If you’re addicted to drugs, you could have problems in relationships and at work, home, and school. Whether you or a loved one have substance use issues, understanding this problem better can empower you to help yourself. Read on to learn about the warning signs of drug addiction.
Common Drug Abuse Symptoms and Signs
Knowing the signs of drug abuse can help you understand whether your health, family life, school, and job are at risk. If you experience these signs and symptoms, you can gain clarity about what’s wrong. Watch for these common signs:
- Having legal trouble such as driving under the influence or being arrested
- Taking risks while using such as having unprotected sex or driving
- Being irresponsible at home, work, or school
Psychological Warning Signs
At first glance, you may think your loved one is just going through a phase or is unhappy at the moment. But there could be something else going on that you don’t know about. Psychological signs can include things like angry outbursts, appearing anxious for no reason, or an unexplained change in attitude or personality.
Frequent drug use can lead to subtle and more obvious changes in behavior. For example, you might start spending time with different friends or hanging out at places you probably wouldn’t usually go to otherwise. Your behavior may become suspicious, secretive, and dishonest. Further, you could skip school or miss work more often and perform poorly at both.
Physical Warning Signs
Physical warning signs of drug abuse can mean you or your loved one have poor health. You may have trouble sleeping, have changes in appetite, or experience impaired coordination. Other signs are changes in physical appearance, bloodshot eyes, and unusual smells on the body, among others.
Signs of Commonly Abused Drugs
Different substances can have varied effects on someone. For instance, the warning signs of heroin are needle marks, contracted pupils, vomiting, and loss of appetite, among others. On the other hand, Valium, Xanax, and GBH are depressants that can cause sleepiness, poor judgment, contracted pupils, slurred speech, and more. Other drugs people tend to misuse are alcohol, stimulants, hallucinogens, and inhalants.
What You Can Do
Seeking help can improve the chances of yourself or your loved one recovering. If signs and symptoms are present, a professional can aid with staging an intervention. You can also research treatment programs that include therapy and medical detox. This can be helpful for addressing underlying issues.
The First Step to Stop an Addiction
If you’re addicted to drugs, it’s important to know that anyone can stop being addicted. In fact, this is a treatable disease with proper support and treatment. The first and most difficult step is to admit there’s a problem. For one, a substance use disorder isn’t a moral failing. It affects the brain. This can make you look for reasons to justify and make excuses to keep abusing drugs. This means you’ll have to be brave enough to admit to the underlying causes of your addiction. If you don’t feel ready to talk to family and friends for support, you can speak to a doctor or therapist.
Change Your Lifestyle
When you quit abusing drugs, you have the chance to change in a positive way. Appreciating this can enhance your sense of freedom. For one thing, you can reduce stress by learning meditation, improving sleep quality, and focusing on your goals. You can also spend time with people who genuinely care about you. This can mean finding new friends and hanging out in healthy environments. Additionally, what you do in your free time matters. While volunteering can make your life more meaningful, doing creative activities such as art can be enjoyable and improve self-esteem. All things considered, knowing the signs of drug addiction can empower you to do something about it. Recognizing you have a problem can lead you to recover and live a better life. It’s important to remember that treatment works and you can get help at any time. Our counselors are available 24 hours a day. Call 833-846-5669.