The addictive qualities of prescription drugs vary by the substance.
Generally speaking, prescription drugs may alter the chemistry in the brain, creating a physical dependency that tells the body that it needs a particular substance to function.
Alternatively, a person may become mentally addicted to using a prescription drug because they have conditioned themselves to use it during certain occasions (when bored, stressed, social, etc.).
In either case, the root cause of prescription drug misuse should be assessed. This will allow for the appropriate treatment to be chosen.