Alcohol and drug abuse can start off feeling like a small problem or guilty pleasure, but it can quickly spiral into an addiction that wreaks havoc upon your life and those around you.

It may be tempting to dismiss your substance usage as nothing more than a minor distraction, but it’s important to know if you have a problem so that you can seek help before addiction causes any more damage in your life. Ask the questions below of yourself to think more about your substance usage. 

  • Has my alcohol or drug use negatively affected my personal life? Have I lost friends or family because of my substance abuse? Have I lost significant others because of my substance abuse? Have my loved ones talked to me about my substance usage?
  • Have I lied to a loved one about my alcohol or drug use? 
  • Has my alcohol or drug use negatively affected my professional or academic life? Have my grades fallen? Has my work performance gone down? Have coworkers or classmates mentioned their concerns to me?
  • Have I been unable to finish assignments at work or school because of my alcohol or drug use? Have I been experiencing a loss in productivity? Do normal, routine tasks suddenly seem much more difficult?
  • Has my alcohol or drug use negatively affected my health? Have I been experiencing weight loss/weight gain? Sleeplessness? Impaired coordination? Changes in appetite? More serious health issues?
  • Despite the negative consequences, do I still continue to drink/use alcohol or drugs?
  • Have I ever used alcohol or drugs to alleviate the effects of another kind of alcohol or drug? Do I self medicate to deal with the side effects of another substance?
  • Have I ever had to seek medical care because of my alcohol or drug use?
  • Has my alcohol or drug use ever left me feeling like I can’t handle the responsibilities of life? Is getting out of bed difficult? Do normal tasks feel impossible without alcohol or drugs?
  • Do I use alcohol or drugs habitually? Do I use them every day? Every week? Every few hours?
  • Do I think about alcohol or drugs constantly? When I’m not using substances, am I thinking about when I’ll have them next? Am I distracted at work or school thinking about using them?
  • Am I scared of running out of alcohol or drugs? Am I constantly trying to get more?
  • Have I tried to stop using alcohol or drugs before but failed?
  • Do I experience physical or mental discomfort when I’m not using alcohol or drugs? Do I experience symptoms of withdrawal? Does my body ache for alcohol or drugs when I don’t have them?

If you answered ‘yes’ to any of the above questions, you may have an alcohol or drug problem and need to seek treatment. Consider talking to a medical professional before continuing forward. To learn more about the different treatment options, learn more here

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