When to Seek Substance Abuse Treatment

When to Seek Substance Abuse Treatment

When to Seek Substance Abuse Treatment

When it comes to substance use and addiction, it’s tough to acknowledge that you may have an issue.

In fact, according to SAMHSA’s National Survey on Drug Use and Health, only 10% of people struggling with substance dependence or abuse have sought treatment.

Many people decide to seek treatment because they don't believe they've hit rock bottom or don't think the problem is 'bad enough.' However, if substance abuse is causing adverse effects in your life, it may be time to take a closer look by learning a few facts and educating yourself on addiction and substance abuse treatment.

Understanding the severity of an addiction

Addiction is generally diagnosed on a spectrum of mild, moderate, or severe. The following 11 criteria can help you better understand where you or a loved one's addiction is.

  • Feel out of control
  • Have a desire to quit but feel unable
  • Spend a lot of time trying to obtain the substance
  • Experience cravings
  • Lack of responsibility
  • Issues with interpersonal relationships
  • Loss of interest
  • Dangerous usage
  • Increased tolerance or need
  • Withdrawal

The severity is determined by how many of the criteria are met. For example, if 2 or 3 of the criteria listed apply, you may qualify for a mild substance use disorder. A mental health professional like a substance abuse counselor can help you determine exactly where you lie on the spectrum.

A few signs you may need treatment

A few telltale signs show that drug use has gotten out of your control, and you need help. You may want to start looking for a drug treatment program if you recognize the following signs:

Drug use has become your main priority.

This is one of the telltale signs of addiction. Your daily responsibilities and things you used to enjoy have to take a backseat to drug use. If you find that you've been spending an increased amount of time, energy, and resources to acquire and use a substance, you may have a problem and can benefit from starting an addiction treatment program.

Your health is suffering.

Addiction is associated with a variety of adverse health effects. The actual drug of choice can influence the specific effects. For example, in particular, alcohol addiction is linked to long-term liver problems and various types of cancer.

It can ultimately take a toll on your body and the mind, causing a variety of symptoms:

  • Physical health: Your physical health can change depending on several factors, such as how long the drug has been taken, the quantity, and the type of drug.
  • Mental health: Changes in a person's mental state can present as increased symptoms of anxiety, depression, and in some cases, symptoms of psychosis. If you or other people in your life start noticing unusual changes in the way you think, feel or behave, you may need treatment.

You take an excessive amount to achieve the desired effect.

When you first take a substance, your body and mind aren't accustomed to the effects. This is the reason why the first high is often called the "best." Over time, however, the body starts to adapt and slowly builds tolerance. As your tolerance increases, the body needs more and more of the drug to produce the same outcomes.

You’ve tried to quit on your own but haven’t been successful.

Addiction is a condition that's marked by periods of recovery and relapse. It's not uncommon for people to try and find new ways to end their substance use on their own. If your past efforts haven't been successful, you may benefit from an addiction treatment program. Treatment can provide the safety, structure, medical attention, therapy, and stability needed to end addiction.

Finding help for substance abuse

Addiction is a chronic disease, and you don't need to hit rock bottom to get help. If you believe substance abuse is getting out of hand, remember that it's never too late to get the treatment you deserve.

At Michigan Psychological Care, we craft an individualized plan for each patient. If you or a loved one are seeking treatment for alcohol abuse or struggling with medication abuse, our plan will cater to your needs. Typically, at least one one-hour individual counseling session per week is required.

Factors in your substance abuse treatment plan could include:

  • How motivated you are
  • How long you’ve been clean or have been trying to get clean
  • If you’ve already started treatment at another facility

We also weigh other factors during early sessions to make sure your needs are met. We encourage everyone to get clean to partake in individualized counseling, but our Gratiot and CCMC locations also offer group counseling sessions. It may be intimidating to open up to a group, but we've seen an incredible amount of support and encouragement come from group sessions. If you've struggled to get clean and stay sober, the group environment may be just what you need.

Our team of care providers is committed to helping you recover from addiction. We’ll take the time to understand your unique circumstances and craft a treatment plan specifically for you. Contact Us to schedule an appointment or call one of our facilities.



Keywords: substance abuse treatment, addiction counseling, addiction therapy