Substance Abuse Problems

March 23rd, 2011

The good news for people with substance abuse problems is that they can be solved.  Independent research by the European Association for the Treatment of Addiction (EATA) has proven conclusively that treatment is effective in treating this medical disorder.  So even though substance abuse problems are severe there is hope!
Substance abuse problems manifest in all areas of life.  Alcohol and drugs create serious health problems, affect mental health, cause problems at work or school, impact on relationships, cause financial havoc, the list goes on.
These problems are actually a way to decide if a person is simply using a substance or abusing it.  If using drugs or drinking alcohol creates problems then the person might be considered for a diagnosis of substance abuse disorder.
The first physical signs of substance abuse problems typically include symptoms such as weight loss, insomnia, sores on the skin, hygiene problems, tooth decay, and a loss of energy.  Of course the symptoms will vary depending on what substance is being abused.  Less obvious issues such as heart, liver, and other organ damage may take longer to manifest and be noticed.
Physical substance abuse problems may need special treatment by medical staff.  The obvious place to start is to provide a safe detoxification from whatever substance is being abused.  Not only is it safer to detox under medical supervision but more comfortable as well.
Because substances have mind altering properties, abuse can create psychological problems.  Persistent use of hallucinogenic drugs (such as marijuana) has been a subject of research for its possible link to schizophrenia.  Other problems such as depression can be caused or worsened through alcohol or drug abuse.
Once a person has been detoxified from the mind-altering effects of substances they will be able to benefit from psychotherapy aimed at helping abusers regain their sense of reality.  This may be done in conjunction with the prescription of psychiatric medication to help rebalance neurochemicals.
Problems at work can be created through increased absenteeism or poor performance.  These substance abuse problems can have a knock-on effect on financial stability which is probably already threatened by the cost of purchasing the substances.
These substance abuse problems can be looked at as part of the therapeutic process following detoxification.  Although they may take some time to repair once a person has stopped using their substance and been returned to mental health their work performance is likely to improve.
Substance abuse problems in relationships arise through the behaviour people adopt while abusively drinking alcohol or using drugs.  They become selfish and will go to any length to obtain and use their substance.  This selfish behaviour and obsession with self makes them very difficult to live with.  Additionally their mood may swing dramatically, they become unreliable, and they seem to place more value on their substance than on the people around them.
Problems in relationships can be dealt with in therapy at the substance abuse rehabilitation centre.  Special therapy sessions, known as conjoint family therapy, can go a long way in helping the family to regain it’s balance after a member becomes addicted.  These sessions allow the family relationships to start healing.
We’ve seen a wide range of substance abuse problems and looked at ways in which therapy can address them.  The truth is that you can prevent substance abuse from developing into full blown addiction.  Addiction treatment centre’s can halt the progression of abuse and prevent future problems developing.
If you would like help in finding rehab options please contact one of our addiction treatment consultants.  Your treatment outcome can be improved by selecting the centre that best matches your individual needs.  Our expert intake coordinators will give you free confidential advice when choosing a treatment centre.

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