Saturday, March 2, 2024

Sign Of Addiction To Drugs

Is Addiction In The Mind Or The Body

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Addiction involves both the mind and the bodyand every other facet of existence, because they all interact. There is no real distinction between physical addiction and psychological addiction. Substances of abuse affect the reward system of the brain, mediated by the neurotransmitter dopamine. Substance-induced physical changes to the part of the brain that responds to dopamine progressively power the motivation to seek the drug again and again, and, at the same time, lower the capacity for self-control. The physical changes to the pleasure-experiencing centers of the brain induce physical changes to the prefrontal cortex, weakening the capacity for decision-making and impulse control.

What Are The Effects Of Abusing Prescription Drugs

Misusing or abusing prescription drugs means taking medication in a way or amount other than prescribed. It is also an unhealthy pattern of substance use that causes significant impairment or distress.

Furthermore, prescription drugs side effects can be both short-term and long-term. How prescription drugs affect a person depends on the type of prescription drug, the amount being misused, the length of addiction, and other factors.

Signs Of Drug Use In Teenagers

Its especially important for parents to have a conversation with their teenager about drugs if they notice any signs of drug use or abuse.

Signs of drug use in teenagers may include:

  • dramatic changes in mood or behavior
  • a new friend group
  • spending a lot of time alone or with new friends
  • weight loss or gain or other changes in appearance
  • reduced interest in hobbies and other activities they enjoy
  • feeling unable to stop or control drug use

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Why Is Prescription Drug Addiction Such A Big Problem

Most prescription drug addictions involve either opioids, stimulants, depressants, and tranquilizers. Opioids, for example, stimulate the brains reward system causing pleasant, care-free feelings.

But, this feeling wears off and can leave people craving the feeling from opioids. With continued use, the body starts to need it to function correctly. At this point, tolerance and dependence have begun.

Addiction creates problems in every aspect of a persons life. From relationships to work and school and mental and physical health, the side effects of prescription drugs can destroy it all.

Can People Get Addicted To Any Drug

Heroin Addiction Signs and Symptoms

Addiction hinges on many factors, only some of which have to do with the properties of a drug. It is possible to get addicted to a psychoactive substance that produces a pleasurable effect, but by no means do the majority of people who consume such substances get addicted. For example, many people are medically treated with opioid painkillers for a period of time and easily discontinue medication when pain remits. Likewise, alcohol is consumed widely around the world with meals and in social situations without resulting in addiction.

One of the most important factors influencing attractiveness of regular substance abuse is the existence of significant opportunities for establishing goals and experiencing meaningful rewards in life. Under such circumstances, drugs can hold little allure. Research demonstrates, for example, that poverty is a strong contributor to drug use, because it imposes many barriers to resources and impediments to achieving individual goals. Similarly, unemployment is a significant independent risk factor for substance use and for relapse after treatment. Researchers have long observed that alcohol use increases during recessions.

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Does Psychological Dependence Exist

Psychological dependence is a term sometimes used to indicate the mental processes of addiction, but it has no real meaning given current understanding of the way the brain works. There is no real difference between physical addiction and psychological addiction. Addiction is one of those conditions that demonstrates it is not possible to distinguish between physical and psychological aspects of behavior.

Nevertheless, some people erroneously believe that processes such as withdrawal are distinctly physical while other feature of addiction, such as drug cravings or the inability to stop using a substance, are purely psychological. In fact, inability to regulate use results from a physiological processprogressive weakening of the neural circuitry in the brains executive control center in response to repeated use of a dopamine-activating substance. Cravings, or deep desire for a substance, arise from alterations in reactivity patterns of nerves in the brains reward center.

Confusion arises in part because of historical misunderstanding: It was once thought that withdrawal was the defining feature of addiction and every other aspect of addiction did not reflect physical processes. It is now known that withdrawal symptoms are not an invariable feature of addictionthey do not occur with addiction to hallucinogens, for exampleand that all facets of addiction reflect physical changes in brain circuitry, and those changes are reversible after substance use stops.

