Recognizing the signs and symptoms of substance use disorder is the first step to getting help for yourself or a loved one. Substance abuse and addiction go hand-in-hand. Alcohol and drug addiction is a disease with physical and psychological symptoms like any other illness. Alcoholism and drug dependence can significantly impact a person’s life, such as changing their physical appearance or consuming their thoughts until it’s impossible to concentrate on anything else. If alcohol or drug abuse goes untreated, the consequences can be severe. Take a look at these eight warning signs of addiction to get the necessary help for yourself or a loved one.

Addiction doesn’t discriminate — it attacks. Read on to learn about 8 common signs of addiction

And, if you or a loved one are in Texas and ready to seek treatment…

Eight Warning Signs of Substance Use Disorder

1. Denial of Drug or Alcohol Addiction

You may notice secretive or suspicious behaviors if you suspect someone you know is experiencing alcohol or drug misuse. They may have alcohol hidden around the house, or whenever you suggest doing something together, they immediately mention an activity involving drinking or taking drugs. However, the second you ask them about their alcohol or drug use, they shut down or outright deny having a problem. 

This denial of alcohol or drug abuse could indicate an addiction. Individuals misusing substances will typically deny their addiction or do drugs secretly to avoid questions from loved ones. 

2. Changes in Behavior

A person struggling with addiction will often exhibit changes in their behavior or mood. For example, drug users may find falling asleep without drugs difficult, leading to increased doses or stealing others’ prescription drugs. Sudden mood swings can also occur. A person may feel depressed one day but energetic the next. 

Other behavioral warning signs of drug or alcohol abuse include:

  • Increased irritability
  • Unexplained absences
  • Social isolation or withdrawal
  • Lack of motivation
  • Issues at work or school
  • Secretive behavior
  • Trouble upholding commitments or responsibilities
alcohol or drug addiction warning signs

3. Loss of Control

If you no longer feel like you’re in control of your drug use, this may be a sign you’re struggling with drug addiction. Taking larger doses for the same effect as before, experiencing drug cravings and continuing to use drugs even if they lead to negative consequences are big warning signs of misusing drugs

People who keep doing drugs or drinking may not do it because they want to. Being addicted to a substance makes quitting extremely hard because of the withdrawal symptoms that may happen if they do. Professional treatment can help one get off alcohol or drugs through detox. Then when the drug wears off, proceed to inpatient or outpatient rehab to prevent relapse safely. 

4. Relationship Problems

Addiction can cause conflict with others at home, work or school. Family members or friends may become frustrated or angry seeing their loved one continue using drugs even though it harms them. A person with an addiction may also become less interested in family members or friends, becoming more withdrawn and losing contact with people. 

The physical effects of taking drugs or excessively drinking can also make it hard to concentrate at work or school, leading to complaints from colleagues or termination, depending on the severity of your behavior. 

It is with noting that keeping in touch will help those who have alcohol or drug use problems. Family and friends play an integral role as one of many support groups during the addiction treatment process. The involvement of a family member can have a significant positive impact on the effectiveness of addiction recovery.

The good times of yesteryear are achievable! It starts with one step…

Contact Texas’ leading mental health/addiction treatment program

5. Decrease in Daily Functioning

Mental health and substance use are often linked. According to the National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA), an individual may experience one or more symptoms of a mental health problem, such as depression or anxiety, because of their addiction. Signs of drug addiction can also include difficulty taking care of daily responsibilities. 

The effects of poor mental health can make it harder for drug users to function normally, resulting in strange sleep patterns, skipping personal hygiene routines, poor judgment or avoiding basic responsibilities and tasks. 

6. Physical Symptoms

While drug use is often associated with mental health issues, other physical signs and symptoms can also indicate a substance use problem, such as:

  • Dilated pupils
  • Sudden weight loss or weight gain
  • Bloodshot eyes
  • Poor physical condition
  • Slurred speech
  • Insomnia
  • Unusual body odors

Symptoms may get worse when you stop taking a drug or drinking. When you’ve built up a tolerance for a substance and suddenly stop taking it, you may experience withdrawal symptoms, including:

  • Shakiness, jumpiness and trembling
  • Nausea and vomiting
  • Confusion
  • Hallucinations
  • Seizures
  • Headaches and fever
  • Sudden mood swings
  • Unexplained paranoia
  • Inattentiveness
  • Angry outbursts
man with physical symptoms of drug misuse

7. Financial Problems

An individual may experience financial consequences because of their susbtance abuse. They may spend more money to maintain their alcohol or drug habit instead of taking care of necessary expenses such as bills. If someone tends to move around a lot and is struggling to maintain stable housing even with a steady income, this could also be a sign their money is being used for something else. 

You may share a household with a person struggling with substance abuse. If that’s the case, keep a close eye out that no money goes missing. Out of desperation, an individual may steal money or run down a bank account to fund their drug use habit. 

8. Switching Doctors Frequently

People with an addiction may seek many health care providers in a short timeframe hoping to score a drug prescription. They may also frequently ask a doctor for new prescriptions. Once that doctor refuses to comply, they’ll try their luck elsewhere.

Signs of prescription drug abuse include keeping a stockpile of drugs in their medicine cabinet or accumulating prescriptions. The most commonly misused prescription drugs include:

  • Opioids such as oxycodone or hydrocodone
  • Stimulants such as Ritalin or Adderall
  • Antianxiety medications such as Xanax or Valium

If an individual seems unusually energetic, is sleeping less or is suffering from severe mood swings, they may be misusing prescription drugs. 

Put the drink down and pick up the phone! The road to recovery starts today — it start with you!

Alta Loma will address the root causes of addiction…

Seek Treatment for Substance Abuse at Alta Loma in Texas

Substance abuse can affect a person’s life. And without proper treatment, drug use can ruin life for good. If you or a loved one is struggling with a drug or alcohol addiction, it may be time to seek help and treatment for substance abuse. Alta Loma in Georgetown, TX, offers various services designed to help individuals beat their addiction and live a drug-free life.

Call us today at 866-457-3843 to speak with a trained professional and take the first step toward getting the help you need.