Am I An Addict?

Am i an Addict?

Am I An Addict? The Importance Of Honesty.

A lot of people experiment with drugs and don’t become addicts. This is not true for most of us. When I began experimenting with opiates in high school, I thought it was all fun and games. How could this go downhill? You feel great and your mood is greatly increased. It’s fun to party with. How could it get to a point of not being fun?

When I arrived at Pathfinders Recovery Center, I had become completely addicted and my life was in shambles. My existence seemed hopeless. My opiate addiction was no fun whatsoever at this point. I was living on the street, crashing on people’s couches, and committing petty crimes so that I could feed my habit.

What is an addict?

An addict is somebody that has formed an addiction to a particular substance. You become an addict when your entire life and routine revolves around your drug of choice. Your top priority is either getting high or looking to get high. All of your other obligations become unimportant. These are the top signs of drug addiction.

There is nothing like the power of honesty. When you enter into the world of addiction, there are a lot of lies you tell yourself and others. I can’t tell you how many times I’ve heard people say they are clean. A lot of times, these people are not being honest.

I lied to myself as well as a lot of other people during my addiction. I told people I didn’t have a problem. I told myself the same thing. When I was finally willing to admit to my family that I had a drug addiction, the truth truly did set me free. I finally felt okay opening up about it and getting it off my chest.

Dependence Vs. Addiction

Sometimes the lines blur between drug dependence and addiction, but there is a difference. Everyone’s experience with drug abuse is different on some level, and the drugs all affect us differently. The term dependence refers to those who have begun to develop a physical dependence on a drug.

Addiction is defined as a change in behavior and brain chemistry as a result of drug dependence. I didn’t know an awful lot about how we use these terms until I entered recovery. I didn’t have a lot of education on drugs at all even though I was an addict. Pathfinders did a great job of educating me on the power and pull that addiction has on us mentally and physically.

When you decide to go to rehab, you are obviously at a very low point. The great thing about going to rehab is that oftentimes, you have finally hit a wall and made a conscious decision to try and get better.

A lot of addicts don’t ever even have this moment. Once you decide you want to fix the problem and get better, you’ve already done a lot more than other people can say. There are a lot of things to consider when you want to get clean. How much does rehab cost? What are the levels of care in addiction treatment? These are all things that you will come to learn the more you focus on recovery.

The Top Signs Of Drug Addiction

When you finally make the decision to get clean, you begin to understand what got you there in the first place. When you are finally ready to work out your issues, you learn a lot about yourself and how you got here in the first place. It’s easy to see the signs in other addicts.

The number one sign is lying. As I mentioned above, most of the people in your life are lying to you in some way when you are deep into your addiction. You avoid the people in your life that might encourage you to get clean. You don’t want your family to see what is being done to you. You tell them everything is fine when it isn’t.

Denial is a big part of the process. You get really good at hiding things when you are an addict. You become a master of concealing the parts of your life that you don’t want people to see. But even the best liars slip up. This can create a lot of problems in your relationships. No one wants to be lied to. It can create a lot of resentment and anger. A good relationship is based on trust.

Changes in mood are also a sign of addiction. You can go from being in a happy, uplifting high to a very low period of depression. Your brain is constantly fluctuating between the highs and lows, and it really messes with you. These are things that are impossible to hide after a while. You can only hide your mood for so long before it becomes obvious that you are struggling.

Paranoia and anxiety are other clear signs of addiction. Living in a constant cycle of trying to get high and make sure you have what you need puts you in a very rough state emotionally. Just getting through the periods between each high can be exhausting. If you don’t know where your next high is coming from, it can throw you into a tailspin of emotions.

I Am An Addict: Next Steps To Take

When you admit you have a problem, you have made the first step. It’s a giant step and should not be underestimated. You’ve done something commendable when you reach out for help and admit there is something wrong. When you are ready to be totally honest and upfront about it, you can get help a lot easier.

There are a lot of self-assessment tools and questions that you must consider. Going through the NIDA guidelines can help you figure out what level of addiction you are at, and what kind of help you might need. The national institute on drug abuse has a standard test that can help you better understand your level of addiction. They also offer many other further resources for addiction information.

The CAGE and MAST self-test tools are other ways you can assess and identify where you are at in your addiction. On top of these assessments, there is the question of how to choose a reputable rehab facility. One place might be better for one addict, while another might suit a different addict. You can never really tell unless you give it a shot.

