Knowing when it’s time for drug rehab can be tricky. After all, there isn’t an exact date or time marked on a calendar that tells us when our substance use has become a problem. For many people, the decision to seek treatment is complex and difficult. This is one reason that more than 20 million Americans have an addiction to at least one substance, but only about 10% of people with substance abuse problems actually receive treatment. A big part of that comes from the fact that most people don’t know when drug rehab is actually necessary.
Here at Genesis Recovery, our top priority is to help rebuild lives broken by addiction. One of the best ways to do that is to help family members and friends recognize the key signs that your loved one needs to enroll in an addiction treatment center.
Spotting The Signs It’s Time to Start Rehab
Here are 5 major categories of behavior to help you determine if it’s the right time to seek treatment and start rehab:
#1. Lying, Deceit, and Secrets
One of the first signs you’ll notice when it’s time for your loved one to get professional help is that they don’t tell the truth—a lot. Addiction thrives in secrecy. For example, if you catch them using drugs, they may start to make up excuses. Perhaps they’ll say that the drugs aren’t theirs or that they found it and were going to throw them away. Eventually, the lies turn into a lifestyle based on avoiding the truth. You may notice their behavior change and many aspects of their life will become secrets. While this behavior can be hard to watch, it’s a sure sign that they need help. This is also the ideal time for you to work with an addiction treatment center you trust to plan a professional intervention.
#2. Drugs Become a Form of Self-Medication
Self-medication is another sign that your loved one should seek addiction treatment. When self-medication begins, you may start to see your loved one exhibit certain behavior patterns. For example, when they’re upset, angry, sad, depressed, frustrated, or even moody, they may turn to drugs, using addictive substances as a way to feel better. While you might not see them use drugs directly, they might disappear for a while after an emotional outburst or during times of stress. When they return, you may notice that they’re under the influence.
Most times, self-medication is an indication of related issues like depression, anxiety, PTSD, or even ADHD. Your loved one might use drugs to self-medicate for other reasons, too, which can include:
- Getting bullied
- Wanting to fit in
- Feeling bored
- Trying to escape a painful reality
- Wanting to experiment, have an adventure, or “try something new”
Regardless of their reason, this is a sign that they need professional help. Here at Genesis Recovery, our dual diagnosis program helps treat substance abuse and the underlying mental health issues that trigger addiction.
#3. A Desire to Quit but Being Unable To
If your loved one has tried and failed to stop using drugs, it may be time to get professional help. When the brain becomes adapted to drugs, it can develop a chemical dependency. When this happens, brain functioning becomes dependent on drugs in order to function normally. So when your loved one suddenly stops using drugs, the brain has difficulty coping with this new reality, sending chemical messages that something is wrong.
Neurotransmitter chemicals like dopamine, endorphins, and serotonin levels can drop drastically. When the level of these chemicals gets really low, individuals may experience depression, anxiety, paranoia, fatigue, and even hallucinations. These and other withdrawal symptoms make your loved one crave drugs even more. If and when they give in to these cravings, they’ll need to use even more drugs to feel “normal” again. This further drives the cycle of addiction. In time, individuals may be unable to stop using until they receive professional and clinical help. If you know your loved one wants to stop using drugs but can’t, reach out to a member of our staff today.
#4. Job Loss and Expulsion from School
While this red flag might seem obvious, missing work or school can be easily overlooked if your loved one makes up excuses for their behavior. Since addiction is compulsive, however, occasional absences from work or school will often eventually turn into missing these commitments entirely. Losing a job or being kicked out of school is a sign that your loved one has lost control. Feeding their addiction, rather than moving forward with their education or career, has become their primary driver. When you notice this issue, it’s time to search for a drug rehabilitation program.
#5. Other Signs of Drug Addiction
You’ll also know it’s time for drug rehab when you notice your loved one display other signs of addiction, including:
- Compulsively thinking about drugs
- Needing drugs to have a good time
- Using one drug to recover from the effects of another drug
- Being afraid of running out of drugs
- Stealing things to pay for drugs
- Getting arrested or hospitalized after using drugs
- Losing relationships with other people because of their drug use
A Leap of Faith That’ll Change Your Life
Addiction is a problem that people tend to hide. But ignoring addictive behaviors doesn’t make them go away. Substance use can continue to control your life until you must seek professional help. Even the highest functioning people in active addiction must reach a breaking point. While many try to stop on their own, without treatment they risk losing jobs, reputations, money, and connections with family and friends.
But here at Genesis Recovery, we believe in taking a leap of faith. Addiction doesn’t have to continue to control your life. Rehabilitation works. Don’t suffer in silence, trying to manage addiction on your own. Step out of your comfort zone and call us today at 619-797-7319 if you or a loved one need to get on the road to recovery.