How to Identify the Signs of Pain Pill Abuse

Learn to identify the signs of pain pill abuse

According to data released by the National Institute on Drug Abuse, prescription pain killer abuse has reached epidemic proportions. Between 26 million and 36 million people around the world are currently experiencing pain pill addiction at some level. Is there a possibility that you have a loved one who is among the millions of people who have found themselves entangled and consumed by a pain killer addiction? The signs can sometimes be subtle and unassuming, but it is immensely important to be able to detect the signs of pain pill abuse in order to get your loved one the help they need as quickly as possible. The earlier in the process that intervention begins the higher the rate of success.

Following are some of the common signs and symptoms that you should be looking for if you suspect that someone you love might be struggling with pain pill addiction.

Unexplained or Excessive Drowsiness as signs of pain pill abuse

It is not uncommon for a person who is addicted to painkillers to experience severe bouts of drowsiness, which is a common side effect of opioid use. If your loved one has a proclivity to nod off in the middle of a conversation or while watching a movie, it could be in response to the presence of opioid use. Opioids are depressants that will slow down the heart rate and breathing, leading to drowsiness as the brain is not getting enough oxygen to maintain alertness. This is also how an overdose takes place.

A Substantial Shift in Sleeping Habits

A person’s sleeping habits are very telling, even when they are not struggling with an addiction. One of the most powerful habits we develop is when and how we sleep. A sudden change in sleeping habits, that cannot be easily rationalized, should be a cause for concern. The change in sleeping habits can go one of two directions. They can begin to sleep much longer than they usually sleep or they can find it hard to remain sleep, waking up constantly throughout the night. This is a common sign of pain pill abuse.

Weight Loss is Common Among Pain Pill Abusers

Prolonged opioid use can result in metabolic changes that cause the individual to experience inexplicable weight loss. If the individual finds it difficult to sustain their normal weight without there being a reasonable explanation, the weight loss could be a result of opioid abuse.

A Decreased Libido

Due to the fact that the use of opioids results in the lowering of the body’s natural testosterone and estrogen levels, both of which are needed to support a healthy libido, sexual functionality can be significantly impacted. Often the impact can be subtle and it can be easy for the individual to blame the lack of performance on any of a number of other things, and because a decrease in libido can be caused by so many other things, it tends to be an elusive symptom to nail down, but it should definitely not be ignored, especially when it is present with a number of other symptoms of painkiller abuse.

The Reemergence of Old Habits

As people progress, they tend to eliminate habits that are non-conducive to reaching their desired goals. If former habits like drinking and smoking, or hanging out in undesirable places emerge, it is a strong indication that the individual is struggling with something that is diminishing their capacity to make sound decisions and resist undesirable behavior, which is a symptom that is strongly associated with painkiller addiction.

Theft and Overspending

The manner in which the individual handles money and valuables will provide substantial insight into their current state. If they have resorted to stealing, it is likely for the purpose of supporting their habit, or a result of the corruption of their moral compass. Also, if there is excessive spending, that should be examined more closely.

Each person is different, so the presence of any one of these symptoms in and of themselves does not stand as absolute evidence of a pain pill addiction, but when these symptoms appear in clusters, the need for alarm is definitely present. Know the signs of pain pill addiction and addictive painkillers.