Rose was a young intern at a financial agency. This was her first experience of working in corporate sector and she was pretty excited. She adjusted to the work culture soon and performed well to gain rewards and promotion. Long hours of work would often end with a glass of wine or two with her colleagues at a club or a café.
Soon, the occasional drinking sessions became regular as it made her feel happy and relaxed. Slowly, she got addicted. She needed alcohol to relieve her tense muscles and prepare her for the next day. As the work pressure increased, she started binge drinking. This resulted in night outs, hangovers, absence from work and the day came when she was fired. Her addiction cost her the job she loved and was so proud of.
Like Rose, many of us develop liking for something that causes more harm than benefit. One could be addicted to alcohol, drugs, sex, video games, gambling or even shopping. And when the matter goes out of hand, a person has to be encouraged to seek help from an addiction help center that treats the underlying problem in a holistic manner during recovery as well as through an aftercare program.
It is possible to control the situation and prevent it from worsening. All one needs is to watch out for the signs that signal an addiction and take action immediately. Some of the red flags could be:
- Continuing an addiction despite negative effects – When an addiction takes over, the affected person has the tendency to ignore the red flags and continue pursuing the substance or a habit regardless of the impact it might have on physical and psychological health, relationships or job.
- Quitting social events – Those addicted could become so obsessed with their addiction that over time, they may quit attending social gatherings they liked before as the events may not give them the opportunity or time to use their substance of abuse.
- Suffering from withdrawal symptoms – When a person tries to quit addiction, he/she may suffer from severe withdrawal symptoms. This is because the body gets so used to a substance that it gets distressed in its absence. The withdrawal symptoms could be physical as well as psychological, and in some case life-threatening too.
- Keeping addiction a secret – People tend to mask addiction by keeping it a secret. They fear being judged, so they try to hide their habit from friends and family.
- Increasing tolerance – When an addiction develops, over time, the body starts getting used to it and to produce the same high, it needs more amount of the substance, leading to tolerance. Addiction can take over mind and body completely.
- Not being able to stop – Addiction can be so overpowering that despite the best of intentions, a person is just not able to quit or taper off. One loses self-control and allows himself/herself to be swayed by it.
- Taking risks – An addicted brain has a tendency to take risks. Under the influence of a substance, one might lose his or her guard and indulge in risk-taking behavior. An addicted person might steal something, indulge in unsafe sexual practices, drive under the influence or pick up fights and get abusive.
- Making excuses – When a person develops an addiction, his/her life becomes a web of lies and excuses. When friends and loved ones express concern, he/she may resort to all the means to evade them and shut himself/herself in their own world.
Seek help before it’s late
Fortunately, it is possible to deal with alcohol or drug addiction if one agrees that he or she has a problem and is willing to take help for the same. Delaying the matter will worsen health and diminish chances of full recovery.