The Warning Signs of Substance Use Disorder

Posted by Soberman's Contributor on April 29, 2020 at 7:17 PM

Substance use disorder is a crippling disorder that can affect anyone regardless of their age, gender, or status in life. However, it tends to be more common in people who have the means to afford these substances. Having access to substances and being able to have the means to use them at will is why professionals many times are higher risk for substance use problems. These professionals include pilots, artists, entrepreneurs, and doctors with high paying salaries. The best way to start treatment for these individuals is to help them identify that they have a problem.

Ways to Recognize The Warning Signs of Substance Use Disorder

Recognizing the warning signs of substance use disorder can be difficult initially. This is especially true for professionals who are high functioning addicts as they can still function normally despite the disorder. These symptoms range from physical changes to psychological and behavioral changes.

Physical Changes

The physical changes caused by substance use disorder are numerous and are the easiest warning signs to spot. It affects a person’s physical appearance, and its effects become more visible as they continue to take in more drugs or alcohol. 

Weight Changes

Shifting weight is one of the more obvious physical signs of substance use disorder. Their diet begins to change due to the use of drugs or alcohol, as these substances directly affect the processes in a person’s body. The problems that can affect weight include liver damage and personal neglect. The changes in their diet are not the only things that cause a person to lose or gain weight. A person’s metabolism is also directly affected by these substances. 

Ocular Changes

Ocular changes in a person may be a sign of drug or alcohol misuse. The eyes become dilated or bloodshot throughout a person’s time, misusing certain substances. This is due to these substances anesthetizing or agitating the nerves in the eye, more specifically the cornea. This can also cause a gradual loss of eyesight if the person isn’t treated quickly.

Sleeping Problems

Another sign that a person may be suffering from substance use disorder is various sleeping problems like insomnia or hypersomnia. These problems are caused by the effect of certain substances on the chemical balance of the body

Psychological and Behavioral Changes

Not all symptoms become visible at the surface level. Some of these symptoms manifest through a person’s personality and behavior. These symptoms can negatively affect both their personal and professional life. 

Shifting Habits and Priorities

Habits and priorities are severely impacted by the presence of drug or alcohol addiction. A person with an addiction to these substances changes their habits and priorities to cater to their addiction. This can cause them to neglect responsibilities and social interaction with family and friends. 

Volatility and Impaired Judgement

Volatility and impaired judgment are dangerous symptoms of substance misuse. This causes a person to be unstable and hard to approach. This also makes it more difficult for a person to seek professional help voluntarily. Impaired judgment also means that a person makes decisions that could lead to severe consequences like fines, incarceration, and even death. 

Secondary Depression 

Secondary depression is a common occurrence in people with substance misuse problems. This is especially true for young men with a history of alcoholism. The comorbidity of substance misuse and depression in young professionals is a problem as these two disorders sustain each other. 

The Next Step to Treating Substance Use Disorder

The first step to proper treatment is recognizing that a problem exists. Once it has been established that a person has a problem with drugs or alcohol, the next step is to seek professional assistance. Premier rehabilitation centers like Soberman’s Estate provide excellent clinical treatment catered to a person’s needs with qualified professionals ready to assist in their recovery. With 5 beds on 5 acres of pristine Sonoran desert, Soberman’s Estate is a safe place to recover. If you or someone you know would benefit from residential treatment, please contact us today for a discreet consultation.


Topics: Addiction, Substance Abuse, Alcoholism

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