No one actually wants to believe and accept that they are an addict and so instead they put it off and ignore the warning signs. You’ll hear alcoholics declaring that they only drink at weekends yet their recycling bin tells a different story. Or you’ll ask your friend why they have needle marks all over their arms but they’ll tell you it’s always been like that.
Denial is one of the classic signs of addiction, so if you or a friend keeps vehemently denying that there is an addiction, that perhaps is your first place to start.
Getting help for an addiction is the easy part – there are services everywhere that provide care and support for anyone suffering with an addiction. Many people turn to addiction when they are stressed in their life or going through a particularly hard time.
Mental illness is closely linked to addiction and it doesn’t take a rocket scientist to work out why. When people are suffering mentally, they sometimes aren’t in the right frame of mind to reach out to the people or resources that will help them. Instead they turn to alcohol or drugs to numb the pain they so badly want to escape from. Decades ago, mental health treatment was denied to addicts as an incentive to give up, but experts have realised that that’s an extremely unfair approach and so both can be treated together at a dual diagnosis rehab.
If you encounter cravings then that’s usually a sure sign that you are in fact addicted to something. If the cravings become incessantly hard to beat then you need to seek help to make sure you can ignore them rather than caving to them.
If you do manage to ignore a craving, you might find that you’re met with shaking, sweating, headaches and diarrhoea – all are withdrawal symptoms that indicate you’re addicted and need to get help fast before it gets even worse. This is often what happens to people who go “cold turkey” and it’s why giving up an addiction on your own with no moral support is so hard. There are physical struggles you have to battle whilst also trying to convince yourself mentally that you don’t want something. Both together are a recipe for disaster that usually spells out addiction.
Other signs that you’re addicted to something are:
– You can’t stop thinking about it. Your day is consumed with thoughts about having it but it doesn’t just stop there. You may also be thinking about how you’re going to hide it, how you’re going to get your hands on it and so on.
– You’re lying in order to cover it up
If you’re having to lie to your friends and family about how much you drink and so on, that is usually a sign that you are already addicted. It might be because people have already started to notice and comment, but you will want to continue so you decide it’s best to conceal it instead.