The pain of watching someone you love waste away because of an addiction to drugs can be overwhelming. You may even find yourself afraid to take action. Though it can be a very hard task to perform, too often the intervention of spouse, family and friends is necessary in order to break through to someone suffering from drug dependency. In an effort to help you identify whether or not your loved one is in the throes of addiction, here are four common signs of which you should be aware.
First and foremost, denial ranks at the top of the list. Very few people are ever willing to admit that they have an addiction. They want to believe they are the ones in control, when really it is their habits that control them.
Drugs are classified as either depressants or stimulants and, therefore, can wildly alter the emotional balance of your loved one. Sudden periods of depression, bouts of aggression or outright hostility can each be spurred by the drive to feed the addiction. Such erratic behavior can result in problems at work or school, such as an inability to perform even the simplest tasks, being late or even unexplained absences. Disputes with coworkers and peers can quickly devolve due to the volatility of the addict’s mood.
New, Unhealthy Relationships and Criminal Behavior
One development you should definitely treat as a red flag is the arrival or insertion of new friends into your loved one’s life, friends he or she refuses either to speak about or introduce to you. Pay special attention to your loved one’s behavior in such cases, whether he or she is an adolescent or adult. Any age group can become susceptible to poor influences and peer pressure. Your loved one may act completely differently than he or she did before, possibly severing ties with family and old friends in favor of the new relationship.
In the worst case scenario, the new arrival might persuade your loved one to engage in criminal acts aside from buying and consuming drugs, such as theft, assault, selling drugs and so on.
Physical and Mental Health Issues
Eventually, continuous drug abuse can cause lasting or even permanent damage to the body. Fatigue, irregular sleeping patterns, dry mouth, nosebleeds, vomiting, deterioration of the tooth and gums, unusual cuts and bruises, sores, memory loss and persistent illness are all possible signs of drug addiction. In addition, the alteration of your loved one’s appearance can be accompanied by mental health symptoms such as lack of focus, compulsive actions, hearing voices and paranoia, to name a few.
You should know that many drug abusers want to stop but lack the strength of will to go through with this difficult process, preferring to withdraw instead. Many consider going to a drug rehab center, but drug abuse keeps them from acting. You can help your loved one by seeking out effective drug addiction treatments. South Coast Counseling’s inpatient drug treatment center specializes in helping drug abusers achieve a lasting recovery. Reach out to us today and let us help you through this trying time.