According to the CDC (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention), 40% of all opioid deaths were from prescription drugs. Fighting a painkiller addiction is a very real and common problem for many people.
One of the hardest things is knowing whether you or a friend is addicted. Many times the abuser isn’t even aware of the problems. It’s time to raise some light on what a typical painkiller addiction looks like.
Here are 5 signs that you might have an addiction.
1. You Don’t Feel Good Without Medicine
It’s important to note that painkillers have a very helpful function in medicine. They can help people get through painful ordeals, such as surgery. However, like most medicine, they are not supposed to be used for long periods of time.
That being said, one of the signs that you might have an addiction is if you don’t feel good without it. We’re not talking about the day after the surgery pain. We’re talking about weeks after.
If not taking pain medicine makes you feel sick, it’s because your body has become used to it. Now it craves the effect that painkillers give it.
The more you indulge in these cravings the harder it will be to break the addiction. If you or someone you know has been taking painkillers for a while and still feels sick, it’s time to talk with your doctor and learn about addiction treatment services.
2. You Think About It All the Time
Another sign of addiction is that you can’t stop thinking about it. It doesn’t matter whether you’re addicted to painkillers, alcohol, or food, addiction takes over lives.
Those with addictions typically watch the clock and count down the minutes until they can another dose of medicine.
This is where addictions begin to really alter your life. You stop living in the moment, and instead, focus all of your attention on drugs. Learn about what makes addictions so enticing.
By understanding the signs and the reasons behind addictions, you’ll be able to fight them better. Talk with a professional and do your research. The cure for an addiction starts with you.
3. You Start Exhibiting One of These Symptoms
When you become addicted to something, your body gets accustomed to having it. After prolonged doses, the effects will begin to wear off. However, you’ll still have the desire to feel what you once felt.
That means you’ll slowly begin increasing the doses until your body can’t function without the drug. When you hit this point, these are some of the symptoms you might start to notice.
First, you’ll begin to feel pain in your muscles and bones. You’ll have trouble sleeping, and notice feelings of restlessness. Some of the more severe symptoms are diarrhea and vomiting.
Another sign of opioid dependence is cold flashes with goosebumps. This is often called cold turkey.
However, most of these symptoms are not the problem. The problem with a painkiller addiction is something called respiratory dependence.
Respiratory dependence is a fatal symptom that worsens with the higher dosage you take. The painkillers slow down your breathing to the point where you stop breathing altogether.
This is how many people die from opioids. If you’ve been taking painkillers for a long time and you notice that you are frequently out of breath, look for professional help.
4. You Don’t Feel Normal
Another side effect of painkiller abuse is not feeling like yourself. You may become defensive and standoffish when people mention the drugs. You won’t feel in control and you won’t feel normal.
Not only do painkillers affect your mood, but they also affect your behavior and your appearance. The longer you take them the less you’ll recognize yourself. Lack of sleep will lead to dark, sunken eyes, unhealthy skin and damaged hair.
You will find that you are more easily irritated as well. The activities you once enjoyed now hold little interest.
You may try to gain more control over other things in your life to combat the lack of control when it comes to your painkillers.
When people mention their concerns to you, do you get annoyed or secretive? Hiding things from loved ones is one of the main signs of addiction.
5. You Don’t Follow Your Doctor’s Recommendations
Lastly, if you notice that you’re not following your doctor’s recommendations, you might be sliding down a slippery slope. Many people who are addicted space their doses out so that they can get a bigger high during the day.
Always follow your doctor’s recommendations about when and how often to take the medicine.
If you’ve started visiting other doctors to get prescriptions, that’s a sign that you have an addiction as well. Filling multiple prescriptions for the same issue is not healthy and needs to be addressed.
If you are struggling with an addiction it’s not likely that it will go away, which is why you need to seek help. In fact, 80 percent of all those that struggled with substance abuse also had problems with alcohol addictions as well.
Recognizing signs such as this is the first step to getting help. When you first get a prescription, be sure to talk with your doctor about how long you are supposed to take the medicine.
Don’t convince yourself to change the recommendations. If you disagree with something that was said, talk about it. Don’t abuse your doctor’s orders.
Fight the Painkiller Addiction Today
Painkiller addiction is a very real issue in our society. However, there are a lot of ways to get help. It’s hard to notice the symptoms in your own life.
You’ve likely thought that you’re different, that this is just a rough patch of your life and that you can stop any time. Well, now is the time to stop.
If any of these signs apply to you, you need to seek professional help. Not every sign and symptom will be the same for you. However, these are some common ones.
If you’re ready to make a change and get your future back, call us today! Our medical professionals will help you stop the addiction fast.