How Do You Define A Drug Addict?
A drug addict is a person dealing with a drug addiction who depends upon a legal or illegal drugs to get through the difficult parts of life.
When a person gets addicted to narcotics, they can not control their use of narcotics and will continue to abuse them despite the evidence of harm that their addiction causes in their life. Substance abuse can cause an intense craving for legal or illegal drugs. While the drug addict may want to stop using, they may find that they can’t do so on their own.
An addiction to drugs can have grave consequences, including issues with their physical and mental health, the law, relationships, and employment. A person who has addiction issues may need to get help from their physician, loved ones, support groups, or a treatment program whose purpose is to help people deal with their addiction problems.
Symptoms Of Drug Abuse
Some people start abusing drugs in an experimental phase during social situations in their youth. Then some people will start abusing drugs at a more frequent rate. The addiction risk and the rate at which people become dependent often depends on the drug. Certain drugs have a higher risk of dependency and addiction than others.
As time goes on, people who abuse drugs may need higher amounts of the substance to get intoxicated. Time may come when the person needs the drug just to function. As the person uses the drug more and more, they may find that it’s hard to get along without active use of the illegal substance. If they attempt to stop abusing the drug, they can get cravings and even become physically ill.
Some of the symptoms that many people who abuse drugs experience include the following:
- Experiencing urges for the drug
- Needing to use the drug on a regular basis
- Having a supply of the drug in the home so that the person doesn’t run out of the supply
- Needing to use more and more of the drug to get the same level of intoxication
- Spending money they don’t have to get the drug
- Flaking on friends, family, and work responsibilities to use more of the drug
- Performing illegal activities such as stealing to obtain the drug
- Driving under the influence of the drug of choice
- Spending most of their time trying to get more of the illegal substance
- Trying to cease use of the drug but not succeeding in the attempts
- Dealing with withdrawal symptoms when the person stops using the drug
How To Recognize Drug Abuse In Other People
Some of the signs that your loved one could have a dependence on a legal or illegal drug include some of the following symptoms:
- Issues at work or school such as missing assignments, skipping whole work or school days, or a decline in overall performance
- Lack of interest in grooming, clothing, and overall appearance
- Problems with physical health
- Drastic changes in behavior such as becoming secretive about social relationships and experiencing wild mood swings
- The person spends inordinate amounts of money on mysterious items. You could also have missing items or money which could tell you that your loved one is stealing to support a drug habit.
When A Person With Drug Abuse Issues Should See A Doctor
If a person finds that their drug use has gotten out of control, they should get help immediately. The quicker they get help, the sooner they can get on the path to sobriety. If you have a loved one who abuses drugs, get them to a doctor who specializes in addiction or a drug addiction therapist.
A person addicted to drugs should immediately see a physician if the following occurs:
- They have engaged in unsafe behavior such as unprotected sex and sharing needles
- They have tried to stop using the drug, but find that the cravings are too strong
- The person experiences withdrawal symptoms when they do stop using the drug
If a person doesn’t feel ready to approach their doctor, they can call drug abuse helplines that operate locally and nationally. These chat lines can give them resources needed to help them take the first steps to get sober.
How To Stage An Intervention
An intervention gives someone with a drug problem a chance to make some much-needed changes before their addiction gets even worse. Interventions can also become the reason that the person gets the help they need.
Make sure that any intervention that gets done is carefully planned. Interventions should be led by an intervention professional, an addiction physician or a licensed alcohol and drug counselor. The average intervention involves the family and friends of a person who abuses drugs, along with close co-workers, clergy, and other people who care about the subject of the intervention.
During the course of the intervention, all of these people will come together for the purpose of having a direct but loving conversation with the subject about how their addiction hurts the people in their life. At this time, the drug addict will be asked to go to an addiction treatment center to deal with their drug abuse.
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