Recreational use of prescription drugs is a serious problem with teens and young adults.
National studies show that a teen is more likely to have abused a prescription drug than an illegal street drug.
Many teens think prescription drugs are safe because they were prescribed by a doctor. But taking them for nonmedical use to get high or “self-medicate” can be just as dangerous and addictive as taking illegal street drugs.
There are very serious health risks in taking prescription drugs. This is why they are taken only under the care of a doctor. And even then, they have to be closely monitored to avoid addiction or other problems.
Many pills look the same. It is extremely dangerous to take any pill that you are uncertain about or was not prescribed for you. People can also have different reactions to drugs due to the differences in each person’s body chemistry. A drug that was okay for one person could be very risky, even fatal, for someone else.
Prescription drugs are only safe for the individuals who actually have the prescriptions for them and no one else.
“I realised I was using more Xanax on a regular basis. I took time off work to get off it. Without the knowledge I was ‘addicted,’ I went off of it, cold turkey: for four days and nights I was bedridden. I didn’t sleep or eat. I vomited. I had hallucinations. On about the third day without Xanax I started to become uncoordinated and unbalanced and bumped into things….On about the fourth day I became really worried when I started having twitching sensations.” —Patrick