Opioid Abuse: 7 Signs Your Loved One Has An Addiction
1 out of every 3 people in the United States know someone who is addicted to opioids. Do you?
Determining whether or not somebody you love is struggling with addiction can be a difficult experience. Not only is it hard to bring yourself to believe addiction has grabbed hold of someone you know but the fear of confronting a family member or friend is more than what most people can bear.
The truth is, though, that almost 100,000 people die from overdoses every year. Opioids make up the vast majority of those overdose deaths.
Bottom line – your ability to identify and confront the people you love about opioid use could mean life or death. Below, our team shows you how to detect opioid abuse effectively so you can get the people you love the help they need.
1. Severe Mood Swings
Opioid abuse takes drug users on a wild ride of emotions. After getting a fix they find themselves in euphoric, impossibly happy states.
This can manifest in the way of hyperactivity or a deep state of “chill”. Alternatively, when opioid highs fade and “need” comes back, drug users may find themselves irritable and sometimes aggressive.
If you’re noticing a friend or family member exhibiting uncharacteristic mood swings for extended periods of time, the push and pool of opioid abuse could be to blame.
Our recommendation is to ask about the behavior swings you’re noticing without mentioning drugs to see if there is another issue. If your loved one can’t offer a good reason and seems overly defensive, you may need to probe deeper.
2. Abandoning of Responsibilities and Interests
The need that addiction creates in those suffering from it is all consuming. Things like interests and responsibilities slowly fade into the background and drug use becomes a sole focus.
If you’re noticing the person you suspect of drug use no longer wants to partake in hobbies or enjoys time with your group of friends or family members, addiction may be to blame. Also, missing school, work, neglecting living spaces, or personal hygiene routines can be tell-tale signs of drug abuse.
3. Unexplained Financial Need
While the isolated use of opioids is affordable, the constant need for it and consequently, the volume that people suffering from addiction have to get can lead to financial ruin. That’s why a deteriorating financial situation is one of the most common signs you’ll notice with people addicted to opioids.
Does somebody you love work but seemingly never has money for anything? Do they frequently ask to borrow money but won’t offer solid reasons about why they need it?
If so, stop lending as you may be enabling addiction. As soon as it’s appropriate to do so, have a loving conversation with the person in question to help get to the core of their financial issues and to uncover if addiction is to blame.
4. Frequents Fits of Nausea
If people can’t feed their opioid addiction, withdrawal symptoms may start to manifest. While the withdrawal process can be different depending on the substance users are coming down from and each person’s unique physiology, opioid addiction withdraws are commonly marked by vomiting, flu-like symptoms, and constipation.
If you notice somebody you love struggling with those kinds of symptoms frequently, addiction or any other number of serious medical conditions could be to blame. It’s important that you help the person suffering from these symptoms get medical attention so necessary treatment can be administered.
Depression affects tens of millions of people in the United States every year. Many of those affected don’t struggle with addiction but those who do are at a higher risk of experiencing it.
Imagine if every waking moment of your life was being monopolized by your need to partake in a destructive activity. Imagine if despite you knowing how unhealthy your activities were, you were completely powerless to stop. How would that make you feel?
Helpless? Worthless? Weak?
Those feelings often work together to put people with opioid addiction in severely depressed states. Keep an eye out for uncharacteristic depressive episodes in your loved one. If you’re finding they’re happening frequently, work to find out if drug use is at the behavior’s root.
6. Marks Near Veins
There are a many ways abusers consume opioids. One of the most effective is via intravenous use. Intravenous drug use is when drug users inject opioids directly into their bloodstream.
Drug consumption via this method is easy to detect because it leaves scars near veins. If you notice scars on your loved one’s arms or if they’re making a concerted effort to cover their veins, there’s a high chance they’re abusing drugs.
7. Anxiety and Psychosis
The effect opioid use has on the brain can cause irreparable damage which can eventually lead to severe anxiety, paranoia, and psychosis.
If your loved one has no history of mental illness but is suddenly hearing things or is having other inexplicable fits of mania, help them get the medical attention they need as soon as possible. The sooner you can get to the root of what’s causing the deterioration of their cognitive abilities, the better chance you have of preventing injury.
Wrapping Up Signs Your Loved One Is Struggling With Opioid Abuse
From lack of interest to psychosis, there are many signs that can tip an opioid abuser’s hand. If you recognize any of the opioid abuse signs we’ve mentioned above, intervene as quickly as possible to get them the help they need.
If you’re looking for a premier recovery center that specializes in helping opioid sufferers take their lives back, consider letting our team at Help Care Treatment Services help. Learn more about our drug rehab services and start helping your loved one move towards the life they’re meant to live today.