Signs and Symptoms of a Substance Abuse ProblemApril 16, 2015
While the reasons why an individual falls into the unhealthy and dangerous overuse of drugs, alcohol, or prescription medication are complex, when the problem does become large enough, certain signs and symptoms develop which can help us identify the issue. Substance abuse is in itself a mental health issue, and the users themselves can be victims, which is why it should be quickly diagnosed and treated before things get out of hand. The following are signs of substance use disorders and are provided to assist loved ones or others regarding what to be aware of and when to seek professional help.
Overuse without intention
Many suffering from addiction may not intend to use a lot of the substance they’re addicted to, but may wind up having a lot more without realizing it. They have a low level of control over how much they use. For example, an alcoholic may promise him/herself or others that he/she will only have one glass of wine at dinner, but then end up having much more.
Inability to stop
Many people with a substance abuse problem know that they are taking too much and may try to stop without success. This is a sign they may need professional help in order to quit for good.The causes of the problem may go much deeper than lack of willpower, and these issues may need to be addressed first.
Time and resources wasted on substances
You should also pay attention to the amount of time, money and resources that the individual spends on the habit, either trying to acquire, use, or recover from the effects of the substance, or just thinking or worrying about the next fix.
Neglect of responsibilities and relationships
Along with wasted time, often one’s responsibilities and relationships will also be neglected. The individual may begin arriving late for school or work, miss work or school altogether, show decrease in performance, avoid social gatherings or neglect the home and family. Those suffering from substance abuse problems often end up sabotaging their relationships, and their lives, because of their substance use behaviors.
Using despite dangerous consequences
Substance use may be posing a threat to the health and safety of the user, including dangerous side effects. However, even when the user knows about and may be experiencing these effects, he or she still can’t seem to stop.
The person may now find himself or herself using a greater amount of the substance in question in order to feel the same effects. They may compulsively seek the same effects that they experienced when they first started using the substance, but their use no longer provides the same relief or experience without increasing the amount.
Seeking Substance Abuse Help for a Loved One
If you suspect someone close to you may be abusing a substance, it is important to get immediate help from an accredited provider of mental health and substance abuse services, such as Crossroads at the David Lawrence Center in Naples, Florida.
At Crossroads, we offer a full continuum of substance abuse treatment services, including inpatient detoxification, residential and intensive outpatient treatment, as well as aftercare services. Our mission is to empower individuals to help them heal from their addiction and to experience life-changing wellness.
To seek help for a family member or loved one, click here or call us 24/7 at (239) 354-1428.