3 Commonly Abused Prescription Drugs

Many addictions begin after getting a legitimate prescription for a mental or physical health issue. However, prescription drugs can be just as dangerous as illicit ones, and some are even more habit-forming than others. BlueCrest Recovery offers prescription drug addiction treatment programs—contact our team at 888.292.9652 to get started.

The Most Commonly Abused Prescription Drugs

Below are the three types of commonly abused prescription medications, each potentially fatal.

1. Opioids

Opioids are drugs that are made from the poppy plant. As their name implies, they affect the opioid receptors in your body, dulling or eliminating pain while flooding your system with dopamine and releasing copious amounts of endorphins, the “feel-good” hormones.

The more you use opioids, the more your body becomes used to releasing those hormones, prompting you to use the drugs more often to continue getting those same effects.

The most common prescription opioids include the following four:

  • Morphine
  • Oxycodone
  • Hydrocodone
  • Fentanyl

Fentanyl is one of the most dangerous because it is 100 times more potent than morphine. Of the most abused prescription drugs, opioids are the ones that pose the most significant overdose risks, as they affect the areas of your brain that control breathing.

2. Stimulants

Another of the most commonly abused prescription drugs is stimulants, which can help treat issues like narcolepsy and ADHD but have a strong potential for abuse.

Stimulants cause a sense of euphoria when not used as prescribed, which can lead to extreme energy and alertness. Like other drugs, you can quickly build a tolerance for these effects, leading you to take more to achieve the “high” you desire.

The most commonly abused prescription stimulants are as follows:

  • Amphetamines – Adderall, Dexedrine, ProCentra
  • Methylphenidate – Concerta, Ritalin, Daytrana
  • Methamphetamine – Desoxyn

Stimulants are very dangerous when taken with alcohol because they can elevate blood pressure and heart rate, potentially triggering a heart attack. They can also increase aggression and risk-seeking behavior.

3. Anti-Anxiety Medications and Sedatives

Anti-anxiety medications and sedatives are the other types of most abused prescription drugs. They are prescribed for sleeping disorders and anxiety issues because they affect the central nervous system, slowing certain cognitive functions. They’re meant to help you feel calm and slightly tired but are also highly addictive.

Typical forms of anti-anxiety medications and sedatives include the following:

  • Benzodiazepines – Xanax, Valium, Ativan
  • Barbiturates – Fioricet, Nembutal, Luminal
  • Z-drugs – Ambien, Lunesta, Sonata

These medications affect your brain similarly to alcohol, increasing the activity of gamma-aminobutyric acid (GABA), an inhibitory neurotransmitter. Not only do the drugs calm you, they also give you a sense of euphoria.

Overdoses are common with these kinds of drugs, especially when combined with alcohol or opioids. As with most other drugs, your body can quickly build up a tolerance, requiring that you take more of the drug to get the desired effects, which can lead to an overdose.

Getting Help for an Addiction to One of Most Abused Prescription Drugs

Getting help means turning to a treatment center offering prescription drug addiction treatment programs. At BlueCrest Recovery, we offer a variety of programs to help you overcome your addiction to the most commonly abused prescription medications. We provide a partial care program, an intensive outpatient program, and a standard outpatient program to help you get back to sobriety.

Find Prescription Drug Addiction Treatment in New Jersey at BlueCrest Recovery

You don’t have to go through the process alone if you are struggling with overcoming addiction. Our addiction treatment center offers conventional and holistic therapies to help you get back on the right path. Don’t hesitate—our caring and compassionate team of professionals aims to guide you through addiction recovery. Contact BlueCrest Recovery today at 888.292.9652 to get the help you need.

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