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5 Warning Signs That Mean You Might be Addicted to Painkillers

In times of need, painkillers serve an important purpose. For instance, after a severe injury or surgery, most people need to take them until the pain subsides. But even prescription painkillers are addictive, and many people find themselves unable to do without them after the real need has passed. If you or a loved one has been prescribed painkillers, and are worried about a possible addiction, here are five warning signs to be on the lookout for.

You Can't Stop Thinking About Your Next Dose

When you're truly in pain, it's normal to think about the next dose as the current one begins to wear off, but if you have been taking the medication long enough that the pain has subsided, and you're still thinking about the next dose, you might have a problem. In addition to anticipating the next dose, people who are addicted to prescription painkillers often worry about when their supply will run out.

You Seek Prescriptions from Different Doctors

Doctors are on the lookout for patients who ask for unneeded painkiller prescriptions, and typically refuse to give them once they suspect there is a problem. But people who are addicted to the substance will simply look for another doctor who will write them a prescription. If you find yourself 'doctor shopping' when one doctor won't give you another prescription, you may have a problem.

You Alter Your Prescription

Do you take more pills than your doctor prescribed? Or perhaps you take the pills more frequently than the instructions tell you to. If you alter your doctor's instructions on how to take the painkillers, then you might need to see someone about an addiction to painkillers.

You Find Pills from Places Other Than the Doctor's Office

When people who have a painkiller addiction are told no by their doctor, they begin to look for other ways to get the pills. Some will buy them illegally, order them from the internet, take them from sick relatives, write their own prescriptions from a stolen prescription pad, or hurt themselves so the hospital will prescribe them more. If you are engaging in any of these activities, it's recommended that you immediately seek help from a trusted rehab center.

You've Been Taking Painkillers for a Long Time

If your injury has been healed a long time, and you are now taking the painkillers because of how they make you feel, instead of needing relief from pain, it's time to admit that you have a problem and get help for it. It's a classic sign of an addiction when you take the drugs, even though you no longer need them for pain control.

You Don't Like to be Confronted About It

If you find yourself getting defensive when asked about how often you take pain pills, it might be a sign that you're an addict. Addicts don't like to be confronted about their addictions, and typically get defensive when asked, or pick a fight to take the focus off of their behaviors.

Do You Need Help?

If you recognize any of the above listed behaviors, then you might need to ask for help. Look for a qualified and respected treatment center that can help you overcome your addiction to painkillers and call them right away—before the addiction completely takes over your life.

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