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Can I Take Uppers if I’m Addicted to Prescription Drugs?

Can I Take Uppers if I’m Addicted to Prescription Drugs?Combining drugs is risky, and even with medical supervision can lead to unexpected reactions. Combining drugs without a doctor’s support is even more dangerous, and, if you are addicted to prescription drugs, you are already in a state of compromised health.

Combining Uppers and Downers Can Be Deadly

Prescription drug addictions may involve drugs such as the following:

  • Lortab
  • Percocet
  • OxyContin
  • Ambien
  • Klonopin
  • Xanax

Addiction to these drugs usually means taking them in higher than recommended doses and for extended periods of time. This practice puts you at high risk for serious side effects. Because chronic use leads to tolerance, addicts tend to increase doses over time and can end up taking herculean amounts of opiates, benzodiazepines or other downers. This can lead to overdose and death, as these drugs slow bodily functions such as heart rate and breathing rate.

Adding amphetamines or other uppers to a system already compromised by painkillers or other prescription drugs stresses the body further with contradictory and conflicting effects. The heart especially is strained, as opiates or benzodiazepines slow it down, while amphetamines cause it to race. Uppers and downers taken together, even when they are both prescription drugs, have essentially the same effect on the central nervous system as the combination of cocaine and heroin taken intravenously and known as a “speedball.” A “speedball” is notorious for its potential for fatal overdose and is the drug cocktail that killed comedian John Belushi.

Dangers of Combining Prescription Drugs and Alcohol

Alcohol will amplify the effects of almost any drug. Alcohol taken with opiates greatly increases the chance of fatal overdose. Alcohol is also cross-tolerant with benzodiazepines meaning that developing a tolerance for one will result in a tolerance for the other. The result can be a steady increase in consumption resulting in the most severe side effects of the drug and the possibility of fatal overdose. Benzodiazepines have largely taken the place of barbiturates in modern medicine and have a similar effect on the central nervous system. The combination of barbiturates and alcohol is also notoriously deadly and is suspected to be responsible for the death of Marilyn Monroe. Benzodiazepines are less toxic on their own than barbiturates. Death from benzodiazepine overdose alone is rare, but combining benzos with alcohol or opiates increases toxicity substantially and may result in coma or death.

Need Help for Prescription Drug Addiction?

Professional treatment for prescription drug abuse or addiction is the safest route to recovery, and offers the best chance of lasting success. If you would like help finding treatment or if you just want to talk to someone about drugs, addiction or treatment options, call us. Our number is toll free, and we are available 24 hours a day.

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