Why Do People Take Drugs

In general, people take drugs for a few reasons:

  • To feel good. Drugs can produce intense feelings of pleasure. This initial euphoria is followed by other effects, which differ with the type of drug used. For example, with stimulants such as cocaine, the high is followed by feelings of power, self-confidence, and increased energy. In contrast, the euphoria caused by opioids such as heroin is followed by feelings of relaxation and satisfaction.
  • To feel better. Some people who suffer from social anxiety, stress, and depression start using drugs to try to feel less anxious. Stress can play a major role in starting and continuing drug use as well as relapse in patients recovering from addiction.
  • To do better. Some people feel pressure to improve their focus in school or at work or their abilities in sports. This can play a role in trying or continuing to use drugs, such as prescription stimulants or cocaine.
  • Curiosity and social pressure. In this respect, teens are particularly at risk because peer pressure can be very strong. Adolescence is a developmental period during which the presence of risk factors, such as peers who use drugs, may lead to substance use.

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Physical Signs Of Drug Addiction

If someone misuses drugs or alcohol, they may exhibit numerous physical signs of drug abuse. Some of these signs may be readily apparent, while others are easily hidden or occur as gradual changes.

Signs of benzodiazepine abuse may include:

  • Similar symptoms as alcohol intoxication, without the smell of alcohol on the breath
  • Missing prescription pills

Social Signs That Someone Is On Drugs

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New Friend Group or Hangout Spots. When someone is sliding into addiction, they tend to hang out with people who also use their drug of choice, or use any kind of substance for that matter. Someone may begin to distance themselves from their old friends or loved ones that may try to get them to stop.

A Decline in Grades or Participation in School. As drugs become the primary focus of someones life, they often spend more and more time using and obtaining drugs. You may notice that their school work or participation in school starts to decrease. They may stop caring about their grades and choose to neglect the work they need to do to improve academic performance.

A Decline in Work Performance. If they have a job or career, you may also notice declining performance in the professional aspects as drug use becomes the number one priority. They may no longer be able to focus. There may also be no drive to complete work or perform how they once did, especially if work-related stress is what led to substance abuse in the first place.

Missing School or Work with No Legitimate Excuse. In order to get high or to hide their drug abuse, your loved one may miss school or work but have no good excuse as to why. They may have even told you that they were still going to school or work. You may not even notice this until the school calls or until they stop receiving paychecks.

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Signs Of Drug Use In Teens You Need To Know

Drug use among adolescents can result in a variety of social, emotional, and physical changes. Sudden changes in who your teen spends time with, as well as alterations in their personality, personal interests, and physical appearance can all be potential indicators of a substance abuse problem. Read on to find out more about four important signs of drug use in teens.

What Is The Difference Between Mild Addiction And Severe Addiction

The severity of addiction is only partially related to the amount of substance a person uses. The difference between mild and severe addiction is the number of the 11 DSM addiction criteria a person meets. The criteria relate to ability to control use, the negative impact use has on self and life, and the existence of physiological dependence. Substance abuse disorder is considered mild in the presence of two or three criteria. It is considered moderate in the presence of four or five signs. In the presence of six or more symptoms, substance use disorder is considered severe. In fact, sometimes the word addiction is reserved for the most severe cases. Because repeated use of a psychoactive substance often creates the motivation for further use, substance abuse is seen as a self-perpetuating disorder and considered to have a high potential for progression.

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Physical Evidence: Drug Paraphernalia

First things first:

Seeing actual physical evidence of drug-taking constitutes a definite red flag.

Of course, the evidence itself can take many forms.

Scattered remnants of the drugs themselves, glass pipes, rolling papers, bongs, tin foil, and needles are just a few examples of tell-tale drug paraphernalia. Be wary if you notice them in and around your house and/or in the bedrooms of loved ones.

