How to Identify Drug Addiction and Alcohol Dependency

Are you struggling with drug and/or alcohol addiction? Do you suspect a loved one might be? Drug and alcohol addiction is a pervasive issue in this country that affects the lives of countless millions. In fact, more than 8 percent of the U.S. population is reportedly dependent on drugs and/or alcohol, according to the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA). And sadly, more than 94 percent of these individuals claim to not need treatment.

There are many steps to addiction recovery and the first step is to admit there is a problem. Knowing the symptoms of addiction can help you or a loved one break through the denial that is common in addiction. The next step is to seek addiction treatment. It cannot be stressed enough that addiction is a complicated disease that requires professional treatment.

What are the symptoms of drug or alcohol dependency?

  • The individual relies on alcohol and/or drug use to function in daily life.
  • The individual has an increasingly high tolerance for alcohol and/or the drug(s) of choice.
  • The individual experiences withdrawal symptoms, like “the shakes” or shaky hands in the morning. This is a common withdrawal symptom of alcoholics. Other withdrawal symptoms include:
  • – Anxiety
  • – Insomnia
  • – Depression
  • – Irritability and moodiness
  • – Fatigue
  • – Loss of appetite
  • – Headache
  • – Severe withdrawal can lead to seizures, fever, mental confusion and hallucinations. Seek medical treatment immediately if you experience severe withdrawal symptoms.
  • The individual cannot manage his or her alcohol or drug intake. An addict will typically lose control and binge drink or abuse drugs, despite efforts not to.
  • The individual has become regularly moody and irritable.
  • The individual may exhibit odd behavioral changes, such as not sleeping or sleeping throughout the day.
  • The individual may resort to stealing to support their habit.
  • The individual may become very secretive and defensive.
  • The individual has tried repeatedly to quit abusing drugs and or alcohol, but has been unable to succeed on his or her own.
  • The individual’s life revolves around drugs and or alcohol. An addict will spend much of his or her time consumed by planning to abuse and actually abusing drugs and or alcohol.
  • The individual’s life is negatively impacted by drugs and or alcohol. He or she may miss work repeatedly, experience problems at home, distance him or herself from family and friends, etc

What if you think you have a problem?

According to the Center for Behavioral Health Statistics and Quality, nearly 40 percent of individuals admitted for substance abuse treatment report both alcohol and drug dependency. Often, an addict will present drug and alcohol dependency, along with mental disorders. This can be especially challenging in recovery. This is why 12 Keys Rehab has designed a dual-diagnosis treatment program that serves the needs of individuals with multiple addictions and related mental issues. This is a highly regarded and comprehensive recovery program. For more information about our leading treatment program, please call us at 866-331-6779.

The Addiction Blog