Prescription and Illicit Drug Abuse
Frequently Asked Questions
8. What are warning signs of medication abuse?
A person’s behavior, especially changes in behavior, can signal a possible substance abuse problem. For example, you may notice that an older adult seems worried about whether a medicine is “really working,” or complains that a doctor refuses to write a prescription. He or she may have new problems doing everyday tasks or withdraw from family, friends, and normal activities.
Other possible warning signs include
- rapid increases in the amount of medication needed
- frequent requests for refills of certain medicines
- a person not seeming like themselves (showing a general lack of interest or being overly energetic)
- "doctor shopping" -- moving from provider to provider in an effort to get several prescriptions for the same medication
- use of more than one pharmacy
- false or forged prescriptions.