Key Terms

behind-the-counter drugs (BTCs): medications available for purchase without a prescription but requiring interaction with a pharmacist to access; policy for specific substances in some countries.

detoxification process (detox): an initial step in the treatment process where psychotropic substances (toxins) are safely removed from the body, minimize difficulty in withdrawal (stabilization), and support a transition to long-term treatment and recovery from addiction.

dextromethorphan (DXM): an active ingredient in many over-the-counter medications; may be abused as a psychotropic substance in extremely high doses.

medication assisted treatment (MAT): a combination of medications and behavioral therapy to treat a person’s substance use disorder.

over-the-counter drugs (OTCs): medications available for purchase without a prescription.

pharmacotherapy: therapy involving the administration of pharmaceutical drugs.

prescription drugs: substances/medications requiring a prescription produced by a licensed medical provider in order to legally purchase.

stabilization process: the process of safely removing abused substances from the human body; see detoxification.