"Drug-addicted" = addicted to drugs or medicine ?

Hi everyone !

I was reading a biography about Elvis Presley and saw that at the end of his life, he was "drug-addicted".
I already knew that he was addicted to medicine. But if I hadn't, and out of context, how would I have made the difference between medicine and drugs ?

It's hard for me to understand because we have two different words in French.

Maybe, out of context, it's better to say "addicted to medicine" ?

Thanks for answering !
  • hairlover45

    Senior Member
    English - American
    Without some explanatory context, you would have no way of knowing. The more common expression is "addicted to prescription drugs", or "addicted to pain medication," or something similar. Otherwise, "addicted to drugs" or "drug addict" suggests illegal drugs, such as heroin or methamphetamines.
    < Previous | Next >