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Signs and Symptoms of Drug Addiction

Recognising the signs and symptoms of drug addiction is important. Be aware, to understand the necessity of professional support, available here at Addiction Advocates. Enquire Now
Further Information
Signs and Symptoms of Drug Addiction
Updated on 17/09/2021
Medically reviewed by
Dr Alexander Lapa (Psychiatrist)

Consistent, strong, and impactful consumption of drugs is a clear indication that a behavioural habit is amounting. Whether such consumption levels reflect your exposure to drugs or that of a loved one, being aware of the severity of the addiction is very important.

A substance use disorder can turn into a physical and psychological addiction, no matter its cause, no matter its visibility and no matter its infancy. Displayed through a range of signs and symptoms, focusing on evidential changes to health, outlooks, and behaviours, recognising such changes will be necessary to gauge the severity of consumption.

Drug addiction is treatable yet will require a focused approach of comprehensive treatment and therapy. The degree of comprehensives will depend on the severity and magnitude of addiction, defined through diagnosis.

Therefore, recognising the signs and symptoms of drug addiction at infancy will reduce the need for intensive intervention, possibly treated via rehab. However, here at Addiction Advocates, we appreciate how tough it can be to step back, assess consumption and reach out for support.

We are here to guide you, increase your awareness of recognisable signs and symptoms, and offer direction towards addiction treatment and recovery. Being aware of addiction and its signs can benefit both you and those around you. Potentially reducing the seriousness of abuse and damage, be in tune with the signs and symptoms of drug addiction.

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Recognising the signs of substance use disorder

Signs and Symptoms of Drug Addiction

The consumption of drugs, whether prescription based or illicit, can begin through recreational or recommended rates yet can quickly develop into compulsive and involuntary exposure. Due to the addictive traits found within many drugs, along with the position that their effects hold within the internal reward system, mere consumption can quickly escalate.

Being aware of and recognising the signs of a substance use disorder can help to slow down this process, can help to reduce the effectiveness of drugs, and suppress the damages of addiction.

An addiction can damage relationships, place severe pressure on health and well-being, resulting in financial implications, and suppress quality of life. Such effects are linked to an uncontrollable bout of addiction, which has been untreated, misunderstood or judged, beyond its brain condition status.

Treating addiction can significantly reduce such damages, highlighting the benefits of a swift and sustainable recovery process. Understandably this isn’t the reality for all individuals, as addiction is complex and deceiving. Yet through recognising the signs and symptoms of drug addiction, greater control is likely, helping to increase commitment and acceptance of support.

Signs and symptoms of drug addiction

Signs someone you love has a drug addiction, or yourself for that matter, will fluctuate from the norm, depending on personal response to drugs, the drug that’s been consumed, existing physical and psychological health, and the degree of addiction, signs and symptoms can fluctuate in degree and form.

Yet, physical, psychological, and behavioural signs indicate a noticeable change due to increased or consistent drug exposure. Such changes stand as an indication of illness through a possible addiction diagnosis.

Signs and symptoms of drug addiction include:


  • Increased health concerns
  • Symptoms that reflect an ongoing hangover, such as lethargy and cravings
  • Effects on sleep, energy levels and overall wellbeing
  • A disinterest in health, even throughout the consequences of drug addiction
  • Physical signs of drug abuse, such as injection sites, damages to teeth or cardiovascular vulnerabilities
  • A display of withdrawal symptoms
  • Increased consumption of drugs


Rehab Questions

  • Cognitive impairments, such as memory loss and poor concentration
  • Symptoms of mental health issues, such as depression
  • A roller-coaster of emotions
  • Low self-esteem and worth
  • Extreme mood swings
  • Irritability and agitation
  • Poor decision making
  • Defensiveness


  • Disinterest in hobbies, relationships, and responsibilities
  • The need to increase drug consumption
  • Changes in friendship groups
  • Diminished performance through work and everyday life
  • Withdrawal from routine
  • Ongoing consumption even through experiences of negative consequences
  • Doing whatever it takes to access drugs
  • Hiding drug abuse
  • Partaking in criminal activities to fuel consumption
  • Seeing drugs as a necessity

Justifiably, the signs and symptoms of drug addiction will fluctuate, all depending on the drug that’s been consumed, its effects and personal metabolism. However, the consensus will include some of the above changes, increasing negativity through physical, psychological and/or behavioural adaptations.

Risks of undiagnosed drug addiction

Therapy for Addiction

Overlooking clear signs and symptoms of addiction will result in an undiagnosed condition, increasing the risks of denial and self-sabotage. Although it can be scary to approach the possibility of drug addiction, the dangers of drug addiction for the long term are much more daunting and life-threatening.

