Prescription drugs are the drugs which are prescribed by a physician to treat physical pain, anxiety and sleep disorders etc. Many patients become dependent on them and continue to take them even after the disease is cured and this leads to addiction to those drugs. Prescription drugs are the second most commonly abused drugs after marijuana. According to National Institutes of Health statistics nearly 20 percent of people in the United States have used prescription drugs for non medical reasons.

There are mainly three types of prescription drugs that the people get addicted often, they are pain killers, sedatives and stimulants. One of the factor for getting addicted to these drugs is the availability of drugs, as these are the over the counter drugs. Second factor is, people think that they are safer and less addictive than the street drugs. These drugs can produce drowsiness, constipation and, depending on amount taken, can depress breathing. Addiction to prescription drugs often results in negative effects on personal relationships, employment difficulties and job loss, financial difficulties, legal issues, and psychological problems.

Recent studies and the prescription drug addiction statistics shows that illicit drugs are used more by the young people who are aged between 18 and 25 years. When compared to the trends in the use of illicit drugs, trends in the use of prescription drug addiction are different. Presently, over 30 percent of medications are prescribed for elders having 65 years of age, but most of these age group individuals are found to consume the medication which is not prescribed to them. Youngsters in the age group of 12 to 17 years have also shown a tendency of consuming non prescribed medication. Women in this age group are more likely to consume such drugs than men.

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