How do I Know if I'm Really an Addict?

People who use drugs or alcohol excessively often wonder, how do I know if I'm really an addict? In some cases, they're experiencing the harmful side effects of their substance abuse. In other cases, friends or family are warning them about addiction.

Perhaps this is a situation you're facing too. You'd like to know the answer to this important question.

Am I Really an Addict?

The best way to find out if you're really an addict is to talk with a professional about your symptoms. Without knowing you personally, it's difficult to say. There are different levels of substance abuse. You may be participating in some behaviors that indicate abuse. Or, you could be exhibiting symptoms of a drug or alcohol addiction. The best way to know is to take a look at some of the signs of addiction.

Physical Signs of a Drug or Alcohol Addiction

Some common physical signs of drug or alcohol addiction might include:

  • You may frequently feel tired during the day
  • You may have trouble sleeping at night
  • You may feel strange when the substances start to wear off
  • You may have symptoms of depression or anxiety
  • You may have shaky hands
  • Your eyes may be bloodshot
  • You may have bad breath
  • You may get bloody noses
  • You may have a decreased appetite
  • You may be losing or gaining weight
  • You may slur your speech

Keep in mind that you don't have to have all of these signs of addiction to be addicted.

Behavioral Signs of an Alcohol or Drug Addiction

Sometimes it's easier to tell if you have an addiction by looking at some of your behaviors. The following are a list of behavioral signs of addiction.

  • Developing a tolerance for the amount of the substance that's used
  • Going to multiple doctors to obtain prescriptions (doctor shopping)
  • Feeling as though you want to stop using, but you're not able to
  • Being unable to stop using even though you're having medical problems
  • Spending a lot of time thinking about the substance of abuse
  • Using more often than you intend to
  • Losing interest in favorite activities
  • Having problems keeping up with responsibilities
  • Being told that you have an addiction and need drug or alcohol rehab
  • Borrowing or stealing money to pay for drugs or alcohol
  • Keeping substance abuse behaviors a secret
  • Spending time with different people who all use substances

Do any of the above behaviors sound like you? If they do, then it's possible that you may have an addiction.

Getting addiction treatment is so important if you're addicted to alcohol or drugs. If you're still not sure, you may want to take a quiz to find out if you need to go to rehab.

If you do need help for an addiction, Northpoint Recovery can provide you with support.