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Signs of Addiction to Prescription Medicines

The more you regularly rely on something external to lift you up, relax you, or help you feel better, the closer you move toward addiction. If you decide you are on the path to addiction, you can take action to change your behavior and find caring people to help you.

Check your addiction level

They must be safe, right? After all, a healthcare provider prescribes medicines, and over-the-counter medicines are government approved. But these medicines may be as addictive and destructive as illegal medicines. Read the following statements and check “yes” or “no.” Answering “yes” to 3 or more questions may be a signal that prescription medicines are taking hold of your life.

Yes

No

 

Do you think that because your healthcare provider prescribed the medicine, it couldn’t be harmful or addicting?

Do you think that because you need a prescription for the medicine, it must be safe?

Do you take the medicine for a reason other than its intended purpose?

Has your original dosage increased over time?

Is your prescription “open-ended”?

Have you obtained prescriptions—for the same medicine—from several healthcare providers at the same time?

Have you ever tried to stop taking the medicine and failed?

Do you feel irritable or anxious if you don’t take the medicine?

Do you ever take the medicine along with other drugs, such as alcohol or cocaine?

Do you ever use more than the prescribed amount of your medicine or OTC medicine?

Do you think that because the medicine makes you feel better, whatever has been bothering you has gone away?

Have you used friends’ prescription medicines?

 

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