Although prescription drugs needs a prescription from a doctor, they can easily end up being abused by the patients or their friends.
Prescription drug abuse can ruin your life. Months or years after you begin using, you can suddenly lose your job – ruin your marriage, or even lose your kids – and that is because many employers decide to give surprise hair drug tests (which are almost impossible to beat).
Prescription drug abuse is the misuse of a drug/medication, which includes overdosing, taking medication together with alcohol or other drugs and even taking the medication using the wrong administration method.
According to the National Institute Of Drug Abuse, people mostly abuse prescription drugs such as;
- Prescription opioids (e.g. codeine, morphine, oxycodone, etc.)
- Prescription sedatives (e.g. barbiturates, benzodiazepines, sleeping medication, etc.)
- Prescription stimulants (e.g. amphetamine, methylphenidate)
Studies have established that unintentional prescription medication overdose kills at least one person in the United States every day. There is even a report stating that prescription drug abuse causes more deaths than heroin and cocaine combined.
In addition to that, this form of drug abuse doesn’t come cheap. In fact, the United States loses at least $53.4 billion every year due to medical costs, criminal justice costs and lost productivity. With this in mind, preventing prescription drug abuse is of utmost importance.
Prevention Of Prescription Drug Abuse
Here are ten tips to help avoid this type of drug misuse:
1. The very first step of preventing prescription drug abuse is creating knowledge and awareness about what it is and the risks it poses. Information is power and in this case, it can mean the difference between normal use and abuse of the medication.
2. Secondly, it is absolutely important to ensure that you get the right medication for your condition. The best way to do this is to make sure that the doctor understands your condition. If you are afraid that the ingredients used in the medication could be addictive, inquire for alternative medication that contains less addictive ingredients.
3. Prescription drugs normally have clear instructions defining the dose to take, the times to take it and even the ways to administer it. Following these instructions is an important precursor for the prevention of drug abuse.
For example, a drug that is supposed to be taken orally should not be taken in the form of an injection. Similarly, it would be inappropriate to take more than the prescribed dose of medication with the intention of increasing the drug’s effect.
4. Prescription drug abuse can also arise from sharing prescriptions Always remember that prescriptions are according to an individual’s basis. It is therefore not advisable for people to use other peoples’ prescriptions. What may be right for a certain individual may not necessarily be right for you?
5. If you are a parent, and especially the parent to a teen, then keeping the prescription drugs out of sight is an important step in preventing drug abuse. In fact, keeping the medicine cabinet under lock and key may be a good idea.
6. These days, there are lots of online websites claiming to sell prescription drugs as well as non-prescription drugs. Nevertheless, only a few of them can be trusted while the rest may even prescribe drugs that contain illegal ingredients, etc.
7. It is also crucial to dispose of unwanted and expired medication in the right manner. This is especially critical if you have teens in the house. Some medications come along with instructions on how to dispose of. For medication, that doesn’t feature disposal instructions. In this case, mixing the medication with substances such as kitty litter and sawdust. Proper disposal of prescription drugs is also a good way of conserving the environment.
8. Prescription drug abuse can also be prevented by ensuring that patients understand what their medication does and doesn’t. This includes knowing the side effects you could experience from the medication. Also, patients should research on avoidable drugs and substances in the course of taking medication.
9. Lastly, prediction drug abuse can be prevented by always keeping track of your treatment. This is a particularly good tactic for use at home. Keeping track of these prescription drugs includes regularly counting the remaining medication and making sure it is the right number.
10. Some experts also suggest that keeping extra prescription drugs for future use is detrimental to the objective of preventing prescription drug abuse. This means that you can avoid prescription drug abuse by not keeping drugs for future use.