Prescription drugs

Doctors prescribe medications for specific reasons. Prescription medications can carry a risk of harm. This risk increases if these drugs are used in a way other than prescribed.


Pharmaceutical and prescription drugs provide many benefits – they cure illness and enhance our quality of life. You buy them from the chemist, usually with a doctor’s prescription. Others are available over the counter, without a prescription.

Most people use these medications the right way, following the instructions from their health professional. But taking medications in a way that does not follow your doctor’s specific instructions can lead to harm.

What does non-prescribed use mean?

The non-prescribed use of medications can include:

  • Taking more medication than prescribed or directed on the packet, either in one dose or over time
  • Taking medication in a different way to what’s recommended, such as injecting or snorting
  • Using medication without a prescription and ongoing medical supervision
  • Combining it with other drugs, including alcohol
  • Undertaking activities that medication affects, like driving, working or looking after children
  • Sharing prescription medication with friends, family or colleagues.

More information on prescription drugs

For more information, visit the Alcohol and Drug Foundation website:

Long term pain from sport

The health benefits associated with sport are well known. However, many players have to deal with injury occasionally. 

A bad injury can be life-changing. As sports lovers and team players, it’s important to be aware of the best ways to treat and manage pain.

Pain is said to be chronic if it persists beyond the normal healing time of about three months.

People who play sport may use prescribed and over-the-counter medications, anti-inflammatories and other pharmaceuticals such as opioids to help them recover from injuries. Some players or athletes may take pain-relieving medications to help them continue to play or work while injured. 

If you do have chronic pain, there are alternatives that are safer than opioids. Other options can help you to manage your pain more effectively, getting you back to the club quicker.

Talk to your GP or another health professional. 

Opioid drug facts