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Alcohol and Substance Addiction

Addiction is different than an occasional indulgence. It is a chronic brain disease that makes someone need to consume a drug or alcohol or complete an activity.  The line between social use and problem use can be very fine, and many Americans drink or use drugs recreationally. Over two thirds of the adult population consumes alcohol on an occasional basis and somewhere in the neighborhood of 24 million Americans have used illegal drugs in the last month.

When does recreational or occasional use become addiction? It is difficult to predict who will become addicted and who won’t, but the surest sign of addiction is when the user seeks out their substance of choice as a need, even when using is harmful to them and those around them.

Symptoms of addiction to alcohol

  • Drinking alone
  • Blacking out while drinking
  • When drinking with others, consuming alcohol much more quickly
  • Carrying a supply of alcohol, even to places where it is inappropriate or illegal
  • Denying or rationalizing obvious problems caused by their behavior (absenteeism, abusive outbursts, inappropriate behavior)
  • Legal problems (DUIs, accidents, etc.)

Symptoms of addiction to drugs

  • Using drugs to escape from stress or problems
  • Using drugs in order to enjoy activities that were once pleasurable
  • Inability to stop using the drug
  • Legal problems (arrests, violence, accidents)
  • Emotional problems (anger, depression, anxiety)
  • Being repeatedly asked to quit by friends and family 

Effective Treatment

Addiction is a chronic disorder, and relapses are common. Centerstone’s professional and caring staff can help you along the road to recovery. We offer award-winning, evidence-based care for addictions, and we even offer intervention services if you need help talking to someone you love about their addiction. 

Take our free, confidential mental health screening to help decide if treatment is right for you.

If you or someone you love needs help, contact us via email or phone:

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