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OTC Drugs - Over the Counter Drug Addiction Treatment in San Diego

Over-the-Counter (OTC) medicines are those drugs you can purchase at drugstores or supermarkets without a prescription.

If taken as directed, over-the-counter medications are usually safe. However, they have the same potential for abuse as illicit and legal drugs. Therefore, OTC medications still carry a danger of addiction, although they are less potent than other pharmaceuticals.

Abusing OTC medications can result in memory loss, kidney failure, cardiac issues, and even death.

Abuse of OTC Drugs and Examples of Medicines

OTC drugs that are frequently abused include the following:

  • Cough suppressants
  • Motion sickness medicines
  • Cold medicines
  • Diet Pills

OTC medications can be used to treat moderate discomforts and motion sickness, among other medical conditions. Some people abuse over-the-counter medications to treat mental diseases, including depression and anxiety.

Abusing these drugs can also cause users to feel euphoric or even experience hallucinations. Abuse is defined as any use that deviates from the advised usage.

In search of a stronger high, someone taking OTC medicines may also try or progress to more harmful or illegal substances

The drugs may, in extremely rare circumstances, be prescribed to treat epilepsy, migraine headaches, and a few other diseases. Doctors now typically recommend different medicines. Some people develop an addiction quite rapidly. Therefore, it can be difficult to quit using these medicines making withdrawal a challenge.

Cough Medicines (Dextromethorphan, or DXM)

When misused, cough medications can result in hallucinations and a strong high. Young people frequently use cough medicines since they are frequently available in their medicine cabinets at home.

The Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) provides a list of various dose-dependent plateaus that DXM abusers may encounter. For example, the following events may occur:

  • DXM should not be taken in excess of 120 mg per day because doing so might lead to drunkenness and potentially harmful adverse effects.
  • Mild stimulation and euphoria are brought on by a dose of 100–200 mg.
  • For higher euphoria and hallucinations, users take from 200–400 mg doses at a time.
  • Loss of motor coordination and visual abnormalities occur at doses of 300–600 mg.
  • Doses of 500–1500 mg can produce out-of-body experiences.

Other Difficulties of Abusing DXM

In addition, DXM at high doses can lead to:

  • Difficulties with breathing
  • Muscle spasms
  • Sleepiness
  • Heart palpitations
  • Increased body temperature
  • Vomiting
  • A quickened heartbeat
  • Problems with seeing
  • Brain injury

Drug & Alcohol Detox in San Diego

Cold Relief Medicines (Pseudoephedrine)

The stimulant pseudoephedrine serves as the main component in several cold medications. It may also help with congestion. It is used to treat nasal and sinus stuffiness brought on by colds or allergies.

  • Pseudoephedrine abuse may occasionally be used to induce hallucinations or a powerful "body high."
  • Additionally, pseudoephedrine is used to make illegal substances like methamphetamine.
  • Pseudoephedrine abuse can result in irregular heartbeat, breathlessness, high blood pressure, vertigo, and seizures.

Pills for Motion Sickness (Dimenhydrinate)

For the treatment of vertigo and motion sickness, dimenhydrinate is often used. Abuse of the medicine can result in seizures, coma, death, ringing in the ears, nausea, an irregular heartbeat, hallucinations, and other side effects appear in excessive doses. Because of the drug's hallucinogenic effects, it is frequently misused. When administered in excessive amounts, the medication is regarded as a deliriant (between 200-1200 mg., depending on body weight).

Diet Pills

Over-the-counter diet supplements and medications are often abused, as they suppress the appetite, helping a person feel less hungry so they can lose weight.

They may also heighten your sense of euphoria or increase your stamina. Given this effect, it’s easy for some people to become addicted.

Moreover, an addiction to diet aids may result from an underlying cause - anorexia or bulimia, or a similar eating disorder. The pills can weaken a person's emotional and physical health, thereby making medical and psychological intervention a necessity.


OTC Drug Dependence

Over time, recreational OTC medication use can potentially alter the chemistry of the brain. In addition, the user develops a tolerance to the drugs, requiring ever higher doses to achieve the same results.

OTC Withdrawal Symptoms

When they quit using OTC medicines, people who are addicted may experience the following symptoms of withdrawal:

  • Confusion
  • Irritability
  • Agitation
  • Anxiety
  • Mood shits

It often is challenging to recognize an OTC drug addiction. Tylenol or other over-the-counter medications for coughing don't have the same negative connotations of danger as illegal substances like heroin.

Warning Signs of OTC Abuse

Because they are not always perceived as addictive, many loved ones of OTC drug addicts are unaware of the warning signs. Some of these warning signs include the following:

  • Social withdrawal
  • Short-term memory loss
  • Changes in moods or personality
  • Slurred speech
  • Changes in appetite
  • Weight gain or weight loss

If you want to beat an OTC addiction, it’s best to contact a facility like Present Moments in San Diego, as our team is equipped to lead you through detox and support your needs with respect to nutrition and counseling.

The Withdrawal Timeline

The timeline for a withdrawal will depend on the dose of medicine you regularly take, the type of drug, the frequency of use, your method of ingestion, and your physical and mental health and age. You’ll also want to detox in a supportive and safe environment, such as that featured by Present Moments in San Diego.

For anyone with a mild addiction, withdrawal will usually take a few days while a more serious addiction may take as long as three weeks. The first few days after stopping a drug are the most intense. Fortunately, Present Moments can make this transition both secure and comfortable.

Enrolling in an OTC Rehab Program at Present Moments in San Diego

To overcome an addiction to OTC medications, you need to enroll in a treatment program that specializes in this therapy. Present Moments offers a program where you can cleanse your mind and body, get involved in counseling, and improve your overall health through better nutrition.

If you are currently addicted to an OTC medication, you need to take the steps needed to overcome your addiction. By using the resources of a drug rehab facility, you can get a new lease on life and get the emotional and physical support you need.

The Time to Contact Present Moments in San Diego is Today

Do you or a loved one need to join drug rehab for an OTC addiction? If so, you can find the care you need through Present Moments in San Diego. Get the help you require now. The sooner you get medical intervention, the more positive you will feel about overcoming your addiction issues. Call Present Moments in San Diego to schedule a consultation right away.

Get in Touch with Our Caring Team

We are waiting for your call. Don’t hesitate, pick up the phone and dial 619-363-4767 today.

Your first call will be greeted by one of our intake counselors who will be able to provide information on what program would be appropriate for your situation, as well as information about the process of getting treatment at our facility, if appropriate.

If Present Moments is the right fit for your current situation you will be speaking to Admissions Director Mark Gladden, who will be your guide throughout the process of arranging travel and undergoing an initial detox (if necessary). Mark has been the guide for dozens of men and women who have gotten their lives back by entering treatment at Present Moments. He has earned his reputation as being truly dedicated to the recovery of others. Mark will be the one to ‘show you the ropes’ when it comes to admitting to our facility for treatment

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