Prescription Drugs

Get Email Updates

Related Topics

Prescription Drugs Guide

Susan Cody HERWriter Guide

Have a question? We're here to help. Ask the Community.


Health Newsletter

Receive the latest and greatest in women's health and wellness from EmpowHER - for free!

Prescription Drugs Definition


Prescription drug addiction is the compulsive seeking and overuse—despite harmful consequences—of prescription drugs. Addiction can sometimes be difficult to diagnose since patients with chronic pain often do need frequent pain medication, and physical dependence can occur with many drugs taken as prescribed. A drug-addicted body, however, requires the drug regularly to avoid withdrawal symptoms (such as nausea, vomiting, and sweating) and to feel good.

Misuse of prescription drugs involves using a medication for a purpose other than which it was prescribed (eg, taking pain medication to aid sleep or ease anxiety , rather than to treat pain). Physical dependence happens with many drugs, even non-addictive drugs, such as corticosteroids and beta-blockers, and is noticeable after a medication is stopped suddenly. Addiction is a much more severe physical dependence and brain disease, marked by an out-of-control need and craving, affecting relationships, and impacting social obligations (eg, work and school).

The most commonly abused prescription drugs are:

View Prescription Drugs Definition & Overview


3195 Health


1960 Lives


1836 Lives
12 lives impacted in the last 24 hrs Learn More

Connect with Women Like You 84 Women Care About this Condition

You're not alone. Connect with other women who are going through what you're going through, who understand and are here for you!

+ Join this Community

Take Our Featured Health Poll

Have you joined the IUD trend? What kind of birth control do you use? :
View Results