Addiction is difficult to understand and not exactly easy to cope with but it doesn’t always involve drugs and alcohol. Studies show that sugar is nearly as addictive as cocaine and consuming large amounts of sugar causes a euphoric effect, which when recorded on a scanner, shows that sugar stimulates the brain in the same way as cocaine does.

Junk food cravings that visit you frequently, compulsive television binge-watching sessions, being consumed by your professional life,  even being obsessed with fitness or indulging in a series of sexual escapades; all of these are addictive behavior patterns that can negatively affect one’s well-being and emotional balance.

But addiction lurks even in the least likely place: your medicine cabinet. Prescription painkillers that are recommended by a doctor to alleviate a patient’s suffering or some kind of physical discomfort can turn into lethal killers, if not used carefully.

Here are some tips to prevent and cope with the addiction:

  1. Talk to your doctor about alternative options to treat any pain you may have, whether it is acute or chronic.
  2. Inform him or her if you have either a history of substance abuse or mental health problems, and have them prescribe medication strength and quantities that are the result of an accurate diagnosis of your pain.
  3. If you are pregnant, discuss options such as opioid agonist therapy (OAT).
  4. Never be tempted to share with or sell your pain meds to anyone. Don’t use someone else’s meds either.
  5. Seek help immediately if you feel you have a problem or if you notice someone who does.
  6. Think about using yoga to gradually reverse the negative effects of the addiction/dependency, as regular practice makes the body stronger and fitter while the mind gains strength and focus.
  7. Get tips on securely storing and disposing of your pain meds properly, after the treatment is over.

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Here’s your complete guide to Emotional Well-being.

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Simona is a journalist who has worked with several leading publications in India over the last 17 years, writing on lifestyle topics and the arts, besides interviewing celebrities. She made the switch to public relations and headed the division as PR Manager at ITC Hotels’ flagship property, the ITC Grand Chola, but has since returned to her first love, journalism. Now she writes on food, which she is sincerely passionate about and wellness, which she finds fascinating and full of surprises. When she isn’t writing, she is busy playing the role of co-founder and communications director of The Bicycle Project, a six-year-old charity initiative that empowers tribal children in rural areas, while addressing the issue of urban waste.