Signs of Addiction/ Alcoholism in Adolescents and Adults
Addiction is not specific to drug use, so this list aligns with alcoholic behavioral patterns as well. Addiction is a general term used to describe a dependency on any substance.
- Irritability, quick temper
- Tolerance (can use more / need to use more to obtain a high)
- Changes in sleeping patterns, sleeping too much or too little
- Skipping work, frequent sick days
- Withdrawal symptoms (vary by drug) *Also be cautious that some drugs can cause death if withdrawal is left untreated. Please seek help from medical professionals if these withdrawal symptoms are present- call 911 - seriously.
- Heroin, symptoms look like illness, vomiting, fevers, shaking, hot / cold, tired
- Alcohol, symptoms look like, shaking, hallucinations, delirium, headaches, low blood pressure/ high blood pressure, vomiting
- Benzo's (anti-anxiety, xanax/ klonopin/ ativan) shaking, seizures, memory loss, lethargy, anxiety
- Legal charges related to substances (alcohol or other drugs)
- Repeated attempts at quitting / wanting to quit
- Making several promises and failing to follow through
- Repeated consequences related to substances and continues to use- social problems, family tension
- Distant from others, family or usually close friends
- Attempts at therapy with no change
- Fluctuations in mood, sad, happy, irritable, depressed, fearful
- Theft from the home, school or peers
- Grades falling behind, skipping classes, or suspensions
- Changes in friends
- Missing money or no explanation of money missing
For parents, or family members, sometimes people who have problems with substance use can be quite evasive and manipulative. You may be accused of being paranoid, invasive or crazy. While struggling with an addiction it is common for the individual to blame others for their use, or become reactive when confronted about it.