The California Prescription Drug Addiction Helpline is committed to helping those who struggle with prescription drug addiction find treatment. These resources will provide readers with articles and up to date reports on issues regarding drug addiction and treatment. Check back often for new and exciting material.

How doctors are reducing prescription drug abuse

How doctors are reducing prescription drug abuse

Prescription drugs are designed to treat the most serious health conditions, yet they also kill more Americans by overdose than all other drugs combined. Doctors have become increasingly aware of the danger that prescription drugs can have on their patients. While most patients have a legitimate need for medication, others are more interested in satisfying their addictions or making money on the black market by reselling the drugs they receive. Today’s drug climate requires doctors to balance their roles as medical caregivers as well as drug gatekeepers. Medical professionals do their part to keep drugs out of the hands of addicts in a number of ways (CNN, “How physicians try to prevent ‘doctor shopping’”). Continue reading

The deadliest drugs are prescription painkillers

The deadliest drugs are prescription painkillers

When people talk about dangerous drugs, they’re usually talking about illegal street drugs like heroin, methamphetamine and cocaine. Surprisingly, these narcotics are not responsible for the most deaths per year. The deadliest drugs in America are legal. Prescription painkillers cause more deaths than all other drugs combined. Before taking any prescription opioid, it’s important to understand the risks of medication abuse. Continue reading

Prescription medication abuse in teens is declining

Prescription medication abuse in teens is declining

The 2014 Monitoring the Future (MTF) survey includes detailed data about the rate of teen drug use in the United States. The study, conducted by the National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA), interviewed more than 41,000 students across 377 public and private schools to reach their findings. One major revelation of the report is that prescription medication abuse is trending downward among American teenagers. A close examination of the data offers useful insight into the future of the fight against addiction.

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Get the facts about prescription stimulants

Get the facts about prescription stimulants

Prescription stimulants such as Adderall and Ritalin are drugs that elevate the user’s heart rate, blood pressure and respiration as well as cause a corresponding increase in energy and attention. The drugs are prescribed as medication to treat such conditions as ADHD, narcolepsy and depression. However, stimulants also have the potential for abuse. When people use the drugs without any medical need or go beyond the recommended usage prescribed by a doctor, they run the risk of suffering serious health problems.

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Over-the-counter drugs of abuse: Nasal spray

Over-the-counter drugs of abuse: Nasal spray

Most people don’t think of nasal spray as a dangerous drug, but abuse can lead to surprisingly serious medical consequences. Nasal decongestants are used to temporarily relieve congestion caused by allergies. These sprays, including brand names such as Afrin, can be purchased over the counter at any drug store. Over-use of the sprays, however, can cause major damage to a person’s nasal pathways (Over the Counter Drug Addiction, “OTC Nasal Spray Abuse”). Before using nasal sprays, one should understand the consequences of abuse.

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Over-the-counter drugs of abuse: Sleeping pills

Over-the-counter drugs of abuse: Sleeping pills

Everyone wants a good night’s rest, but sometimes the pursuit of eight blissful hours of sleep can turn into a nightmare. Prescription sleeping aids are well-known for their risk of abuse and addiction, but over-the-counter (OTC) sleeping pills also carry their own dangers. Medications like Excedrin PM, Sominex, Restoril and Tylenol PM can be purchased from drug stores and supermarkets in any quantity and without a doctor’s prescription, but great care should be taken with their use.

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Over-the-counter drugs of abuse: Ephedrine diet pills

Over-the-counter drugs of abuse: Ephedrine diet pills

Prescription drug abuse is the most deadly type of addiction in the United States. Contrary to popular belief, however, even medication sold over the counter (OTC) can result in addiction or cause other serious problems. One commonly abused type of OTC drug is diet pills containing ephedrine. Many people might take ephedrine to lose weight or for recreational purposes without realizing how powerful the drug really is. Using too much of the drug or using it too often can have surprisingly dangerous consequences.   Continue reading

The American College of Physicians’ position on preventing prescription drug abuse

The American College of Physicians’ position on preventing prescription drug abuse

In February 2014, the American College of Physicians (ACP) issued a position paper on prescription drug abuse. The paper is intended as a guide to prescribers and lawmakers on how best to deal with the epidemic of prescription drug abuse in the U.S. At the end of the paper, in the Appendices section, the college makes 10 recommendations for dealing with the epidemic:

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