When people hear the term "drug abuse," their first thought is often extreme addictions to drugs like methamphetamine or heroine among others. However, prescription drug abuse is also a common problem in Florida and one that is not as noticeably prevalent. When people understand the behaviors that constitute prescription drug abuse, they can take active measures to protect themselves from potentially misusing a drug and putting themselves at risk of becoming addicted or injured.
According to the Foundations Recovery Network, using a prescription drug incorrectly is when people use it any other way than is specifically laid out by their health care provider or pharmacist. This includes grinding a drug or inhaling it when it has been designated as one that should be swallowed. Other abusive behaviors include taking drugs with alcohol or other drugs or taking a dosage higher than the one prescribed. When people take their prescription more frequently than prescribed, this is another form of misuse.
For people wishing to be proactive in protecting themselves against potentially addictive behaviors, the National Institute on Drug Abuse suggests they be aware of the ways in which a drug can negatively interact with other drugs. They should also receive a clear explanation from their pharmacist about how to use the drug including dosage amounts and frequency. Should they have any questions, they should immediately clarify with their health care provider. Other suggestions include understanding proper storing requirements, disposing of unused drugs in the correct manner and not giving their unused prescriptions to other people. Lastly, they should never alter their regimen without first meeting with their health care provider to make sure that it will not affect their safety or wellbeing.