Substance abuse does not discriminate. It impacts people and families from all walks of life and backgrounds. Substance abuse habits can develop from the overuse of prescription drugs, getting caught up with the wrong crowd, or they can be triggered by trauma.
Regardless of who you are, or where you come from, it’s important to know that you’re not alone when struggling with the impacts of substance abuse.
If you suspect that your loved one has a problem with substances, there are certain signs to look for. If these signs of substance abuse are evident, then it’s best to get the help of an experienced and safe mental health and substance abuse disorder treatment provider.
Five Signs Of Substance Abuse
Currently, 841,000 people suffer from serious mental illness in Florida, and nearly half of the population struggles with less serious mental health disorders. In addition, nearly 8% of adults in Florida suffer from substance abuse or dependency.
There are many signs of substance abuse, mainly:
- Habitual use – uncontrolled use of substances in both public and private
- Change in behavior – lack of interest and change in routine
- Mood changes – irritability, depression and lack of energy
- Altered appearance – due to physical symptoms and lack of grooming
- Financial misconduct – theft, bad financial management, and regularly borrowing money
The chances are that your loved ones could be dependent on various substances without you even realizing it. Perhaps you are struggling yourself? Without help, these habits can break-up families and loved ones, negatively impact communities, and destroy lives.
There are certain signs that indicate someone is struggling with substance abuse. By simply being supportive and aware of the situation, you can start your loved one on their first step to recovery.
Florida providers wrote 60.9 opioid prescriptions for every 100 persons in 2017. Opioids are one of the top five most addictive substances in the world. A sure sign of substance abuse is when you continue taking opioids even after the medicinal need is no longer there.
The increased tolerance means that more of the drug is needed to feel the same effect. This often leads to addiction.
Alcohol is another highly addictive substance. In fact, 17 million adults older than 18 in the United States experienced alcohol use disorder in 2012. Obsessive drinking, lack of control, and drinking in private are all habitual drinking habits that are a sign of substance abuse.
Change In Behavior
When someone is addicted to substances, they become increasingly reliant on the drug and it consumes their mind. They will often wonder how they can get hold of the drug when they will have access again and pondering how they’ll feel once the drug wears off.
This has a direct impact on an individual’s behavior. Previous priorities are no longer important and they may lose interest in activities that previously brought them joy – whether it be playing sports or hanging out with friends.
Other behavioral changes include sleeping a lot more (or less), the desire for more privacy and a drop in performance at work or school.
Their mood may also be increasingly irritable, depressed, and uninterested, often affecting relationships with their loved ones.
Be prepared to be met with a defensive response when asking your loved one about any potential issues they may be struggling with.
Feelings of shame and guilt often accompany the abuse of substances and can result in a defensive attitude. Just because someone denies their habits, it doesn’t mean that they are not struggling.
If your loved one is struggling with substance abuse, their physical appearance will be a sure sign. It’s very normal for someone struggling with addiction to neglect their physical appearance. Grooming is no longer a priority and they may begin wearing dirty or inappropriate clothing.
In addition, their physical bodies will begin to take a strain. This can be seen in weight loss, bloodshot eyes, poor skin tone, and a noticeable lack of energy.
Have you noticed that valuable belongings are going missing mysteriously? We never like to think that someone that we love could be stealing from us, but this is the reality for many people who abuse substances. Perhaps your loved one keeps on asking to borrow money but never pays it back?
When struggling with addiction, individuals will do whatever it takes to get the money to fund their habits. Often times this involves stealing – even from those that they love.
You may also notice that they are unable to effectively manage their finances, such as not paying bills on time.
Expert Help For Effective Recovery
The journey to overcome substance abuse is not an easy road. Substance abuse is not only a habitual problem that needs healing, but it is also a medical one that requires expert treatment to be effective.
Early intervention is important for a successful recovery, and looking out for signs of substance abuse is a great start. At Fifth Street Counseling Center we take it one step further and offer expert journey-focused therapy to help your loved one overcome their substance abuse.
Being financially restricted should not be a reason to not get help. At Fifth Street Counseling, we offer various treatments for those on Florida Medicaid, meaning that you can still receive help despite earning a lower income.
We want to see healing in yours and your loved one’s life. Call us today at (954)797-5222 to find out how we can provide the support and guidance that you need.