It’s no secret that substance abuse is a form of escapism that ruins lives and provides a false sense of self. Individuals who fall prey to this injurious habit eventually experience damaging relationships with family and friends, weakening health, financial calamity, and legal troubles. In order to protect your loved ones, it’s important to notice clues that indicate someone close to you may need intervention.
According to the National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA), substance abuse attributes to over 600 billion dollars of spending in the United States every year. The drugs purchased include alcohol, tobacco, marijuana, inhalants, psychedelics, canniboids, and stimulants.
Many individuals begin viewing these kinds of substances as forms of recreation. However, addiction occurs when the chemicals being processed begin to affect the brain, unsettling its ability to transfer communication properly. As a result, a person’s self-control disappears, and they become dependent on the substance they initially viewed as an occasional outlet.
Fortunately, compulsive drug and alcohol use doesn’t come without its tell-tale signs of addiction. Most individuals may cave in to their bad habits behind closed doors, but there’s usually some way to identify their actions.
A person’s behavior is one factor to consider. Many individuals with an addiction to drugs or alcohol start to neglect their obligations, such as work, school, and household responsibilities. They may also become withdrawn and sulky which puts a strain on their relationships with parents, partners, children, friends, and colleagues. Excessive sleeping, twitching, and sniffling are common indicators as well.
Additionally, you should make note of physical appearance. Drug and alcohol abusers are sometimes characterized by extreme weight loss, body odor, and bloodshot eyes. Other common signs include constant sweating, slurred speech, dilated pupils, and nosebleeds.
Psychologically, drug addicts and alcoholics are prone to unexplained mood swings. You should be mindful of sudden outbursts, hyperactivity, and an indifference to critical events. Some individuals may be melodramatic or secretive.
Finally, you should study a person’s economic state. Most substance abusers always need to borrow money after they’ve gone on an expensive drug or alcohol binge. They lose sight of how to manage money effectively and easily slip into debt, trying to find ways to fund their next high.
The Substance Abuse and Mental Health Service Administration (SAMHSA) reported that 23.5 million people over the age of 12 needed professional treatment for drug or alcohol addiction in 2009. While this seems to denote a favorable amount of individuals choosing to face their demons, it’s also important to point out that many of them probably didn’t do it alone. Recognizing the signs of substance abuse within your community could be the driving force behind saving the life of your relative or close friend.