Signs of Addiction and How to Tell if Someone is Addicted - ARISE

Signs of Addiction and How to Tell if Someone is Addicted - ARISE

Addiction affects every aspect of a person’s life. People who live with untreated addiction may face serious consequences to their physical health, emotional wellbeing, and relationships.

If you or someone you love live with addiction, you likely understand the physical and mental toll prolonged substance abuse can have on a person. Comprehensive substance abuse treatment can provide the support, coping skills, and tools you need to recover from addiction and embrace a healthy, sober lifestyle.

Prolonged substance use puts people at risk of developing a physical or emotional dependence on drugs or alcohol. For the best chance of a full recovery from addiction, you should begin treatment as soon as you recognize that your relationship with drugs or alcohol has become unhealthy. The signs of addiction can be difficult to identify and may not be what you imagine or have seen in popular media.

Recognizing whether or not someone is addicted can help you identify the need for treatment as early as possible. At Arise Treatment Center, we want you to have the information you need to recognize the signs of addiction and get the treatment you need. For more information about the supportive treatment programs we offer, reach out to our specialists today.

How to Tell if Someone is Using Drugs

In some cases, it can be difficult to tell if someone is using drugs. It may also be difficult to determine what substance they are using because symptoms vary from substance to substance. Some drugs may provide euphoria and energy while others make people feel calm or sedated.

Some of the physical and behavioral signs of drug use you might notice include:

  • Red eyes
  • Runny nose
  • Changes in sleep
  • Changes in energy levels
  • Dilated or constricted pupils
  • Physical agitation
  • Lack of coordination
  • Slurred or slow speech
  • Poor memory or concentration

Generally, watch out for changes in a person’s mood, appearance, or behavior. Someone who begins to use drugs may gain or lose weight quickly. They may have uncharacteristic mood swings or be unusually energetic or depressed. People who abuse drugs may begin to neglect their hygiene or start to spend time with a different group of people. They may lose interest in their hobbies or relationships.

People who develop an addiction often withdraw from their lives and spend a lot of time and energy on getting, using, and recovering from using drugs or alcohol.

How to Tell if Someone is Addicted

Addiction can develop after a period of drug or alcohol abuse. This condition is represented by a loss of control related to substance use. Most people who develop an addiction to drugs or alcohol require professional treatment to overcome it. Recognizing the signs of addiction can help you get the help you need as quickly as possible.

Some of the common behavioral signs of addiction include:

  • Mood changes–increased irritability or mood swings are common
  • Lying about or hiding their substance use
  • Isolation from friends or family
  • Falling behind at work, in school, or at home
  • Spending a lot of time getting, using, or recovering from using drugs or alcohol
  • Having cravings for drugs and alcohol
  • Experiencing symptoms of withdrawal when drugs or alcohol wear off

Someone who develops an addiction may experience a worsening of their mental health symptoms or may develop symptoms of a mental illness. Depression, anxiety, and paranoia are common in people with addiction.

Understanding the Signs of Addiction

In addition to general changes in a person’s behavior, other significant signs of addiction may develop over time.

Tolerance is one of the most important signs of addiction. Tolerance is defined as requiring more of a substance to get the desired effect. A person who begins using a substance may find that they need to take a higher dose more frequently to get the effects they experienced at first.

People who use drugs or alcohol for some time may develop tolerance. They may begin to drink or use drugs more often or in greater amounts. This can lead to physical dependence or addiction. Tolerance can develop in anyone who begins to use drugs or alcohol, regardless of other risk factors for addiction.

Addiction is a loss of control over a person’s substance use. People with addiction are often unable to stop using drugs, even when they face serious physical, emotional, legal, or financial consequences. Someone who is addicted to drugs or alcohol will likely continue to abuse substances until they get professional treatment.

Continued substance abuse may lead to a range of complex consequences. People who struggle with addiction may:

  • Get into trouble with the law (drunk or drugged driving, theft, possession, distribution, etc.)
  • Show up to work late, call out of work often, or be unable to maintain a job for long periods of time
  • Make multiple attempts to quit using drugs or alcohol that are ultimately unsuccessful
  • Have trouble maintaining relationships with loved ones
  • Experience devastating health issues including, but not limited to overdose, HIV/AIDS, hepatitis C, brain damage, organ failure, and certain types of cancer
  • Face extensive financial issues and economic instability

Find Help for Yourself or an Addicted Loved One

If you or someone you love are living with substance abuse or you want to learn more about recognizing the signs of a drug or alcohol problem, reach out to the specialists at Arise Treatment Center. We offer a range of addiction treatment programs designed to give people the tools they need to overcome addiction and live a healthy, fulfilling lifestyle.

If you have been waiting to get help, don’t wait any longer. Reach out to our staff today.