(WHTM) — If you rely on medications, shortages are scary. Here’s why millions of Americans have been struggling with shortages of prescription medicines ever since the pandemic hit three years ago.

While most things are getting back to normal, why are some medication shortages getting worse?

Christine Wood has family members who have been taking Adderall for ADHD for several years. But in the past few months, she says, “It has become harder and harder to find these medications.”

Every pharmacy near Wood has been out of the generic version.

Get traffic alerts from the abc27 mobile app for the latest local delays and road closures

“You check on it and is not there, and the reason is they don’t have the generic. Insurance wants you to buy the generic to the name brand,” Wood added.

Wood has been forced to buy the much more expensive name-brand medications, which insurance won’t cover.

“They can’t get it in generic, but you can pay for it out of pocket. I believe my last order was going to be $475,” she said.

Many families simply can’t afford that, and Adderall is just one medication in short supply right now, according to pharmacists.

Other drugs in short supply include:

  • Amoxicillin, an antibiotic
  • Epinephrine, used in the popular “Epi-pens”
  • Prednisone, for asthma
  • Ozempic, for diabetes and weight loss

An MSNBC investigation blames a combination of record demand, plus shortages of key ingredients from foreign countries.

Doctor Andrew Sylvester says your doctor may be able to help.

“They simply can’t find a pharmacy that has any. That’s when we recommend that they talk with their physician, who is prescribing their medication, about other alternatives,” Sylvester said.

Get the latest Pennsylvania politics and election news with abc27 newsletters!

Wood says she can’t afford to pay hundreds of more dollars per month.

“People can’t afford the name brands. And if your insurance won’t agree to pay for these name brands since there are no generics available, people are going without medications,” Wood said.

Until Congress or the FDA loosen the rules, medication shortages are likely to continue. Talk to your doctor about other options so you don’t waste your money.