Drug addiction is serious. People pick up drug habits in many different ways: to be social, as a recreation or to escape. The first step is usually voluntary, but once a person is addicted, it takes more than willpower alone to kick the habit. Changes in the brain due to drug use interfere with a user’s ability to resist the urge to compulsively seek out drugs despite potential harmful consequences.
Building up a tolerance for a drug is a warning sign. Tolerance indicates that you have taken the drug long enough that normal doses no longer have the desired effect. This trend towards higher doses, chasing a high, can easily lead to an overdose if not brought into check. Other signs of drug use include bloodshot eyes, abrupt weight changes and bruises or infections at drug entrance site on the body. Signs vary a lot depending on the drug. Dramatic shifts in personality and disruption in brain function are likely.
Reasons to Quit
Taking drugs to the point of tolerance or addiction is dangerous. It could kill you. Coming up with a list of reasons to quit is a great first step to kicking the habit.
- To feel real again: Many people seek out drugs to escape their current reality. They take drugs to reduce the pain. The more you take the more you need. Eventually, you feel like you have to be high all the time because the pain never ceases. What you fail to see is the pills are contributing to your pain, not relieving it. Drop the habit and seek help.
- To hold down a job: If you become addicted to drugs, soon it is hard to hide your use. Your main focus shifts and employers notice. Before long you only care to work to feed your addiction. Clearing your system of these toxic pills helps you see your purpose in life. It allows you to refocus on what is important.
- To be an active participant in your life: When you become addicted to drugs, you lose control. You have rock bottom lows after soaring highs. You are constantly chasing a feeling. You are no longer in control of your life. You are no longer making the decisions. It is time to take back control.
Once you realize you need and want to change. Pay attention to your drug use. Keep track of it, so you can see how it is controlling your life. Make a pros and cons list of quitting. What are the costs? What are the benefits? Think about the things that are or were once important to you in your life. Now that you are committed, it is time to start taking action. Explore your treatment options. Seek out a support system of family and friends as well as a support group of people who understand what you are going through. Learn ways of coping with stress and other triggers that do not involve drug use. Talk to a therapist. Exercise, explore outside or adopt a pet. But most of all, get the help you need as soon as possible.
Overcoming a drug addiction is hard. It requires outside help. It requires support. You do have the power. It requires you to take that first step, to seek out the help you need.
Image courtesy of [Stuart Miles] at FreeDigitalPhotos.net