There are signs that can point to a serious drug or alcohol addiction. Because it’s common to experience a strong force of denial when addicted to a drug, the worse life gets, the easier it is to make excuses. And often, this is precisely why people have to hit rock bottom in order to finally turn their life around. Yet, there’s a chance that if you knew the signs that point to a serious addiction you might be encouraged to get help – even before you hit the bottom.
The first sign is the amount of time you are thinking and daydreaming about your drug of choice. When there is an overwhelming amount of thinking and fantasizing about drinking or getting high, then there might be an addiction. Generally, people think about their day, what needs to get done, their family, or the issues that they’re facing. However, thinking about drinking or drug use all day or frequently throughout the day can indicate a problem.
Another sign of addiction is drinking or using drugs when life gets stressful. Although it might appear that you have control over your drug use, the truth is it often happens when you’re feeling anxious, angry, or depressed. Consistently using drugs as a means for coping with life can be another indication that an addiction is present. Addiction often arises partly out of a need for self-nurturing.
Along these lines, it’s common to use drinking or drug use as a means to self-medicate. If you experience plenty of anxiety or an overwhelming amount of depression, drug use is commonly used as a coping tool. Those who are addicted to drugs or alcohol are often looking for relief from challenging emotions or for a way to better function at home or at work.
When someone is addicted to a drug, there’s often a false belief that he or she is in control of their use. Yet, one of the classic signs of addiction is the lack of control around their drug of choice. For instance, there might be a part of the self that wants to stop and yet you continue to use the drug. You might feel that you want to stop after two drinks, but you continue until you black out. Despite these lack of control experiences and the tendency to be compulsive with using drugs or alcohol, a person often believes that they have their drugging or drinking under control.
Lastly, a clear sign of addiction is when your life is falling apart. If you’re at risk of losing your job or if your marriage is on the rocks, there might be an addiction. It’s easy to categorize life and believe that the addiction has no bearing on the happenings in your life. Yet, addiction has a destructive quality. Relationships, career, physical health, and family life can all begin to deteriorate. All addictions lead to the spiritual, emotional, physical, and social destruction of the addict.
If you’re seeing these signs in your life, contact a mental health provider today.
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