Addiction

Certain behaviors or behavior patterns are common in individuals who are abusing prescription pain medication or have become addicted to one. Specific symptoms of addiction will differ depending on the drug but the commonalities include:

  • Increased tolerance, leading to taking more of the drug
  • Requesting frequent refills of the drug
  • Mood swings
  • Changes in eating and/or sleeping habits
  • Weight gain or loss
  • Irritability
  • Doctor shopping
  • Stealing pills from friends or family members
  • Buying prescription pills off the street or via an online source
  • Obsessive about the next dose, keeping enough supply on hand
  • When attempting to stop the drug, experience withdrawal symptoms

What is a Detox?

When someone makes the decision to break free from the addiction, the first step in the recovery process is to undergo detoxification, whereby the body purges all the related toxins and chemicals over a period of days. Some may make the error of attempting this important step on their own, which will likely result in relapse back to the drug to escape the withdrawal symptoms.

Being addicted to prescription drugs leaves the brain in an altered state, so during detox, as the body attempts to adjust to the absence of the drug, the person will experience physical, psychological, and behavioral withdrawal symptoms. In a detox, there are detox specialists on hand 24/7 to monitor vital signs and provide medications that will greatly ease many of the unpleasant symptoms. With this support, the individual is much more likely to succeed in their goal to get clean and sober so they can then begin the addiction treatment program.

How to Break Free From a Prescription Drug Addiction

As big of an accomplishment as making it through detox and withdrawal is, it is just the beginning of the recovery process. After a successful detox, the individual is ready to embark on a recovery journey where they will learn how to change their entrenched addictive behaviors, as well as process any deep-seated emotional issues and learn useful recovery tools to access moving forward. Whether the individual selects an inpatient or an outpatient rehab, the goal is the same—regain control over your mind and your life.

Executive 7 Day Detox Can Help Launch Recovery From Prescription Drug Addiction

Executive 7 Day Detox provides a safe, supported detoxification program designed with the busy professional in mind. At Executive 7 Day Detox, clients will find themselves immersed in a caring and supportive environment enjoying luxurious accommodations. The detox and withdrawal process will be monitored and managed by trained detox specialists who will ease symptoms and minimize discomfort. Being addicted to prescription drugs doesn’t have to permanently alter your future. Make a change today and contact Executive 7 Day Detox at (800) 381-0827.


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