A pervasive ill plaguing our society is the prescription drug abuse and people of any age group can become its victim. Of all the drugs, antidepressants are more likely to be abused, especially by youngsters. Stimulants and tranquilizers are also commonly abused. It’s better to have knowledge about certain medications that are likely to be abused. Drugs which are predisposed to be abused by somebody fall into three principal categories:
Opioid: These are essentially pain killers which induce a feeling of euphoria in the users.
Tranquilizers: These medicines act as a blanket on the brain, generating a calming effect as a depressant on the central nervous system.
Stimulants: By giving the proverbial kick, stimulants increase brain activity by enhancing alertness and energy level.
Some of the most commonly abused drugs are:
Xanax (alprazolam): This drug falls under the tranquilizer category which depresses the central nervous system of a person. Prescribed to treat panic disorder and serious anxiety, people often abuse Xanax owing to its sedative and relaxing effects. By far this is the most abused drug in the market.
Klonopin & Valium: These drugs also have similar effects like Xanax and are mostly abused for inducing ‘highs’ akin to alcohol. People under the influence of Klonopin & Valium become talkative, feel inebriated and relaxed, just like after a heavy boozing session. These drugs can prove to be lethal in case of an overdose.
Oxycodone: This drug falls under the category of opioid which alters the way the brain reacts to pain. Also known as OxyContin, it induces a euphoric and sedative effect on the user and is often compared with heroin. It is quite expensive and to procure it the addicts often resort to stealing and other petty crimes.
Codeine (Purple Drank): Codeine is primarily used with other medicines to reduce pain and incessant coughing and is used in strong cough syrups. But because of its highly sedative effect, Codeine has made its way to the list of highly abused drugs. When consumed in a high quantity, it can alter the level of consciousness.
Demerol & Darvocet: These drugs were pulled off the shelves in the U.S. in 2010 because of their side effects of contributing to heart ailments. Being painkillers, these medicines bring in immediate results. But over a period of time people become resistant to it and the tolerance level increases significantly. So, as the dosage increases it gives way to a rampant abuse.
Amphetamine: This drug falls under the category of stimulants. Because of its immediate effect on a person, it has earned the sobriquet of ‘speed’. An addict, under its influence, develops a false notion of euphoria, excitement and a sense of wellbeing. It also boosts confidence and motivation level.
Ritalin: Prescribed for the treatment of ADHD, it is used for the central nervous system and often becomes a habit in users leading to any subsequent abuse. Because of the over-the-counter availability and being a frequently prescribed drug, it has become a highly abused prescription drug.
Even if somebody in the family is taking these medicines for any medical condition under the supervision of a doctor, you still need to be vigilant so that it doesn’t get abused. If you find a loved one in the