According to the National Institute for drug abuse, almost 8 percent of young Americans aged 12 to 17 admitted using prescription drugs for non-medical purposes in 2010. Other research has found that as many as 20 percent of adolescents say that they have taken a prescription drug that was not intended for them. These statistics are incredibly troubling to many families in the US.
For families who choose to react proactively to a prescription drug addiction crisis, the warning signs of drug abuse may be confounding and conflicting. How can narrow pupils and enlarged pupils both be signs of prescription drug addiction? Many people tend to be unaware that there are three primary types of commonly abused prescription drugs — opiates, sedatives, and stimulants, and each of these three categories of drugs displays different signs and symptoms of prescription drug abuse. In order to understand the first signs of addiction, families need to familiarize themselves with the symptoms of opiate, sedative, and stimulant abuse.