A substance use disorder (SUD), the technical name for addiction, is a reoccurring use of drugs and/or alcohol, which leads to significant and clinical impairment. Basically, it means you can’t stop using a substance and your life has become unmanageable because of it. Determining the potential signs of such a disorder is not necessarily a diagnosis. Important to know is that only a licensed medical physician or therapist can provide an accurate diagnosis. However, it is possible to spot signs of addiction to help you answer the question: Am I Addicted?.
If you’re battling what you may believe is an addiction to drugs, be it illicit, prescriptions, or even to alcohol, you are not alone. At San Diego Sober Living, we know addiction and we know how to recovery. We have been there. Done that. Let’s dig in deeper to determine if you are addicted.
What Is Substance Use Disorder
A substance use disorder (SUD), also known as addiction, is a reoccurring use of drugs and/or alcohol, which leads to significant and clinical impairment with an inability to stop. Determining the potential signs of such a disorder is not necessarily a diagnosis. Only a licensed medical physician or therapist can provide an accurate diagnosis. However, before even going to the doctor, it’s helpful to provide them with all of the information they need. Additionally, there are times when mental illness can occur with an SUD. Once again, these can only be diagnosed by an appropriate licensed physician or therapist, but it’s good to be aware of any potential co-occurring disorders.
Signs of Substance Use Disorder
According to MentalHealth.gov, substance misuse has some clear signs:
- Financial problems/unexplained need for money.
- Changes in hobbies, friends, or places to hangout.
- Using substances despite the issues it causes within friendships/relationships.
- Legal issues related to substance misuse.
- Lack of motivation.
- Mood swings/irritability.
- Getting into trouble often.
- Changes in sleep patterns/appetite.
- Participating in suspicious behaviors.
- Paranoid, fearful, or anxious for no reason.
- Timeframes of giddiness, hyperactivity, and agitation.
- Strange smells on clothing, breath, or body.
- Bloodshot eyes.
- Rapid weight gain or weight loss.
- Slurred speech, impairment, or tremors.
- Decline in physical appearance.
Although many of these changes may appear to be clear as to whether or not someone is battling with an SUD, it may not always be clear if they are also facing a mental illness as well. It’s best to consult a licensed physician or therapist to receive an accurate diagnosis. And knowing that an SUD is what’s at hand, you and/or your loved one can make an informed decision about the best treatment options to consider.
If you or a loved one is struggling with a substance use disorder, San Diego Sober Living is here to help. There are resources available to help you to achieve long-term sobriety and to live a healthy and productive life one step at a time and one day at a time.