The not-so-obvious signs of addiction

Published Feb. 23, 2018

We all know the most visible sign of addiction is someone who's compulsively using a substance, even in the face of sometimes devastating consequences like losing a job or relationships or having legal troubles.

But addiction is about far more than substance use – it’s a complex illness that affects physical, emotional and mental health. In fact, the American Society of Addiction Medicine fills five pages with its full definition of the disease.

What’s important to understand is that drug and alcohol addiction impacts the body, mind and spirit. And like other diseases, the signs and symptoms will vary depending on the person and the severity and stage of the illness.

Here are just a few examples of less obvious signs that someone might be suffering from addiction:

  • Low self-esteem or poor sense of self-worth
  • Isolation
  • Increased anxiety
  • Compulsiveness
  • Trouble learning
  • Problems relating to others
  • More sensitive to stress
  • Not eating well
  • Argumentative
  • Loss of interest in things
  • Irritable
  • Mood swings
  • Forgetfulness

If you’re concerned about yourself or someone you care about, a qualified professional can help you with an evaluation and official medical diagnosis.

Our coaching team can also help. We work with loved ones and those suffering from the disease to connect them with the right resources at the right time. We also provide structure and long-term support to help members get on a path to wellness.

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