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Adult Drug Abuse

For many years, adult drug abuse has been an untreated disease. Because of an increasing drug abuse problem in today’s society, there is a growing need for treatment centers for drug abuse. Drug abuse among adults includes heroin, cocaine and marijuana. Although legal for medicinal reasons in some states, pot remains illegal in most and still tops the list of most-used drugs.

Medications and other drugs are often mixed with alcohol. Even if the drug was taken hours before the drinking begins, many drugs have a half-life.

Women are more than 33 times more likely to be prescribed psychotropic medications than men. Benzodiazepines are among the top drugs prescribed, and often women take them for many years. Addiction occurs when physical dependencies and cravings take hold; the addict soon seeks more or mixes their drug of choice with other drugs.

Chronic pain pills are often addictive and surgery recovery medications can cause relapse if pain pills are not correctly tapered or prescribed. Many adults and older adults live in a fog of drug use some of the time, unaware that they may be endangering their life. In cases like these, they have almost certainly lost quality of life.

Opioids, which affect the central nervous system, are among the top addictive pain medications among adults.  

Opioids increase tolerance to pain and ease the perception of pain. They also can create euphoria. Withdrawal symptoms may be severe if medication is not tapered.  Cravings become part of this debilitating addiction. Opioids include:

  • Hydromorphine
  • Oxycodone
  • Benzylmorphine
  • Bupremorpine

Common drugs prescribed for adults that may be addictive and dangerous include:

  • Tranquilizers and sleeping aids
    • Valium
    • Librium
    • Equanil
    • Nebutal
    • Seconal
  • Antidepressants
    • Elavil
    • Triavil
  • Painkillers
    • Darvon
    • Talwin