Drug addiction can place significant pressure on health, it can amount to a dual diagnosis, it can damage vital organs and their functionality, it can unravel career credibility and accreditations, it can break down relationships, it can increase crime rates, and it can overtake the entirety of life.

Enabling ongoing exposure will increase the above risks, making it difficult to break away and forget about the consequences of addiction. Yet sourcing treatment and intervention can help to reduce such risks through sustainable rehabilitation slowly.

Treatment and therapies of addiction

Addiction Support

Treatment and therapy will be recommended to overcome drug addiction. Working through a comprehensive rehab process of detoxification, therapy, relapse prevention and aftercare, treatment programmes can recover even complex diagnoses.

Considering the signs and symptoms of addiction, we will assess your responses to drugs to advance a suitable admissions process through our services. From here, a private, confidential, and effective rehab process can be worked through, if accepted, to treat the cause, the symptoms, and the impacts of addiction.

Recognising the signs and symptoms of drug addiction will provide awareness and understanding of when support, such as ours, is recommended. Consumption can quickly escalate, supporting the necessity of awareness. At Addiction Advocates, we’re here to offer practical support and treatment through addiction recovery.

Frequently Asked Questions

What are the treatments available for drug addiction?
Available treatments through drug rehab focus on physical and psychological addiction recovery. Detoxification, therapy, cognitive behavioural therapy, relapse prevention and stress management are the most recommended options for their suitability.
What causes drug addiction?
Drug addiction can amount to a number of complex reasons. Most develop through physical, psychological, social, or environmental influences, which can be anything from genetics and mental health vulnerabilities to toxic relationships. Once the effects of drugs are encountered, impacting the reward system, an addiction can develop through the ongoing necessity of habitual consumption.
Can I detox from drugs at home?
Detoxing from drugs will be encouraged from a rehab clinic, available on a medical basis. This is down to the invasiveness of drug abuse, and how severe withdrawal symptoms can become. Medical detoxification will reduce such severity while increasing the rates of sobriety.

Seth is an author, addiction recovery expert and fully accredited member of the national counselling society. He has experience working with a wide range of addictions and mental illnesses using a number of evidence-based therapies and programmes such as the SMART models of addiction recovery.

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Really enjoyed my time at Asana lodge. Staff are great and most have previous experience of the afflictions that affect all the clients, so they can relate to the situation you are in. I feel ready now to tackle the outside world with all the skills I have learnt.
Thank you to all the staff at asana lodge from management to the cleaners, everyone made me feel so welcome and really went above and beyond to help me in my recovery. highly recommend anyone seeking help with addiction depression and anxiety to go to asana lodge and heal your mind body and soul.
Everyone at Cassiobury court have been very supportive with my recovery and I have learnt a lot over the past 14 days. I am taking away some good tools to help me with my addiction. I look forward to seeing the piers at the aftercare service.
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This is done to assess what sort of help is needed so we can recommend an addiction treatment service that can provide the best help possible. All calls are strictly confidential and are carried out by a trained healthcare professional.…

This is done to assess what sort of help is needed so we can recommend an addiction treatment service that can provide the best help possible.

All calls are strictly confidential and are carried out by a trained healthcare professional.

No obligation recommendations are made after a full assessment of yourself or loved ones situation is fully made.

Recommendations include specialist addiction treatment programmes in CQC regulated facilities based throughout the UK.

If you are unable to afford private treatment then public healthcare and charities would also be recommended to you.

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We have a large number of helpful services available to help give you the best possible support when it comes to dealing with addiction. Just some of the services we can offer includes: Free confidential telephone assessment Recommending CQC regulated…

We have a large number of helpful services available to help give you the best possible support when it comes to dealing with addiction.

Just some of the services we can offer includes:

  • Free confidential telephone assessment
  • Recommending CQC regulated residential addiction treatment providers
  • Arranging for an intervention, if needed
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Why Choose Us?

We can help take the stress out of finding an addiction treatment provider by recommending only the best options available that fully suits your criteria. The help and advice we can provide includes making sure that your journey towards recovery…

We can help take the stress out of finding an addiction treatment provider by recommending only the best options available that fully suits your criteria.

The help and advice we can provide includes making sure that your journey towards recovery is one that can definitely be achieved.

Taking the step towards recovery can be incredibly tough but we are here to put your concerns at ease by giving you insights into the safety of undertaking residential addiction treatment and how it can put you on the path towards long lasting recovery from addiction.

Our team of advisors have extensive experience and knowledge about the subject of addiction and the treatment provided so if you have any questions then they will be more than happy to help.

Get started today by calling our friendly team today on 0800 012 6088.

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