How can you tell when your drug use has gotten out of control? The answer to that question for many people is that they can’t. So many drug abusers and drug addicts will continue to use for years. They’ll do this even though the signs that their drug use has gotten out of hand are evident.
This might be a situation you’re in as well. It’s important for you to know when your drug use is no longer in your control. Let’s talk in more detail about what this means.
10 Telltale Signs Your Drug Use is Out of Control
Now that you know more about drug use, you need to know how to spot a problem in your own life. Incidentally, if you notice even one of these, it could indicate drug abuse, or even addiction.
- You’re mainly spending time with people who use drugs.
- Most of your thoughts are centered around using drugs.
- You’re using drugs even when you told yourself that you wouldn’t.
- You’re not able to stop using drugs when you want to.
- Using drugs is having a negative impact on your life.
- Your family is telling you that you have a drug use problem.
- You don’t care about activities and hobbies anymore that you used to love.
- You’re stealing money in order to be able to afford your drugs.
- You’re having health issues that are related to your drug use.
- You’re unable to hold down a steady job because of your drug use.
Drug Abuse Information You Should Know
It’s possible that many of the above facts and telltale signs of drug abuse are things you can identify with. If so, then you probably have quite a few questions you’d like to have answered.
It’s important to know as much about drug use and drug abuse as you can. The more you know, the better. If you need help for a drug abuse problem, you need to know when to reach out for assistance.
The Drug Use Definition
The drug use definition refers to the use of any drug for a psychotropic purpose, rather than a medicinal one. Psychotropic drugs are drugs that cause changes in the brain. People use them to get high, rather than for their intended purposes.
Examples of drug use would be using cannabis, prescription drugs, cocaine, or other psychotropic drugs. Drug use might refer to a single episode of using drugs. It doesn’t necessarily indicate repetitive use or addiction.
What is Drug Abuse?
Drug abuse generally refers to the excessive use of drugs without the presence of an addiction. However, someone with an addiction is also participating in drug abuse.
Usually, when someone is participating in drug abuse, his or her drug use has just started. Drug abuse can refer to:
- The use of any prescription drug without a valid prescription from a doctor
- The use of any illegal drug; even one time
- The use of any legal drug (such as alcohol) in an excessive manner
- The use of a drug for the purpose of getting high
- The excessive use of a drug without a compulsion to use
Drug abuse is what precedes drug addiction. As far as how long it takes from drug abuse to move to drug addiction, this varies. Sometimes with some drugs it can happen almost instantly. Other times, people are able to abuse drugs for years without forming addictions.
What is Drug Addiction?
For the drug addiction definition, Wikipedia states that it is the same as substance or drug dependence. It is a condition that develops from repeatedly using drugs over time. It results in drug withdrawal symptoms when the substances are stopped.
There are a number of drug addiction definition essays online that go into this subject further. Someone who is addicted to drugs feels as though they need them. They may use them in order to feel like themselves each day.
If you have an addiction, you need to know the drug addiction definition. It may help you to understand your present condition.
What is the Drug Dependence Definition?
The drug dependence definition refers to the necessity of using a drug to avoid withdrawal. In many ways, drug dependence is the same as drug addiction.
When someone is drug dependent, that person will experience withdrawal when the drug is stopped. Withdrawal symptoms may be mild, or they may be severe. This often depends on which drug is being used, and for how long.
The presence of drug dependence can be a life-threatening situation. For example, someone who is dependent upon alcohol can experience serious medical complications when quitting.
Drug Abuse Statistics in the United States
Current drug abuse statistics in the United States indicate that we have a serious problem. According to the National Institute on Drug Abuse:
- In 2009, 23.5 million people ages 12 and over needed treatment for a drug problem.
- This works out to be almost 10% of people in this age group.
- Of this number only 2.6 million (or 11.2%) received professional treatment.
- 41.4% of all treatment admissions required alcohol abuse treatment.
- 20% of all treatment admissions were for heroin and other opiates.
- 17% of all treatment admissions were for marijuana.
- 8.1% of these admissions were for crack cocaine addiction.
The fact that there are millions of people needing addiction treatment is eye-opening. Now, so many years later, the problem has gotten even more out of hand.
Drug Addiction Symptoms That Indicate You Have a Problem
The idea that you may have a drug addiction may be shocking to you. You honestly thought you had your drug use under control. To find out that you might not is a bit unsettling.
You need to know for sure if you have a drug addiction. Taking an addiction quiz is a good way to get more information. You can also look for some common drug addiction symptoms in the following list. Do any of these apply to you?
Common drug addiction symptoms include:
- Needing to use more drugs to get the same effects
- Feeling strange once the drug starts to wear off
- Being unable to stop yourself from using, even if you really don’t want to
- Using drugs even though it’s causing bad things to happen in your life
- Thinking about drugs nearly all the time
- Using drugs more often than you mean to
- Surpassing any drug use limits you set for yourself
- Losing interest in your favorite activities
- Becoming isolated from friends and family
- Taking risks when you have used drugs, such as driving a car
If you notice even one of these symptoms, it’s wise to talk with someone who can give you clarity. Many drug rehabs offer free phone assessments for these situations. You can talk to a professional and find out what you should do next.
The Effects of Drug Abuse on the Body
The effects of drug abuse on the body and mind become quite apparent as time goes on. Of course, these are going to be a bit different, depending on what drug you’re using. Still, you should expect to experience at least some of the following:
- Problems with your teeth
- Heart issues
- Blood pressure increases or decreases
- Constipation or diarrhea
- Chronic headaches
- Symptoms of anxiety
- Symptoms of depression
- Hallucinations or delusions
- Paranoia or psychosis
- Kidney or liver problems
- Stomach pain or aches
- Nausea and/or vomiting
These effects of drug abuse should not be ignored. They are your body trying to tell you that you need to stop using.