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Signs of Addiction

Signs of Addiction 

Addiction to alcohol and other drugs is often a chronic problem. People who have a substance use disorder engage in compulsive behaviors and gradually lose control of their lives.

They continue to drink or use drugs, even when they know it will lead to negative consequences. Addiction happens slowly and over time, and most people are unaware that they are becoming addicted and becoming unable to recognize the depth of their troubles.

Many deny, rationalize, and minimize their addiction, defending themselves against the reality of their situation. Because of these defenses, many people addicted to alcohol and drugs will not seek treatment on their own. To intervene or help someone who struggles, it helps to be familiar with the signs and symptoms of addiction.

Someone with addictive signs and traits does not mean they are necessarily using or abusing alcohol or drugs. Many of these symptoms are common to a variety of problems, such as depression, anxiety, or recovering from traumatic experiences. Whatever the cause, these signs may still warrant special attention. 

Behavioral Signs of Addiction  

Identifying signs of substance use addiction early is crucial for offering help. If someone has been struggling for a long time, receiving assistance is never too late. Behavioral signs often include drastic personality shifts, from excited and engaged to deep-seated sadness, signaling emotional inconsistencies.

For example, someone who is usually calm might become irritable or prone to anger without a plausible reason. A newfound obsession with activities or social events where substance use is prevalent could be another warning sign. At home, this might manifest as withdrawing from family life, skipping meals, or having family gatherings without explanation. 

Those struggling may exhibit secretive behavior. They are hiding phone conversations or being vague about their whereabouts. They are combined with a noticeable drop in productivity at work or school.

Changing friend groups without sharing details, unusual lack of motivation, and discipline are other common behavioral signs of addiction. Recognizing patterns can help someone toward recovery.

Physical Signs of Addiction 

You can also recognize addiction through physical signs. A change in appearance, such as sudden weight loss or the inability to fall or stay asleep, are common signs of addiction. Physical traits and signs can often reveal the presence of addiction.

Poor coordination might be among the first noticeable indicators pointing toward a struggle with substance use. Changes in appetite, consistent fatigue, or appearing run-down can also be signs.

Symptoms such as nausea, sweating, sweaty palms, or a shaky demeanor highlight the body’s adverse reaction to substances. Becoming more prone to common colds might indicate inhalant use or other forms of substance abuse.

A visibly puffy face, unusual blushing, or changes in speech patterns, whether slurred or unusually paced, are telling signs. The persistent smell of alcohol in breath or clothes directly points to an addiction that requires attention and care. Recognizing these physical signs is crucial for initiating timely support and intervention. 

How to Approach Someone with an Addiction 

When addressing someone who may be struggling with an addiction, approach the conversation with care and love. It is vital not to be hostile or aggressive. By approaching the situation from a place of caring and kindness, the addict will likely be more inclined to listen rather than shutting down the conversation immediately.

When approaching the conversation, have examples ready to share—allowing the person with an addiction to see the complete picture of their condition, especially if they do not agree. Therapy and rehabilitation centers can be life-changing for an individual struggling with addiction.  


Recognizing signs of addiction to substances like alcohol and drugs is vital on the road to recovery. It’s crucial to approach people with kindness and understanding, acknowledging that overcoming addiction is demanding and requires lots of support. If you think someone might be dealing with addiction, remember that helping them early can make a big difference. It is essential to know that it’s never too late to start the recovery process. Addiction won’t go away by itself; it requires hard work and effort to be overcome. If you or someone you know is struggling, call us today, and let us begin this journey together.

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