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The abuse of prescription medications refers to the use of such medicines for purposes of achieving a state of altered mood or intoxication, rather than as treatment for a medical or psychological condition. Categories of prescription medications that are most often subject to abuse include stimulants, analgesics, sedatives, and anxiolytic drugs. The person abusing the drugs may have received them using a valid prescription written by a physician qualified to prescribe, in which case the user is deliberately not following the prescribed dosage, or the drug user may obtain the medication from a relative or friend. In some cases, people will request the same drug from multiple health care providers in order to amass a greater quantity than would otherwise be possible.

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