Signs There is a Mental Health Disorder Hiding Behind Substance Abuse

Mental health problems often coexist with substance abuse disorders. These co-occurring disorders happen for several reasons, often as people suffering from mental health disorders turn to substances to self-medicate. Mental health disorders can arise after using addictive substances, too.

Many people who have substance abuse problems often have mental health disorders like depression, anxiety, personality disorders, and schizophrenia. Recognizing the signs of co-occurring disorders helps people get the treatment they need. Without proper help, mental health disorders and substance abuse can change the way the brain functions and reduce the sufferer’s quality of life. Fortunately, there are several signs that show someone you are able could have a substance abuse problem and a mental health disorder.

Behavioral Signs

When people have substance abuse problems, they often have changes in behavior. Often, they stop attending work or school, so their performance drops noticeably. Another common sign is a lack of motivation, which shows up at work, school, and home.

People with substance abuse problems tend to become angry, which later manifest in them getting into trouble with fights and other illegal activities. Their anger could show up suddenly, along with other moody behavior like irritability and agitation.

Other behavioral signs include secretive actions that might hide changes in appetite or sleep patterns. Some people have hyperactivity or giddiness, then they become angry and agitated as their substances begin to wear off. When people begin using drugs they often behave with some paranoia or anxiety, especially if they are afraid of getting caught.

Physical Signs

People addicted to substances often lose or gain weight quickly, depending on their substance of choice. Many substances affect the eyes, making pupils look larger than normal and making them look bloodshot.

Your loved ones might begin to deteriorate in appearance, as the drugs wreak havoc on their bodies, or they become so addicted that they don’t care about their appearance. You might notice strange smells from the drugs or the methods they use to try to hide the signs. More signs include impaired movements and slurred speech.

Social Signs

Drug addiction can also show up through social changes. People with drug addictions tend to start spending time with new people, especially other people who use drugs. So, your loved one might stop engaging in once favorite hobbies and activities. They’ll also stop going to favorite hangout spots as they begin to go where the drugs are instead.

Because drug addicts tend to have attendance problems at work, they often have financial problems. Drugs are expensive, so addicts will look for alternative ways for money. They’ll ask their friends and family for money, but they’ll make up excuses why they need it. They might become angry if you ask about their financial problems. Addicts often end up with legal problems, but they struggle to pay for the help they need.

Drug addicts often have problems maintaining relationships because they prioritize drugs over people, which tends to leave them lonely. They’ll turn to other addicts for companionship, but the relationship won’t be real.





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