Opioids are more commonly known as "pain killers" because they are most often prescribed to people who may experience acute pain after an accident, surgery or dental extraction. Opioids are also prescribed to people who are experiencing chronic pain such as back injuries. If taken exactly as prescribed, opioids can help a person cope with pain during the recovery period. However, painkillers are very addictive when abused and are one of the most commonly abused drug by both teens and adults.
Sometimes doctors continue to prescribe opioids to patients long after they are needed, and often times these drugs are obtained on the black market once a person no longer has a prescription and has developed a dependency.
The addictive nature of opioids is what makes them so dangerous and extremely lucrative for the black market.
Before ever taking any of these drugs not prescribed to you by a doctor, keep in mind that heroin is also in the same class of drugs, and prescription pill abuse often leads young people down this road...
I've never heard of opioids, what are they?
You most likely have heard of OxyContin, Vicodin, Lortabs, Dilaudid, Codeine and Methadone. These are all forms of opioids that are prescribed for various reasons by doctors.
If doctors prescribe them, what could be wrong with them?
First and foremost, opioids can be extremely addictive because the body adapts to the presence of the drug. When taken under the supervision of a doctor to manage pain, the addictive nature of the drug can be controlled by dosage and eventual non-use of the drug altogether with no negative side effects or addiction. However, overuse and abuse of opioids will lead to an addiction just as bad or worse than any illegal street drug, often ruining the lives of both teenagers and adults alike.
In the past, stimulants were often prescribed by doctors for many conditions including respiratory problems such as asthma, obesity and various neurological disorders. Recently, the medical community has realized the capacity for addiction to these drugs and typically only subscribe them for a handful of conditions such as narcolepsy and depression.
A disturbing and ongoing trend in the psychiatric community has been prescribing stimulants such as Ritalin to children diagnosed with ADHD (Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder). This practice of medicating children instead of working with the problem has grossly contributed to the prescription drug abuse epidemic we see today.
In addition to the erroneous prescriptions given to young children, many teens and adults are prescribed these drugs which can not only lead to addiction, but have many negative effects when taken, and even worse withdrawal symptoms.
Furthermore, the over-prescription of these drugs has lead to an outbreak of stimulant abuse. Many youth are now crushing these prescription tablets and snorting or even injecting them directly into blood vessels. Even when taken orally, the mixture of prescription stimulants combined with over the counter drugs such as alcohol or other prescription antidepressants can prove fatal, even to a young, healthy body.
So what exactly is a prescription stimulant?
You might know them as Ritalin, Dexedrine and Adderall.
Common Street names include uppers, bennies, skippy, speed or "the smart drug" (because of students using them to cram for a big test.)
The Real Zombie Apocalypse…
Welcome to the world of prescription depressants.
Prescription depressants (or CNS Depressants) are commonly called "sleeping pills", however they are not always prescribed for sleeping and have good uses when prescribed or administered properly. The "CNS" stands for "Central Nervous System", which means they basically slow down the normal activity of the brain.
Often times, different types of depressants are used beneficially to treat conditions such as seizure disorders or used during surgical procedures. Sleeping disorders are also a very real problem that can be treated with "sleep medications" that fall under the category of CNS Depressants.
There are several issues with prescription depressants when they are taken improperly or abused. CNS Depressants can be highly addictive and react in different ways with commonly used over-the-counter drugs like allergy medication and cold medicine. Alcohol and prescription pain medications can also react negatively with this family of drugs, often leading to heart and respiratory problems, sometimes ending in death.
I have never heard of a CNS depressant, what are they?
They come in several forms to treat different illnesses, but are typically abused in the same way. You may know them as Valium, Xanax, Ambien, Lunesta or Mebaral. Street names can include Barbs, downers, trances, zombie pills or simply "sleeping pills". These drugs vary greatly in their effects and reactions with physiology and other drugs, so don't let the general names fool you into thinking they are all the same.
If they are so dangerous, why are they prescribed by doctors?
Taken as directed, this type of prescription medication can be helpful to people with certain conditions. CNS Depressants are extremely addictive by nature and often the drug is overused/abused by a patient or falls into the hands of somebody who was not prescribed the drug.