Substance Use Disorders

Substance Use Disorders

Addiction is both an illness and a disease.

A variety of psychological, social genetic and other factors make some people more vulnerable than others to developing an addiction. No one chooses to develop this disease. Research has shown that addiction is not a matter or moral character, willpower or individual strength. Instead, it is a matter of how the brain is wired.

Long-term use of alcohol and other drugs changes the brain. Substance abuse increases the release of chemicals called dopamine. Overtime, if the levels of dopamine are consistently high, the brain attempts to balance things out by producing less dopamine. Now the brain has to rely on substances to release the dopamine. This is when individuals start to use alcohol or drugs just to feel normal again.

Addiction to alcohol or other drugs leads to negative consequences in almost every area of life including; social, emotional, financial, legal, family, school, physical health and employment. Knowing the signs and symptoms of addiction can prompt earlier intervention and better outcomes.

Behavioral Signs and Symptoms of Substance Use Disorder

  • Always uses substance to intoxication
  • Uses substances at inappropriate times such as before driving, at work or at school
  • Damages relationships
  • Poor performance and attendance at school or work
  • Steals, borrows money from work, family, friends
  • Secretive, defensive behavior about activities or possessions
  • Unusual mood changes
  • Changes in eating and sleeping habits
  • Changes in peer group or social group
  • Loss of interest in usual activities and hobbies
  • Aggressive or physical behavior
  • Money or valuables missing from home
  • Legal issues

Physical Signs and Symptoms of Substance Use Disorder

  • Rapid weight loss or gain
  • Slow or staggering walk
  • Inability to sleep or awake at unusual times
  • Glazed or red eyes
  • Pupils larger or smaller than usual, blank stare
  • Cold, sweaty palms or shaky hands
  • Extreme hyperactivity, excessive talking
  • Needle marks in lower arm, leg or bottom of feet
  • Nausea, vomiting or excessive sweating
  • Low or no energy
  • Depressed or anxious
  • Deterioration of personal appearance and hygiene

Here at New Beginnings Lake Charles, we treat the symptoms that result in the behaviors that deteriorates the addicted persons quality of life. When the triggers that cause the behavior are identified and treated with a program of therapy, the one struggling with a substance use disorder will have the tools to heal emotionally. A happier and fulfilling life lies in the future. At New Beginnings Lake Charles it is our goal to make that life a reality!

Our professional staff is able to effectively assess and screen for substance use disorders. A professional assessment is the best way to clinically assess the problem, establish facts and determine what level of care is the best to start living clean and sober.

See Admissions Assessment for more information or call 877.855.9773 to speak with one of our Admissions Specialists to schedule a confidential assessment today.