People have this stereotype in their head of what a real drug addict is, and it can prevent them from seeking help in a drug rehab. They believe that a drug addict is someone who is laying in the gutter with a needle sticking out of their arm. The believe that they could not possibly be anyway near a drug addict, because they just have these pills that their doctor actually prescribed to them, and they happen to really like the pills, and so how could that possibly be drug addiction?
Well guess what? That is drug addiction. And it happens more and more often with people who do not think that they fit the “profile” of what a real drug addict is. And this can be a huge problem if they are not willing to seek help and admit that they have a real problem.
Prescription pills have taken over marijuana as being the most popular gateway drug for teens. Think about that for a moment. This is huge. Kids are popping pills and this leads a small percentage of those kids to seek out heroin later on, because the heroin is easier to find on the streets than Vicodin or Oxy’s.
So what is the answer if you find yourself hooked on pills that your doctor has given you?
Do you just freeze up and say “well, my doctor prescribed them, so obviously he cannot be wrong and I have to keep taking them?” No, this is ridiculous. You need to realize that medicine is not a perfect art and that doctors are nowhere near perfect either.
YOU are always your own best doctor and the bottom line is that no one is responsible for what you put into your body other than you. YOU make the final decision as to whether you shoot heroin or not, right? It is the same with pills that your doctor prescribed you. You decide if they go into your body or not. It is your decision. And you need to take responsibility for that decision. Fully.
Once you realize that it is entirely your decision whether your put prescription drugs into your body or not, you need to decide whether they are really working for you or not. Your doctor might be able to help you with this assessment but likely you will have to figure it out for yourself. If you are self medicating with painkillers and you still complain about pain all the time and your run out of your scripts early then guess what? That is not working so well and you might need to try something else.
Possible solutions for prescription drug addiction include:
1) Talk with your doctor and let him know that you are addicted and that you want non-addictive medications instead. (You might ask about Suboxone as a potentially safer painkiller if that is your issue).
2) Get a new doctor, one that understands addiction (yes, they are out there!).
3) Call up a local drug rehab center and see about getting checked into treatment. You may be still stuck in that idea that you cannot possibly be a drug addict, but if you cannot stop taking the pills on your own or if they are ruining your life, then it is time to start looking for a professional solution. Rehab does not have the terrible stigma attached to it that so many people think is shameful and bad. The people there will help you and respect you if give it a chance.
There are other ways to deal with pain and anxiety other than medicating them heavily with addictive drugs. If you go get detoxed then eventually you can learn these other ways of treating your problems without having to ruin your life in the process. But you have to be willing to take action, acknowledge that you have a problem, and become willing to do something about it.