Now, this doesnt always indicate addiction. It is, however, a fairly clear sign of drug-taking. The nature of the paraphernalia indicates the severity of the drug, and, thus, how worried you should be.

For example, on the grand scale of things, smoking an occasional joint is unlikely to lead to a mortally threatening addiction. As such, seeing evidence of small-scale cannabis use is unlikely to be a major cause for concern.

On the other hand, seeing the implements of heroin use should be taken seriously.

Common Signs Of Addiction Include:

Against drug abuse day sign 01 Royalty Free Vector Image
  • Inability to discontinue substance use
  • Withdrawing from friends and family
  • Disregarding risk factors
  • Enduring withdrawal when sober
  • Larger doses needed to feel the drugs effects

The level of intensity for each addiction sign will depend on how long youve used a substance.

Healthy individuals can usually recognize destructive habits and drop them. This is not the case with addicts. Rather than acknowledge the addiction is present, theyll discover ways to warrant and resume the behavior.

The first step in receiving help is to recognize the physical, mental, and emotional signs, like character shifts or changes in weight. If you or a loved one shows any signs of addiction, contact our team at Harmony Ridge for confidential treatment information.

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Frequent Signs And Symptoms

Addiction to prescription medications can manifest in a number of ways depending on the type of drug abused. In general though, if you are concerned that you may be experiencing addiction, some signs may include:

  • Needing to take more to experience same effect over time
  • Using medication to avoid withdrawal symptoms
  • Not being able to stop using despite a desire to stop
  • Prioritizing medication use before other activities and obligations
  • Not doing the activities you used to enjoy
  • Knowingly using medication despite experiencing problems due to its use

Noticing similar signs and symptoms may be an indicator of prescription drug abuse and addiction in others. Some additional signsâranging from behavioral, physical, and socialâto look out for may include:

  • If prescribed, running out of medication sooner than expected
  • Dilated or narrowed pupils

Understanding The Signs Of Addiction

A drug addiction or alcohol use disorder can be difficult to identify without understanding the signs of addiction. Substance use disorders can change the way people look, how they act and how they feel, and the symptoms of drug abuse can be physical, behavioral and psychological in nature.

Not everyone who uses drugs or alcohol has a substance abuse problem. However, about 10% of Americans struggle with substance abuse. Understanding the signs and symptoms of drug addiction is the first step towards getting help.

Fortunately for concerned family members and friends, many characteristics of addiction are easy to identify, and many types of drug addictions share similar signs and symptoms. If someone can recognize the symptoms of addiction, they may be able to help a friend or family member who struggles with this disease.

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What Is Drug Addiction

Drug addiction is a chronic and progressive brain disease, characterised by relapse and compulsive drug taking for which there is no cure

A person suffering from drug addiction will often start out abusing drugs. This then leads to them developing a drug tolerance so they need to take more drugs in order to feel the desired effects.

Once addicted to a drug, a person will be compelled to take drugs despite suffering adverse consequences occupationally, financially, physically, mentally, emotionally and socially.

Usually, someone who suffers from drug addiction will be physically and mentally dependent on a particular drug or a combination of drugs. Going without drugs will cause them to suffer from drug withdrawal symptoms. This can cause many to continue to take drugs rather than ask for help and get clean.

Drug addiction is defined as a brain disease due to the effects of drugs changing and damaging many functional areas of the brain.

Excessive exposure to harmful drugs changes the way the brain communicates and functions. The brain adapts by rewiring its pathways to place drugs as a priority, even above food, shelter, health and loved ones. The rewiring of the brain compels the sufferer to take drugs even when they want to stop

As a progressive disease, without treatment, drug addiction only gets worse and never better on its own.

Drug addiction may seem like a hopeless condition and the truth is that it is unless a sufferer accesses the correct treatment and support.

How Do You Know If Youre Addicted

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You look forward to getting high. You devote increasing amounts of time planning to get drugs or worrying about where your next dose is coming from. You find yourself rummaging through other peoples medicine cabinets in search of drugs.

