Some individuals have the ability to use prescription or recreational drugs without experiencing addiction or negative consequences. For others, substance use may lead to issues at school, home, work, and in relationships, leaving you feeling ashamed, helpless or isolated.
If you are concerned about a family member’s, friends, or your own drug use, it is vital that you understand that assistance is available. Studying about the nature of addiction and drug abuse—what it looks like, how it develops, and why it may have such an intense grip —will provide you better knowledge of the issue and how you can best handle it.
Understanding addiction, drug abuse and drug use
Individuals experiment with drugs for different reasons. Most initially try out drugs because they’re curious, want to have a good time, because they see friends doing it, or they’re trying to improve athletic performance or ease an additional issue, like depression, anxiety or stress. Use does not automatically cause abuse, and there isn’t any specific degree where drug use transitions from casual use to being problematic.
It will vary by individual. Drug addiction and abuse is less about the quantity of substance taken or frequency, and more about drug uses consequences. No matter how little or how often you are using, if your use is leading to problems within your life—at home, school or work, or in relationships—you potentially have a drug addiction or abuse issue.
Why do some users become addicted, whereas other ones do not?
Like most other disease and conditions, vulnerability to addiction varies from one person to another. Your mental health, genes, social environment and family all play a part in addiction. Risk factors which boost your vulnerability involve:
Method of administration—injecting or smoking a drug might boost its addictive potential
Early drug use
Mental disorders like anxiety and depression
Neglect, abuse, or additional traumatic childhood experiences
History of addiction in the family
Symptoms and Signs of Drug Addiction and Abuse
Even though different drugs possess varying physical effects, addiction’s symptoms are similar. Check if you see yourself in these signs and symptoms of drug addiction and abuse. If the answer is yes, consider speaking with somebody concerning your substance use.
Typical drug abuse signs and symptoms
- You are neglecting your responsibilities at home, work or school because of your substance use.
- You are using under harmful conditions or taking risks as you get high, like using dirty needles, driving while on drugs, or engaging in unprotected sex.
- Drug use is causing legal trouble, like disorderly conduct arrests, or stealing to support your drug habit, or driving while under the influence.
- Drug use is leading to issues in your relationships, like fights with your family members or partner, the loss of old friends and an unhappy boss
Typical drug addiction signs and symptoms
- You have built a drug tolerance up. You have to use more of the substance to experience the same effect you once attained with smaller quantities.
- You use to relieve or avoid symptoms of withdrawal. If you go without drugs for too long, you experience symptoms like restlessness, nausea, depression, insomnia, anxiety, shaking and sweating.
- You have lost control over the drug use. You oftentimes use more than you expected, although you told yourself you would not. You might want to cease in using, yet you’re powerless.
- Your life will revolve around using drugs. You spend lots of time thinking about and using drugs, discovering how you can get them, and recovering from their effects.
- You have abandoned tasks once enjoyed, like socializing, sports, and hobbies, due to your drug use.
- You continually use drugs, in spite of knowing it is hurting you. It is leading to major issues in your life—infections, blackouts, depression, mood swings, paranoia—yet you use anyway.
Warning signals that a family member or friend is abusing drugs
Drug users oftentimes attempt to hide their symptoms and downplay the issue. If you are concerned that a family member or friend may be using drugs, search for these signs:
Physical drug abuse signs
- Impaired coordination, slurred speech or tremors.
- Unusual odors on clothing, body or breath.
- Deterioration of personal grooming habits, physical appearance.
- Changes in sleep patterns or appetite. Sudden weight gain or weight loss.
- Bloodshot eyes, pupils smaller or larger than usual.
Behavioral signs of drug abuse
- Constantly getting into trouble (illegal activities, accidents, fights).
- Sudden change in hobbies, favorite hangouts and friends.
- Engaging in suspicious or secretive behaviors.
- Unexplained necessity for money or financial issues. Might steal or borrow to obtain it.
