Pregabalin Addiction: A Hidden Epidemic in the UK

Pregabalin Bottle

Imagine a middle-aged woman living in a quiet town in the English countryside. Lately, your life has been spiraling. You've lost your job, relationships are strained, and your health is deteriorating. The culprit? Pregabalin, a prescription drug that you were initially taking to relieve chronic pain. What started as a legitimate medical treatment is now become a full-blown addiction.

The Rise of Pregabalin Addiction in the UK

Your story is not unique. Pregabalin, also known by the brand name Lyrica, is a medication that is commonly prescribed for conditions such as epilepsy, neuropathic pain, and anxiety. However, in recent years, there has been a sharp increase in the non-medical use of pregabalin, particularly among young people.

According to the National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA), pregabalin is now one of the most commonly abused prescription drugs in the UK. Data from the Crime Survey for England and Wales (CSEW) shows that in 2020/21, an estimated 2.2% of adults aged 16 to 59 had used pregabalin non-medically in the past year.

The Devastating Impact of Pregabalin Addiction

Pregabalin addiction can have severe consequences for both the individual and society as a whole.

  • Physical Health: Chronic pregabalin use can lead to a range of physical health problems, including dizziness, drowsiness, blurred vision, and respiratory depression.
  • Mental Health: Pregabalin can induce anxiety, depression, and psychosis, even in individuals with no prior history of mental illness.
  • Social Impact: Addiction to pregabalin can destroy relationships, damage careers, and lead to financial ruin.
  • Economic Burden: The societal costs associated with pregabalin addiction include increased healthcare expenses, lost productivity, and crime.

Seeking Help for Pregabalin Addiction

Overcoming pregabalin addiction requires professional help. If you or someone you know is struggling with pregabalin use, there are numerous resources available to assist you.

  • Treatment Centers: Specialized treatment centers offer a range of evidence-based therapies, such as cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) and contingency management, to help individuals break free from addiction.
  • Support Groups: Support groups like Narcotics Anonymous (NA) and Alcoholics Anonymous (AA) provide a safe and supportive environment for individuals in recovery.
  • Online Resources: Websites such as provide comprehensive information on addiction, treatment options, and support services.


Pregabalin addiction is a serious public health concern in the UK. By raising awareness about the risks associated with this drug and providing access to effective treatment, we can empower individuals to overcome addiction and reclaim their lives.


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