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Prescription Drug Rehab

Destin Recovery Addiction Treatment Center

Prescription Drug Rehab in Florida

prescription medicationMost people think of illegal drugs when they hear the word “addiction”. However, prescription drug addiction is becoming a serious public health problem in the USA and many other nations. Prescription medication abuse was described as “an epidemic” by researchers from the University of Nebraska Medical Center College of Medicine in a study they reported on in November 2012.

The scientists explained that doctors today treat pain differently than they used to years ago. This change has led to an increase in prescription drug abuse.

In recent years, there has been a dramatic increase in prescription drug misuse or abuse.

This increase has led to a corresponding increase in admissions to drug treatment programs for drug addictions. Most of us take prescription drugs only for the reason the doctor intended. Nevertheless, an estimated 48 million people (aged 12 and older), according to the National Institute on Drug Abuse, have used prescription drugs for non-medical reasons in their lifetime. That figure represents approximately 20% of the U.S. population.

According to the National Institute on Drug Abuse, years of research have shown that addiction to any drug (illicit or prescribed) is a brain disease that can be treated effectively. Treatment must take into account the type of drug used and the needs of the individual. Successful treatment may need to incorporate several components, including detoxification, counseling, and sometimes the use of addiction medications (see Dr. Reeves video on Suboxone HERE). Multiple courses of treatment may be needed for the patient to make a full recovery.

The two main categories of drug addiction treatment are behavioral and pharmacological. Behavioral treatments help patients stop drug use by teaching them strategies to function without drugs, deal with cravings, avoid drugs and situations that could lead to drug use, and handle a relapse should it occur. When delivered effectively, behavioral treatments, such as individual counseling, group or family counseling, contingency management, and cognitive behavioral therapies, also can help patients improve their personal relationships and their ability to function at work and in the community.

Although a behavioral or pharmacological approach alone may be sufficient for treating some patients, research shows that a combined approach may be best for long term recovery with no relapse.

From the Director National Institute on Drug Abuse

The nonmedical use and abuse of prescription drugs is a serious public health problem in this country. Although most people take prescription medications responsibly, an estimated 52 million people (20 percent of those aged 12 and older) have used prescription drugs for nonmedical reasons at least once in their lifetimes. Young people are strongly represented in this group. In fact, the National Institute on Drug Abuse’s (NIDA) Monitoring the Future (MTF) survey found that about 1 in 12 high school seniors reported past-year nonmedical use of the prescription pain reliever Vicodin in 2010, and 1 in 20 reported abusing OxyContin—making these medications among the most commonly abused drugs by adolescents.

The abuse of certain prescription drugs— opioids, central nervous system (CNS) depressants, and stimulants—can lead to a variety of adverse health effects, including addiction. Among those who reported past-year nonmedical use of a prescription drug, nearly 14 percent met criteria for abuse of or dependence on it. The reasons for the high prevalence of prescription drug abuse vary by age, gender, and other factors, but likely include greater availability.

The number of prescriptions for some of these medications has increased dramatically since the early 1990s. Moreover, a consumer culture amenable to “taking a pill for what ails you” and the perception of prescription drugs as less harmful than illicit drugs are other likely contributors to the problem. It is an urgent one: unintentional overdose deaths involving opioid pain relievers have quadrupled since 1999, and by 2007, outnumbered those involving heroin and cocaine.

NIDA hopes to change this situation by increasing awareness and promoting additional research on prescription drug abuse. Prescription drug abuse is not a new problem, but one that deserves renewed attention. It is imperative that as a Nation we make ourselves aware of the consequences associated with abuse of these medications.

Nora D. Volkow, M.D.

Director, National Institute on Drug Abuse

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