Is Your Child Using Pills?
Facing the fact that your child may be using pills isn’t easy. A child using any drugs is among the list of things parents hope never to hear. Still, as the prescription pill epidemic grows, a child or loved one using pills is difficult to ignore.
Deaths due to prescription pill overdose now outnumber deaths due to automobile accidents. That’s a pretty frightening fact. It also makes it vitally important to learn if your child or loved one is abusing pills.
Fortunately, that’s where we at Lighthouse can offer a helping hand. We’ve compiled a list of the signs and effects of all types of pill use. Find detailed information and learn if your child, family member, or loved one is abusing pills today!
Signs of Pill Use
Find a list of signs common to various pills below:
• Opioids – these are a family of depressants that mimic the effects of heroin and other naturally occurring opiates. Opioid pills include: Codeine, Vicodin, Percocet, OxyContin, Roxicodone, morphine, methadone, and Suboxone. Signs of opioid use include: nodding off, small or pinned pupils, excessive scratching, constipation, and possession of opioid paraphernalia (pill crushers, tinfoil, empty pill bottles, and syringes).
• Benzo’s – these are a family of tranquilizers and anti-anxiety agents. Popular benzo’s include: Xanax, Valium, Ativan, Klonopin, and Rohypnol. Signs of benzo use include: disorientation, slurred speech, trouble walking, and possession of benzo paraphernalia (pill crushers, straws or rolled up bills, and empty pill bottles).
• Stimulants – stimulant pills are a class of drug that give users energy, alertness, and feelings of confidence. They include: Ritalin, Adderall, Concerta, Vyvanse, Dexedrine, and Desoxyn. Signs of stimulant use include: excessive energy followed by a “crash,” dilated pupils, lack of appetitive, grinding of the teeth or jaw, and stimulant paraphernalia (similar to the paraphernalia listed above).
• OTC pills – these are over the counter pills which can be purchased legally in pharmacies and supermarkets. OTC pills include DXM capsules, pseudoephedrine, and diet pills. Signs of OTC pill use include: disorientation, excessive energy, lack of appetite, and possession of OTC pill paraphernalia (similar to other paraphernalia listed above).
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Effects of Pills
Find a list of effects common to various pills below:
• Opioids – opioids are CNS depressants. As such, they decrease the functions of almost every major organ in the body. They produce euphoria, dull pain, make users drowsy, slow respiration and heart rate, cause constipation, and produce physical withdrawal symptoms. These symptoms include: sweating, shaking, dysphoria, diarrhea, vomiting, Restless Leg Syndrome, bone pain, and muscle pain.
• Benzo’s – benzo’s are CNS depressants and, like opioids, they decrease functioning of most organs. They activate the brain’s GABA receptors and closely mimic the effects of alcohol. They produce euphoria, decrease respiration and heart rate, make users drowsy, confused, and disoriented. Benzo’s are also physically addictive and have a host of nasty withdrawal symptoms. These include: shaking, sweating, depression, anxiety, seizure, and heart failure.
• Stimulants – stimulants, as the name implies, are CNS stimulants. They increase the rate at which the body sends and receives messages. They produce euphoria, decrease appetite, and give users bursts of energy. They also put significant strain on the heart and kidneys. Stimulants aren’t physically addictive, but do produce a mental withdrawal. This includes strong drug cravings, extreme depression, and sleeping for extended periods of time.
• OTC pills – over the counter pills affect the body in different ways. DXM is a CNS depressant, while pseudoephedrine and diet pills are CNS stimulants. DXM produces euphoria, hallucinations, disorientation, and confusion. Pseudoephedrine and diet pills produce euphoria, energy, and alertness. Much like stimulants, they also put strain on the heart and other major organs. OTC pills don’t produce physical withdrawals, but do cause depression and anxiety to occur after stopping their use.
What Do I Do if My Child is Using Pills?
If your child or loved one is using pills, the first thing to do is find out which pills they’re using. Your course of action depends on what specific pills your child has access to. After all, the effects of opioids and stimulants are very different. Therefore, seeking help for each is different.
After learning what pills your child or loved one is abusing, it’s a good idea to gather more information. If they’re using opioids or benzo’s – are they physically addicted? If they’re using stimulants of OTC pills – how long have they been using? Regardless of which pills your child is using – how are they obtaining them? Do they want to stop? If so, what’s the best course of action?
Finally, reach out to professionals. This can be as simple as calling your family doctor. It can also take the form of speaking to a treatment center. To that end, call Lighthouse. We’re more than happy to answer any questions you may have.
Call us today at 1-844-I-CAN-CHANGE or1-(561)-381-0015.