Home > About Addictions > Recognising You Have an Addiction

Recognising You Have an Addiction

By: Jo Johnson - Updated: 4 Jan 2013 | comments*Discuss
Addiction; Symptoms; Diary; Admission;

Many addictions begin with a casual or social habit that escalates until it becomes a priority in your life, while other addictions are initiated the first time a substance is tried. Before being able to seek help, the addict must realise and understand that they do indeed have an addiction and are willing to admit that fact to others.

Signs of an Addiction

Many addictions carry physical symptoms that a strong indicator of long-term or over use of a substance.

Nasal bleeds and congestion are commonly associated with cocaine use, solvents or stimulants. Headaches, a dry mouth, nausea and vomiting are all common to many users, leading to a reduced appetite and weight loss.

Asides from the physical attributes of addiction, there are a great many social factors that may be influenced or altered. Have your friends and family become more distant? Are close relationships strained or breaking down? You may feel as though you cannot communicate effectively any longer, or that no-one understands you anymore. Perhaps you struggle to find the time to enjoy other aspects of your life. Many addicts find their employment suffers as a result of their addiction. This may be for a number of reasons; you may be experiencing changes in your sleeping pattern and cannot get up for work, perhaps you concentration has been affected and you cannot perform the tasks needed effectively, maybe your colleagues have noticed a change in you.

Often with addiction comes secrecy, with sufferers needing to hide the associated possessions from family, this is especially true of alcohol addiction. Maybe the cost of your habit has increased beyond your financial capabilities and household bills are not being paid or maybe you need to sell your belongings or steal to fund your habit.

Do you feel as though you are losing control of other aspects of your life? Do you feel as though the world is against you and that everyone is talking about you? Paranoia is a very common consequence of substance abuse and can have serious impact on your life, especially relationships.

Addicts often neglect their personal hygiene needs and are unconcerned about their appearance; has anyone made any comments that could be due to this?

There are a great many factors that suggest a person may be suffering from an addiction, but without admitting you have a problem, the road to recovery is a long way off.

If You Think You Have A Problem

If you realise you have a problem with addiction, the most important thing to do is to want to give-up. Seek professional help immediately using your GP, support groups or help lines to help you decide on the most appropriate action to take.Keep a diary of your habits and behaviours, often when it is written down, addicts are shocked to learn the full extent of their problem; this will also help you decide on the most effective treatment and will highlight patterns of behaviour.Alter you behaviour, change your circle of friends and social set-up.

There are a huge number of online and written sources offering questionnaires and assessments to gauge a person’s level of addiction, though the effectiveness and theory behind these is questionable, but they may be useful as a starting point. If you would like to be assessed, speak to a professional whom specialises in the field of addiction to receive accurate information.Many addicts only realise they have a problem when they are denied access to their habit, sometimes this is the only way in which an addict will admit to having an addiction.

You might also like...
Share Your Story, Join the Discussion or Seek Advice..
Why not be the first to leave a comment for discussion, ask for advice or share your story...

If you'd like to ask a question one of our experts (workload permitting) or a helpful reader hopefully can help you... We also love comments and interesting stories

(never shown)
(never shown)
(never shown)
(never shown)
Enter word:
Latest Comments
  • Gaby
    Re: Beating an Addiction to Drugs
    Hello, I need some advice/help.. its quite urgent and really need some help. The problem we have is rehab is around 6k or 12k a…
    27 February 2020
  • A.M1166
    Re: Beating an Addiction to Chocolate
    I have been addicted to various substances for as long as I can remember, alcohol, cannabis, cocaine, ecstasy, heroin,…
    27 February 2020
  • Jane
    Re: Beating an Addiction to Drugs
    I have a son who has addictionn illness, he is aware and wants to change but can't. I am getting very stressed when he is out…
    17 February 2020
  • Lynne
    Re: Beating an Addiction to Drugs
    My son is a recovering addict I desperately need to talk to someone one
    16 February 2020
  • Mjb
    Re: Addiction Treatment Centers: What to Expect
    My son is 44 has mental health issues and is self medicating with street valium.It has taken over his life he…
    4 February 2020
  • Hannah
    Re: Recognising Alcohol Addiciton
    Hi I drink about 2 bottles of wine a day start late afternoon until evening watch tv don’t remember much after about 7.30 then…
    9 January 2020
  • Joseph
    Re: Addiction to Shopping
    Hi, I wonder if you can help? I am slightly worried about my bills and during my constant worrying, i spend money on materialistic things…
    27 December 2019
  • Pandalove1
    Re: Recognising drug addiction.
    Hey I reaching out to you as well what can I say an addict. I’ve always done recreational drugs since I was a teen, taking pills…
    19 October 2019
  • Adrianon
    Re: How to Assess The Level of an Addiction
    My partner of 2 years drinks beer everyday. It has got to the stage where he supplements beer for food. Drinking at…
    10 August 2019
  • Kdawg
    Re: Physical Effects of Solvents
    I'm 25 turning 26 in a couple weeks, I've been on solvents for half my life on and off, I've been clean for maybe four months or…
    12 May 2019