Substance Abuse

Depression and Painkiller Abuse

A 2008 ABC news article confirms that there is a definite connection between depression and substance abuse. The article also states that some people who are severely depressed will turn to painkillers for relief, and will start abusing the substance because of the euphoric feeling the medicine provides.

Many people will take painkillers to get rid of the “blues” or boost their mood, because they don’t want to admit that they’re suffering from depression. After all, it’s easy to get aspirin or ibuprofen from the local grocery or convenience store—a prescription pain medication may be harder to come by. If a person takes enough of the pain medication, he/she may feel sedated or begin to hallucinate, which is a distraction from feelings of hopelessness, fear or panic.

On the other hand, others will use painkillers when they realize they are depressed and want to medicate themselves on their own terms. When a person buys his/her own medications, the individual can control how large or small the dosage is; with prescription medications, the dosages are measured by a physician. Also, some doctors will make patients sign a waiver, which states that the patient won’t take too much of the drug while it is prescribed.

Symptoms of painkiller abuse include extreme sleepiness, taking several doses a day—even when one don’t have a headache or body pains, and feeling jittery and upset when one doesn’t have the pills. If you notice that a loved one or patient is exhibiting these symptoms, it may be time to purchase a drug test from Complete Drug Testing Solutions.

The tests we offer are easy to administer, whether you’re a health professional, or concerned parent or family member. Our home drug tests are very easy to read, so you can get the results you need immediately—and find the individual who is abusing painkillers much-needed help right away.