Your involvement with drugs begins to have negative consequences. It interferes with your functioningyou start missing obligations and events. You make excuses for yourselfto yourself and to others, about why you need the substance, about not showing up, about making mistakes at work, about how tomorrow will be different. You break promises to yourself that you will stop usinga source of self-contempt that has a way of perpetuating addiction by needing relief in the high of substance use. You drift away from longtime friends. You get secretive about your activities. You get defensive or belligerent with loved ones or colleagues who want to know whats going on they notice peculiarities about your behavior or appearance that you are not likely to recognize. You maintain a belief that you can stop any time you wantdespite evidence to the contrary.

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Sex And Gender Differences

The warning signs of substance misuse may vary between men and women. The physical, behavioral and emotional responses can vary dramatically between the two genders. Symptoms of drug use for men might include:

  • Shrinkage in the testes and fertility issues.
  • Severe manifestations of certain addictions, like marijuana use disorder.
  • Increased likelihood of using drugs to enhance positive moods.

On the other side of the coin, symptoms of drug use for women might include:

  • Uncharacteristic body hair growth and male-pattern baldness.
  • Dramatic weight loss with some specific categories of drugs.
  • Higher likelihood of experiencing panic attacks with certain substances.

Substance Abuse And Obsessive

When a patient battles with the manifestations of both medication and liquor misuse and fanatical urgent issue, it tends to be hard for everybody in the family. The Dependent Individual May:

  • Thinking awkward and afraid of danger if unfit to enjoy their Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder practices and get high because of potentially drinking
  • Faces adjusted rest designs, examples of eating, and standards of conduct contingent on their medication of decision

Regular medications of maltreatment among Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder patients incorporate tranquilizers, alcohol, and sedative medications like heroin and painkillers, as numerous patients try to self-cure their nervousness with substances they accept will bring down their feelings of anxiety.

One contextual analysis, distributed by the U.S. Public Library of Medicine, tracked down that 70% of 323 members managing Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder and some substance abuse type had the confusion first the reliance came afterward. Studies recommend upwards of 3 million grown-ups may have OCD at any single time.

When the quiet impacts wear off, the tensions can return to flooding, in some cases more grounded than previously. Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder, combined with substance abuse, school, and home, can meddle with your time at work. It can overwhelm your life, breaking your connections and mind simultaneously.

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Effects Of Prescription Drug Addiction

The effects of prescription drug abuse are far-reaching and depend upon a number of variables. The most common long-term effects of prescription drug abuse include the following:

  • Social isolation
  • Withdrawing from previously enjoyable activities
  • Worsening of physical and mental illnesses
  • Inability to fulfill responsibilities at work or home

Effects of Prescription Painkiller Abuse:

  • Respiratory depression
  • Increased risk for HIV/AIDS and other bloodborne pathogens

Effects of Stimulant Abuse:

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Signs &  Symptoms of Drug Addiction

What does it look like when a coworker is showing signs of drug use? Here are a few of the most common signs of drug use at work:

  • Theres a Change in Their Performance. This is more common with reliable employees who have had their job for long enough to establish a record of performance. When they start abusing drugs, they may start making more mistakes, take longer to complete tasks or exhibit trouble focusing on the task at hand. They may also suddenly seem disinterested in their work or start to neglect their job-related responsibilities.
  • Theyre Frequently Late or Call in Sick. Work absenteeism is also a sign of drug abuse. The effects of drugs and alcohol can be long-lasting, meaning that a user may have to make the choice between coming to work impaired and calling in sick. The former is much easier to detect, while the reason behind missing work or frequently showing up late can be more difficult to pin down.
  • They Seem to Have a Personality Shift. Drug use can bring on dramatic changes in mood and personality, meaning that the person in question will not likely be able to hide it completely. They may suddenly start acting more irritable, paranoid, or erratic, with seemingly no explanation why.
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