Effective Treatment Types For Drug Addiction

Effective Treatment Types For Drug Addiction

Finding the right form of treatment is key to your addiction recovery. Depending on your level of addiction, medication-assisted treatment for addiction might be the best option. When I was in recovery, it sounded a bit strange to combat my addiction to medication with other medication, but it helped tremendously during my withdrawal period. If you’re anywhere near where I was, a medically assisted detox is really the only way to do it.

When is residential addiction treatment needed? This is one of the things that the NIDA, CAGE, and MAST tests can help you determine, but it can also be pretty obvious if you have a very serious physical addiction. If you have a long-term addiction the withdrawal symptoms can be a lot to overcome without some kind of medical assistance.

A lot of us struggling with addiction aren’t exactly in great shape financially, either. Worrying about how to pay for addiction treatment can make a lot of people not even consider it. Fortunately, there is a lot more emphasis on getting people into treatment no matter what their income is.

There are ways you can get into a program either for cheap or free depending on your situation. It will take some research on your part, but if you are really willing to get clean you must be ready to put in some work. Fighting addiction is a personal thing, but you will need a lot of help along the way. As you begin your journey into sobriety, you should embrace the process and ask for help if need be.

Escape Addiction With Pathfinders Recovery Centers.

I wouldn’t be where I am today without the knowledgeable and passionate people that helped me during my stay. I was an emotional and physical wreck when I first got to treatment. I was afraid that I would be judged and not helped. It was the exact opposite of that, and I have a lot of people to thank for being instrumental in my recovery.

When you open up and begin to trust people who really want to help, it restores your faith in humanity and the overall process of addiction recovery. For the longest time, I didn’t think treatment would do anything for me. It would just be a big waste of time. How could I have known that if I never even gave it a chance?

When I finally did give it a chance, it was the total opposite experience of what I had imagined. I didn’t know you could come back from such a low place. I assumed because I was where I was at, there was no coming back. I learned that recovery is possible for anyone. Anybody that wants to give it a chance, it can work wonders. If you really want it, it’s there for you.

How to Tell When a Drug Addict Is Lying

How to Tell When a Drug Addict Is Lying

Have you ever googled “how to tell when a drug addict is lying”? If your loved one is addicted to drugs or alcohol, it may seem like you don’t know them anymore. Your once loving spouse or honest child may now be acting like a stranger.

It can be very hard to cope when someone you love is now lying to you all the time or trying to manipulate you. It’s shocking and you may feel betrayed every time you find out that they weren’t being honest. 

However, this is normal behavior for people who are addicted to substances. The National Institute on Drug Abuse describes addiction as a chronic disease that’s centered around compulsive drug seeking and use. Despite harmful consequences, the addict finds it difficult to control their actions.

Even though your loved one may have previously been a straightforward person, they will now do anything to get their hands on the substance to which they’re addicted. This includes lying.

This may be hard to understand. In this article, we’ll provide some insight into common things addicts say and how to tell when a drug addict is lying.

How Addictive Substances Change the Brain

How Addictive Substances Change the Brain

Drugs and alcohol increase the levels of dopamine in the brain. This makes the user experience heightened pleasure, euphoria, and a sense of wellbeing. The individual wants to feel these sensations again so they drink or use drugs again.

If they repeat this behavior time and time again, the brain gets accustomed to the presence of the addictive substance. 

Eventually, the brain no longer produces sufficient levels of dopamine on its own and the person doesn’t feel good unless they use drugs or alcohol.

As time goes on, the individual will do whatever it takes to acquire and consume the substance. This includes lying and stealing.

Heavy or long-term use of addictive substances can damage the part of the brain that controls judgment, making it difficult for the individual to make rational choices. It becomes hard for the person to think objectively.

They may say or do anything it takes to get more drugs or alcohol, avoid going into withdrawal, or avoid the consequences of their actions.

Why Do Addicts Lie and Manipulate

Addicts lie to themselves and others and it’s hard for them to stop. Some of the reasons why they lie to their spouses, relatives, and friends include:

  • Shame. This may surprise you since they keep doing the same things over and over again but addicts are often ashamed of their actions. They lie so no one has to find out what they’re doing.
  • Avoidance of confrontation. If your loved one was honest with you about everything they did or everything they plan to do, it would probably lead to an argument. Therefore, they lie to keep the peace.
  • Protection of loved ones. People who are addicted to drugs and alcohol know that their habits could hurt their loved ones. Often, lying is easier than changing their behavior.
  • Changes to the brain. Addiction rewires the brain such that getting drunk or high is the individual’s main focus. Since lying or cheating allows them to get more of the substance, they think it’s okay.
  • Denial. Sometimes the reason your loved one can’t be honest with you is that they can’t admit to themselves that they have a problem.

