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17 Signs of medication and substance addiction 

Danielle LaPointe, Executive Director of Sunspire Health Hilton Head, discusses the signs of medication and substance addiction disorder.


Identifying the symptoms of substance and medication addiction

Substance addiction influences individuals from all kinds of different backgrounds and financial statuses. Whatever the reason a person begins taking medications, resistance and reliance can happen rapidly - before the person even understands the dependence grabbing hold. The tolerance of the medication continues to build, causing the individual to over-medicate on a regular basis.  Before they know it, an addiction has set in and it can be extremely difficult to stop this new pattern of drug use.


Medication and substance addiction will have signs. These signs could be in physical appearance or changes in behavior - in most cases both accrue together.

The most detectable indications of substance misuse are those that influence the body's internal workings. For instance, the body's resilience to the medication or substance happens when the individual continually consumes medication over time, while having to increase consumption in order to get high. This craving for a greater high is where things starts to get serious and can lead to an overdose.

What are some physical changes in appearance of addiction?

  1. Eating habits

  2. Weight changes

  3. Changes in the eyes: bloodshot, glazed, and dilated or constricted pupils

  4. Skin issues: acne, bruises and infections

  5. Condition of the teeth

  6. Organ dysfunction can be a sign of long term substance misuse

What are some behavioral symptoms of addiction?

  1. Involvement in criminal behavior

  2. Changes in personality: rapid mood swings, reclusive or isolating behavior

  3. Financial problems

  4. Changes in routines and priorities

  5. Changes in sleep patterns

  6. Changes in a social network

  7. Depression

  8. Disheveled appearance

  9. Lack of energy and enthusiasm

  10. Irritability and aggressive behavior

  11. Absences and disinterest in the activities


Struggling with addiction

Breaking free from this debilitating pattern requires help from a certified addiction specialist and licensed addiction treatment center. Substance addiction wreaks devastation on the body and mind and can end in premature death if gone untreated. If you find yourself or someone you cherish developing an addiction, it is imperative to seek professional help.

Sunspire Health


Topics: Addiction , News , Community