Most Commonly Abused Drugs

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Addictive substances, including alcohol, cigarettes and drugs.

When it comes to abusing drugs, many assume it only involves the use of illegal substances. However, some of the most commonly abused drugs are ones we receive over the counter and through prescriptions. These include:

  1. These drugs – such as Phenobarbital, pentobarbital, and secobarbital – help with anxiety, trouble sleeping, and certain types of seizures. If you abuse them, addictions can easy form. Taking a high dosage can cause trouble breathing, especially if combined with alcohol.
  2. These drugs (two of the most well known are Xanax and Valium) are sedatives that help with anxiety, panic attacks, and trouble sleeping. They are safer than barbiturates, but can easily lead to addiction and physical dependence.
  3. Sleep medications. Drugs like Ambien, Lunesta, and Sonata can help you sleep, but if you use them much longer than you should, you may end up needing them sleep. These drugs aren’t as addictive as other sleeping meds, but there is a great concern in regards to the abuse of them.
  4. Codeine and morphine. These are painkillers, and painkillers are some of the most commonly abused prescription medications, particularly opioids. While the drugs dull the sensation of pain, they also cause a euphoric high, as well as dangerous side effects, when taken in high dosage. Morphine is usually prescribed for severe pain and codeine is prescribed for mild pain and coughing.
  5. Oxycontin and Percocet. Percodan and Roxicodone are also included in this group of opioid painkillers. Those who abuse oxycodone sometimes crush it, snort it, or inject it – all of which increase the risk of overdose.
  6. Vicodin, Lortab, and Lorcet. These drugs contain hydrocodone (an opioid) and acetaminophen. Opioids cause drowsiness and constipation, and when taken in high doses can cause breathing problems.
  7. These stimulants help with ADHD (including Adderall, Adderall XR, Dextroamphetamine, and Mydriasis). Those who abuse amphetamines are seeking a high that boosts their energy and alertness, or to lose weight. High doses lead to a dangerous increase in body temperature, an irregular heartbeat, and cardiac arrest.

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