Common Lies Addicts Tell

Common Lies Addicts Tell

People who are addicted to drugs or alcohol can lie about small details or invent entire stories. If you’re aware of some of the things your loved one may lie about, you’ll have a better idea of when you should be skeptical. Addicts often lie about:

  • Where they went
  • Who they saw
  • Why they drank or used drugs
  • How much alcohol they drank or how much drugs they used
  • How they acquired the substance
  • How they’re spending their money
  • How their substance use is affecting their job or relationship

If you’ve noticed negative changes in your loved one and you get the sense that they’re not being honest, it’s possible that a substance abuse problem could be involved.

Lies People Who Are Addicted to Substances Tell Themselves

Even though each person struggling with addiction will have a unique experience, the lies they tell themselves tend to be quite similar. These lies keep them from admitting they’re unwell and seeking professional help. Here are things your loved one may be saying to themselves:

  • I can stop drinking/smoking/injecting drugs whenever I want. Many addicts want to believe they are still in control of their lives. They don’t want to admit that alcohol or drugs are controlling them, especially if they’re using substances to deal with trauma or another mental health problem.
  • I’m not like other people who drink or use drugs. Addicts tend to compare themselves to other people they know. If they’ve never passed out on the street, been arrested, or been fired because of their drug use, they think they’re doing okay. However, addiction can range from mild to severe and it’s a progressive illness. This means that it gets worse if it goes untreated.
  • I need drugs or alcohol to deal with my problems. People who become addicted to drugs or alcohol often start using these substances as a way to self-medicate. Unfortunately, while they may feel better in the short term, substance use can make mental and emotional problems worse in the long run. Drugs and alcohol are not a substitute for psychiatric or psychological help but addicts tell themselves otherwise.
  • Life won’t be fun if I’m sober. Addicts often get accustomed to a lifestyle that revolves around drinking or using drugs. Therefore, they tell themselves that life would be boring otherwise. However, the reality is the addiction is far from fun, and life is centered around getting and using drugs. Still, this belief keeps people from seeking treatment. Sobriety is actually a healthier and more enjoyable choice since it involves new activities, new friends, and a new way of thinking.
  • My addiction doesn’t affect anyone else. People who are addicted to drugs or alcohol often isolate themselves. If they socialize, it’s usually with people who are using the same substances. Therefore, they may think that their actions aren’t affecting their families. When people try to intervene, they may think they’re judging them or trying to control them. In their world, no one else is being affected by what they’re doing.
  • I don’t have anything to live for so I might as well continue drinking or using drugs. Individuals who are addicted to drugs or alcohol are often depressed. Grief, sadness, or guilt often drive them to use substances. Before long they get trapped in a harmful cycle. They self-medicate because they’re depressed and then the drugs and alcohol make them even more depressed after the high wears off. A person in the depths of depression doesn’t feel like life is worth living.

How to Tell When A Drug Addict is Lying: Possible Indicators

People who are addicted to drugs and alcohol lie often and they may be very convincing. It can, therefore, be difficult for the people close to them to tell when they’re telling the truth. There’s no foolproof way of detecting a lie in the absence of evidence.

However, if you know what to look for, it may be a little easier.

Signs that your loved one is lying include:

  • Lack of eye contact
  • Suddenly speaking more loudly
  • Fidgeting or rocking back and forth
  • Giving vague answers or trying to change the subject
  • Speaking in broken sentences or using lots of filler words
  • Speaking in a higher tone

Not everyone will show the same signs when they lie, and some people are better at being dishonest than others.

However, you should trust your instincts. If you believe something is going on, it probably is.

What to Do If You Suspect Someone is Addicted to Drugs

What to Do If You Suspect Someone is Addicted to Drugs

Loving a person who is struggling to control their drug use can be scary and stressful. However, that person will need your support in order to recover. Try to create a calm environment in which you can discuss their lies and impress upon them the need to get help.

It’s a good idea to contact an addiction specialist for advice on how to approach what is likely to be a difficult conversation.

While you may be feeling hurt and manipulated, you need to focus on the other person’s wellbeing rather than your emotions. It’s important for the addict to know that you love them and you’ll help them if they seek treatment but you won’t tolerate further lies.

It may be tempting to avoid confrontation but this won’t help any of the parties involved.

Contact Pathfinders Recovery Center for Advice

If you’re unsure about how to deal with someone’s lies or you want information about addiction treatment, contact the professionals at Pathfinders Recovery Center. We’ll answer your questions and advise you about how you can support your loved one.

Contact us today to talk to an addictions counselor.