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Substance Abuse: What are the signs?

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What is Substance Abuse Disorder?

Alcohol abuse or substance abuse disorder is a chronic and devastating mental health condition, where the behavioral patterns are not in the individual’s control. The psychological, social, genetic, and environmental factors play a significant role in developing this condition.

A substance abuse disorder is where the individual engages in excessive consumption of drugs or a harmful substance. It affects several aspects of their life, and they fail to function rationally in personal and professional spheres.

In this blog, we will go through the various symptoms and causes of substance abuse disorder and the treatment options that will help you overcome it.  

Symptoms of Drug/Substance Abuse Disorder

The leading symptoms of this disorder include:

  • Severe decline in performance
  • Extreme and frequent mood swings
  • Aggressive and hostile behavior
  • Sleep disturbances
  • Unexplained changes in appetite
  • Anxiety and depression
  • Engaging in illegal activities
  • Lack of motivation
  • Leading to abusive relationships
  • Being secretive or lying

Substances that are Abused Commonly

The substances/drugs commonly abused are:

  • Alcohol
  • Marijuana
  • Narcotics
  • LSD
  • Cocaine
  • Amphetamines
  • Sedatives
  • Meth

Causes of Drug Abuse/Substance Use Disorder

The real causes of substance abuse disorders are not clear, but there are several factors that play a significant role. Genetics are believed to account for nearly 60% of a person developing the habit. What starts as a curiosity often ends up as abuse after repeated drug or substance use to feel good. There can be co-occurring mental problems in individuals who resort to substance abuse; these include depression, bipolar disorder, extreme anxiety, and others.

The risk factors that lead to different types of substance abuse disorders include:

  • A family history of addiction
  • Sleep problems
  • Chronic pain
  • Financial difficulties
  • Divorce or the loss of a loved one
  • Long-term tobacco habit
  • Tense home environment
  • Lack of parental attachment in childhood
  • Relationship issues

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How to Overcome Addiction?

While it’s an extremely difficult task to stop dependence on drugs or alcohol, there are several ways to overcome drug addiction. The treatment depends on the severity of the condition and the substance used. The common ways to overcome addiction include:

Psychotherapy: It includes balanced meetings with a professional guide who offers progressive help and oversees the intensity of drug reliance.

Self-help groups: Here, patients have close connections with other comparable patients who are experiencing compulsion issues. They share each other’s story and frequently go about as an inspiration when recovering from their addiction.

Help with medications: There are prescription medicines accessible to control desires for substances, which also includes standard checking and directing.

Cadabam’s Hospitals gives treatment to illicit drug use, which includes a blend of conduct and intellectual methodology in giving a compelling recuperation from habit which regularly includes care at every individual level.

Treatment for Drug Addiction/Substance Use Disorder

The leading and the most effective treatment options for drug addiction include:

  • Cognitive behavioral therapy
  • Motivational enhancement therapy
  • Contingency management
  • The 12-step program
  • Medications
  • Long term residential programs
  • Out-patient programs
  • In-patient program

Why Cadabam’s?

With over two decades of psychiatric excellence, extensive research capabilities, contemporary setting, and international-grade treatment procedures, Cadabam’s is the pioneer in offering comprehensive mental health services in the country. The center offers specialized programs and holistic healing techniques that enable the individual to see and experience the brighter aspects of life beyond addiction or substance abuse.

A thorough medication process, ongoing counseling sessions, biochemical restoration process, personalized nutrition programs, and recreational activities come together to address and eliminate diverse health conditions from the roots. A host of aftercare services and one-on-one counseling sessions are also offered to track individual progress.

The multidisciplinary team and empathetic staff members create a cohesive environment with a home away from home feeling to help individuals relax, rewind, and rejuvenate to spring back to life with enthusiasm.

Disclaimer: We strive to treat our patients with dignity and utmost sensitivity. We understand that substance abuse disorder is a disease, and that it is not a sign of weakness. Terms like drug addict, drug abuser or drug addiction are used not in a derogatory way, but to remain relevant to user search trends and common usage.

It is important to note that substance abuse should be referred to as ‘substance use disorder’ to better address the effects of this psychological condition. Words like addict, junkie, etc should be avoided. In case you or your loved ones are struggling with substance abuse disorder and share a unique viewpoint on how we can improve this content for our readers, please reach out to us at

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Substance Abuse FAQs: Your Questions Answered

Can substance abuse lead to psychosis?

When substances like PCP or cocaine are abused, then they can trigger psychosis symptoms that can last for many weeks. Long lasting psychosis can also occur due to underlying mental health issues like bipolar or schizophrenic disorders.

What is the difference between substance misuse and substance abuse?

Drug abuse usually happens after drug misuse, even though the two are completely separate units. Signs of drug misuse include taking too much of the substance, taking it for other reasons than the ones prescribed, or accepting the medicine from a friend. Signs of drug abuse include taking it to feel “high”, developing a tolerance to the substance, taking it even though it doesn’t treat any ailments, and not thinking about the severe consequences that come with abusing the drug.  

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