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How to Tell if Your Loved One Is Suffering From Addiction

No one knows your loved one better than you do. So, if your gut is telling you that something is wrong, something is probably wrong. The hard part is figuring out what is wrong without alienating your loved one. The first step is research. Start really paying attention to your loved one’s behavior and start collecting data. Note the changes you are seeing as factually as you can. There will come the point when you will want to discuss the changes you are seeing, but you have to gather your data first. 

Next, you’ll want to have a plan for how to approach them with what you’re seeing. You’ll also want to know how they can get help to get on the road to sobriety. At Aspire Treatment, we understand how devastating it can be to realize that your loved one is facing addiction. We are here to help you understand what you and your family are dealing with. We offer a wide range of treatment modalities and programs that can help free your loved one from the grip of addiction. 

What Is Addiction?

The American Association of Addiction Medicine defines addiction as a “treatable, chronic medical disease involving interactions among brain circuits, genetics, the environment, and an individual’s life experiences.” Those suffering from addiction will compulsively use substances and continue using regardless of the consequences. Addiction is a disease of isolation because every decision centers around getting and using more drugs or alcohol. Those struggling with addiction often don’t realize that they have lost their friends and family until they are alone. Addiction can have social, legal, relationship, family, occupational, and health consequences. And while it will make no sense as you watch your loved one slowly lose each part of their life in the name of using drugs, those suffering from addiction have difficulty seeing the reality of the losses they are experiencing. 

How to Tell if Your Loved One Is Suffering From Addiction

Signs that someone is using drugs come in many forms. You may note physical changes, including the individual losing weight, appearing to be sick, or being tired more often. Depending on which drug is being abused and how it is being used, you may see injection sites, bruising, cuts, and more. 

Behavioral changes are perhaps the most significant when trying to identify addiction. Those suffering from addiction often exhibit drastic mood swings, irritability, anger, and a lack of patience. One of the saddest and most challenging aspects of drug and alcohol addiction is the psychological effects. It is often nearly impossible to tell if a person began using drugs and alcohol to self-medicate mental health disorders like anxiety, depression, or mood disorders or if the disorders resulted from the drug addiction. Either way, you know your loved one well enough to know that something has changed. 

As you review what has changed with your loved one, remember to stick to the facts. For example, maybe your partner has started staying out late every night or has begun to have problems at work. Perhaps your usually even tempered friend has become so volatile you’re afraid to even speak to them. Whatever the changes are, assemble your data and get ready to talk. While they might not be prepared to face up to their addiction, your conversation may be the beginning of their move away from addiction. 

Getting Help for Addiction Today

In Atlanta, Aspire Treatment has various programs to help your loved one stop suffering from addiction and create a new life in recovery. We employ a wide range of treatment modalities and programs to assist your loved one in developing tools that will support them over the long term. 

We partner with our clients to create comprehensive, individualized treatment plans that build a firm foundation for sobriety. Each person’s recovery journey is unique, and we have programs ranging from partial hospitalization to outpatient counseling that enable us to help your loved one craft a recovery path that works for them. Connect with us today to see how we can best support your loved one’s success in recovery.