Nearly 20 million Americans aged 12 and older have battled with at least one form of substance abuse. Addictions can ruin lives and cause irreparable damage to the victim’s financial, mental, and physical health. If you’ve ever asked if you’re struggling with addiction, it’s a good sign that you should discuss your concerns with a specialist at the drug detox center in Florida.
Am I Struggling with Addiction?
Addiction is defined as a chronic and compulsive need for a substance, behavior, or activity. This can be a physiological or psychological drive. This habit-forming indulgence causes physical, psychological, or social harm with well-defined symptoms when going without the habit. Withdrawal symptoms may include anxiety and irritability, tremors, or nausea and vomiting.
You can be addicted to almost anything. Most people think of people who develop a dependence on alcohol or drugs and can’t stop using those substances. We see examples in pop culture all the time, ranging from “Breaking Bad” to “Requiem for a Dream.”
However, you can just as easily be addicted to gambling, internet, phones, sex, television, video games, eating, shopping, and even plastic surgery.
If you’ve found yourself fitting into this definition, call 866.341.0638 for help.
Habitually using something isn’t necessarily the same as addiction. Some signs of addiction include, but aren’t limited to:
- Non-stop usage: If you are wondering if you are struggling with addiction, you should see how long you can go without it. Try a few days and then a week. Do you find yourself continually craving for your fix?
- Increasing tolerance: This symptom mostly applies to drugs and alcohol as your brain gets used to whichever substance you’re continually taking. For example, someone who abuses opiates will feel their most significant high the first time taking it. If the user takes the same amount of drugs a second time, it won’t be as high as the first time. The effect slowly diminishes, so the user must take more pills to compensate.
- Withdrawal symptoms: The physical and psychological effects of withdrawal vary based on substances. For example, alcohol withdrawal symptoms include insomnia, anxiety, fear, vomiting, nausea, headaches, and sweaty, or shaking hands.
- Self-destructive activities: Those with addiction disorders will do anything to get their hands on their drugs. This is part of the reason drug abuse ruins lives. They’ll spend all their savings trying to obtain more of their substance even if they go broke. They’ll sacrifice their job, relationships, and health just to satisfy their craving.
- Physical symptoms: Addiction can ruin your body in many ways. The ailments depend on the drug, but some common signs include bloodshot eyes, bloody nose, constipation, diarrhea, sweats, seizures, trembling, gained or lost weight.
Addiction vs. Non-Addiction
To be clear, there’s a fine line between addiction, obsession, and habitual use. For example, you might be obsessed with playing a video game or watching a new television show. You might eagerly wait until the end of your workday before you rush home and engage in your favorite hobby.
You might say lightly that you’re addicted to a television show because you stayed up all night watching it. However, stop and ask yourself, how often does this happen, and am I struggling with addiction or obsession?
You’re likely struggling with the latter, not the former. Ask yourself these questions:
- Can you control your consumption?
- Are you engaging in self-destructive behaviors to satisfy your craving?
- Will you still be engaged once the activity is over? (For example, your “addiction” to a television show might end once you watch the last episode.)
- How do you feel if you don’t engage in your drug, activity, or behavior for a week?
Your brain forms habits by creating a “loop” based on a reward system. Something triggers your mind to go into autopilot mode and perform an action. Most people have habits such as brushing their teeth, eating breakfast, or buckling their seatbelt.
The main reason addiction differs from obsessions and habits is due to chemical, emotional, and psychological dependence. Your brain tells you it needs the substance the same way you’d need air or water. Drugs and alcohol especially will cause a chemical imbalance that drives addiction.
Additionally, addictions are something out of your control and very difficult to overcome. You can prevent yourself from watching television or brushing your teeth. Someone with addiction can’t stop themselves from abusing drugs on their own even if they want to.
If you’re struggling to stop drug and alcohol use, reach out to the medical detox center to mitigate withdrawal symptoms.
How Can I Fight Addiction?
If you’ve discovered you do have the signs of addiction, you are not alone. Addiction affects millions of people across the world. But you don’t have to suffer forever. We at Summit Detox are here to help. Contact us at 866.341.0638 to get the help you need today.