- Drop in performance or attendance at school or work.
Psychological drug abuse signs
- Appears paranoid, anxious, or fearful, without cause.
- Appears ‘spaced out’ or lethargic; lack of motivation.
- Spans of unusual giddiness, agitation or hyperactivity.
- Sudden angry outbursts, irritability, or mood swings.
- Unexplained change in attitude or personality.
Signs of Typically Abused Drugs
- Marijuana: Red, glassy eyes; inappropriate laughter followed up by sleepiness; loud talking, lack of motivation, interest; weight loss or gain.
- Depressants (involving GHB, Valium, Xanax): Drunk-like; contracted pupils; clumsiness; difficulty concentrating; sleepiness; slurred speech; poor judgment.
- Stimulants (involving crystal meth, cocaine, amphetamines): Anxiety; hyperactivity; dilated pupils; irritability; euphoria; excessive talking followed up by excessive sleeping during odd times or depression; might go lengthy spans of time without sleeping or eating; dry nose and mouth; weight loss.
- Inhalants (vapors, aerosols, glues): Impaired vision, thought and memory; watery eyes; rashes around the mouth and nose or secretions from the nose; nausea and headaches; drowsiness; appearance of intoxication; changes in appetite; poor muscle control; irritability; anxiety; a lot of aerosols/cans in the garbage.
- Hallucinogens (PCP,LSD): Irrational and bizarre behavior that includes hallucinations, aggression, paranoia; dilated pupils; detachment from people; mood swings; confusion; slurred speech; absorption with other objects or self.
- Heroin: No response of pupils to light; contracted pupils; sleeping during unusual times; needle marks; vomiting; sweating; sniffling; coughing, loss of appetite; twitching.
Overcoming Addiction to Drugs
As you are experiencing problems with drug addiction, sobriety might seem as if it’s a goal that is impossible. However, recovery is not out of reach, no matter how hopeless the situation may seem. Change is probable with the proper support and treatment, and by getting to the root cause of the addiction. Do not give up—even if you have previously tried and failed. The path to recovery oftentimes includes setbacks, pitfalls and bumps. However, by assessing the issue and considering change, you are already on the right path.
Treatment for Drug Addiction
Locate a recovery support group for drug addiction. Such groups may be an invaluable guidance, encouragement and assistance source. Most use sponsors (prior addicts with experience and time staying sober) to offer support as you are handling the temptation to use.
Locate the proper program for drug treatment. Several kinds of substance abuse programs are out there. Quality programs won’t just address the drug abuse yet additionally any other life issues contributing to the addiction.
The purpose of our website is to provide free support for victims of drug and alcohol abuse and their families. We want to help you find the best care for your needs. We have an around-the-clock call center that assists addicts and their families in finding the most appropriate treatment center for your needs. Other places you can call just pressure you into signing up for their specific facility. We actually assess the needs of each person, consider your resources and insurance (if any) and hold your hand through each step of the process.
Paying for Treatment in the United States
Costs for alcohol treatment widely vary depending upon your individual treatment requirements, insurance, and facility. Below are tips to assist you in paying for treatment:
Check with your insurance. Call the number upon the back of the card, if you have insurance to ask about your substance abuse and mental health coverage. Figure out what the out-of-pocket costs are going to be, including co-payment and deductible amounts.Search into programs offering reduced or sliding scale options for payment. The purpose of our website is to provide free support for victims of drug and alcohol abuse and their families. We want to help you find the best care for your needs. We have an around-the-clock call center that assists addicts and their families in finding the most appropriate treatment center for your needs. Other places you can call just pressure you into signing up for their specific facility. We actually assess the needs of each person, consider your resources and insurance (if any) and hold your hand through each step of the process.
Get help today.
Use our inquiry form or contact us at 1 (888) 523-4332 if someone you know or you are looking for an inpatient rehabilitation facility to contact an advisor who can be of assistance.