With all of the talk in the news media about the opioid epidemic in this country, we have finally as a society begun to understand a problem that has been going on for years now. For far too long, people suffered from the misconception that because something was prescribed by their doctor, that it was safe to take, and could not result in addiction or other negative consequences. However, as we grapple with what Oxycontin did to many people in this country, we can now see that just because something is prescribed by a doctor, doesn’t mean that there are no risks involved.
This is not to say that the doctors are at fault for this, although some may be, but in the particular case of Oxycontin, they were mislead by the drug companies to believe that the drug was not as addictive as it actually is. They were told that it was a safer alternative to traditional opiates and because of this, millions and millions of prescriptions were written that resulted in a nationwide addiction problem and the death of thousands and thousands of people.
What this shows is that as consumers, we have to be educated about what we are putting into our bodies. It is one thing to trust what your physician is telling you, but doing so on blind faith and without knowledge of your own personal history with substance abuse is dangerous and ill advised. It is tantamount to playing Russian roulette and so in order to better educate the general public about the addictive nature of many commonly prescribed drugs, below is a list of the 10 most commonly used addictive prescribed drugs.
Top 10 Addictive Prescribed Drugs
I want to state from the outset that this list is in no particular order and its descending nature does not represent how addictive the drugs are, or how often they are prescribed. The drugs on this list are simply 10 of the most commonly used addictive prescribed drugs that consumers should be aware of, so that if they are prescribed these drugs in the future, they know what they are getting themselves into.
1. Oxycodone/ Oxycontin
This drug is not prescribed nearly as often as it was 5 to 10 years ago, but it is still often times the chosen method for treating pain in hospitals throughout the US. It is sometimes called Oxycontin, when it does not contain any acetaminophen, or it can be called Oxycodone or Percocet.
Xanax is probably one of the most addictive prescribed drugs, and it is usually prescribed for people who have issues with anxiety. The drug is incredibly powerful and the withdrawal symptoms from Xanax can result in seizures and death.
Adderall is prescribed for people who suffer from ADHD, but in recent years, it has become a study drug for many American college students. While the drug does allow the individual to focus on what they are doing, it is incredibly addictive because it is essentially speed.
Codeine is used in many prescription cough medicines and it has grown in popularity due to the fact that many rappers have begun talking about the drug in the past few years. Codeine is addictive and the side effects from the drugs can be dangerous if it is not taken as directed.
Klonopin is used as a way to help people who suffer from anxiety or panic disorders and it is faster acting than its other benzodiazepine counterpart Xanax. Klonopin is probably prescribed more readily than Xanax, but this does not mean that it is any less addictive. Similarly, withdrawal symptoms from Klonopin can prove fatal.
Demerol is an opioid pain medication and while it is not as widely known as Oxycodone, it is similarly addictive and similarly dangerous. People who are prescribed Demerol can become addicted to it and they also run the risk of suffering from an overdose if they take too much.
Ritalin has, in a sense, been replaced by Adderall for the treatment of ADHD, but it is still used from time to time. It is similar to Adderall in that it is essentially speed and a person who uses Ritalin for an extended period of time can become addicted.
While in the hospital recovering from a surgery, people are often times prescribed morphine. Not often is this drug prescribed outside of a hospital setting and this is because of how powerful and addictive the drug is.
Similar to morphine, Fentanyl is very rarely prescribed outside of a hospital setting and for good reason because of how powerful it is. This past year, the drug became a household name due to the fact that drug dealers throughout the country started cutting heroin with the drug which led to a string of overdoses unlike anything we’ve seen before.
Vicodin is an opioid pain killer similar to oxycodone, although it contains hydrocodone and acetaminophen. Just because the drug is seen as being not as strong as oxycodone does not mean that it is not addictive and a person who takes Vicodin for an extended period of time can and will become addicted to the substance.
Hopefully this list helped you to better understand what these drugs are used for and how addictive they can possibly be. While it always best to follow medical advice in matters regarding prescription drugs use, it is important for you to be a well-informed and educated patient so that you can advocate for yourself and not unwittingly become hooked on these addictive prescription drugs.