Addiction often begins as the casual use of a substance, but it can quickly escalate into a serious problem. It isn't uncommon for an addict and his or her loved ones to be in denial about the issue, but eventually, the signs become too hard to ignore. Letting yourself see the signs of addiction is essential for helping an addict break free from their cycle of abuse.
Casual use of a substance becomes an addiction when you feel compelled to use the substance daily or more than once a day. It's also not uncommon for people to resist the substance during the work week but use it heavily on the weekends. While not as overt, indulging this way is still a form of addiction. Repeated, failed attempts to stop using are key signs to take note of.
When using a substance is your primary means of coping with emotional pain, there is a real risk that you are an addict. You may neglect hobbies you once loved or ignore relationships. Addiction can also drive you to be cruel to loved ones when you're under the influence or dealing with cravings. Teenagers may become obsessed with keeping their parents away from their bedrooms or have drastic behavioral changes.
Many addicts don't notice their growing fixation. They spend increasing time and energy focused on having the drug around, spend more money than they can afford on it and even resort to stealing from family, friends or their workplaces to buy more. Abuse of medication can also result in hording behavior, keeping a constant supply of the drug even if it means skipping doses here and there.
There are many warning signs, but the most important is your gut feeling. Never ignore your feelings and worries. Recovery from addiction is possible with support, but first, the addiction has to be recognized and admitted. If you or a loved one are exhibiting symptoms of addiction, seek help now. Call today at (203) 388-1730.