Drug Addiction

Drug Addiction

Drug addiction can take many forms, and one thing is always true: it is not a moral failure. This chronic brain disease requires professional intervention, and should be taken seriously.

Drug treatment is intended to help people suffering from addiction to stop compulsive drug use. A wide variety of care options is available, depending on each individual’s substance use history, severity of addiction, and personal needs. Because drug addiction is a chronic disease of the brain, it is necessary to seek comprehensive, evidence-based treatment provided by trained professionals.

Types of Drug Addiction

While some drugs are used for medical purposes, others exist purely for their narcotic effects. Both types of substance carry the risk of addiction.

Substances associated with addiction are:

  • Bath Salts
  • Barbiturates
  • Benzodiazepines
  • Cocaine
  • Ecstasy
  • Heroin
  • LSD
  • Marijuana
  • Methamphetamine
  • Mushrooms
  • Opioid Medications
  • PCP
  • Prescription Drugs
  • Sleep Medications

These drugs fall into three major categories: depressants, stimulants, and hallucinogens.

Depressants, also called downers, reduce brain stimulation and depress nervous system activity. They include benzodiazepines, barbiturates, sleep medications, and other sedatives. Signs of depressant use include dilated pupils, difficulty concentrating, fatigue, dizziness, confusion, weight gain, and depression.

Stimulants are a class of psychoactive drugs that elevate mood and enhance alertness. They include cocaine, amphetamines, nicotine, and ecstasy. People consume these “uppers” in a variety of forms: swallowed as pills, snorted as a powder, injected with a needle as a liquid, or heated and smoked as crystals. Signs of stimulant use include euphoria, talkativeness, erratic behavior, insomnia, loss of appetite, mania, anxiety, hallucinations, paranoia, or violent behavior.

Hallucinogens are named for their ability to induce visual or auditory hallucinations along with dissociation. Examples of these drugs are LSD, psilocybin (mushrooms), DMT, PCP, and ketamine. Those who use hallucinogens may experience nausea, headaches, racing heart rate, dry mouth, confusing sensory inputs, and excessive sweating. In the long term, the risk of health problems like anxiety, weight loss, and speech problems will increase.

Signs of Drug Use

Certain patterns of behavior are common to those suffering from addiction to drugs.

  • Continuing to use drugs, even when there are negative health or social consequences.
  • Prioritizing substance use above all else.
  • Spending increasing amounts of time obtaining, using, and recovering from the drug.
  • Stealing or lying to get more drugs.
  • Worsening performance at school or work.
  • Trying to quit and being unable to.
  • Isolating oneself from friends and family.
  • Losing interest in once-loved activities and hobbies.
  • Experiencing withdrawal symptoms and cravings for the drug.
  • Changing one’s behavior or personality (becoming erratic, sedated, or irritable).
  • Developing a tolerance (needing more of the drug to feel the same effects)

Drug Addiction Treatment

Treatments for drug addiction can include medications, behavioral therapies, or a combination of the two. Specific treatment plans will vary based on each individual’s background, needs, and types of drugs used.

Those who are struggling with substance use disorders require treatment for both the physical and mental components of addiction. Detoxification rids the body of all traces of the problematic substance, while residential or outpatient treatment provides an in-depth understanding of what spurred one’s drug use, as well as coping strategies and tactics to avoid future use.

Treatment for drug addiction involves:

  • An initial intake assessment
  • Detoxification
  • Dialectical Behavioral Therapy (DBT)
  • Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing (EMDR)
  • Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT)
  • Motivational Interviewing (MI)
  • Group therapy
  • Participation in local Narcotics Anonymous meetings
  • Life skills training
  • Step-down programs to transition back to daily life
  • Ongoing supportive care

Drug Addiction Treatment at Pine Grove

Pine Grove Behavioral Health and Addiction Services provides a range of age- and gender- specific treatment options that are personalized to the needs of each individual. Recovery is possible. To learn more about the options available for you or your loved one, call 1-888-574-4673 to speak with a member of our team.