Author: Gary Jackson

Drug addiction substance use disorder Diagnosis and treatment

A lack or disruption in a person’s social support system can lead to substance or behavioral addiction. Traumatic experiences that affect coping abilities can also lead to addictive behaviors. Overcoming an SUD is not as simple as resisting the temptation to take drugs. Like many other chronic conditions, treatment is available for substance use disorders. While no single treatment method is right for everyone, recovery is possible, and help is available for patients with SUDs.

  • Overcoming an SUD is not as simple as resisting the temptation to take drugs.
  • Much of your time may have been spent thinking about the drug, seeking it out, using, and recovering.
  • Drug addiction is dangerous because it becomes all-consuming and disrupts the normal functioning of your brain and body.
  • The frontal lobe allows a person to delay feelings of reward or gratification.
  • When tapering off of the substance, you can experience painful withdrawal symptoms.
  • Serious complications can cause health concerns or social situations to result in the end of a life.

While a person is free to say anything they want during an intervention, it’s best to be prepared with a plan to keep things positive and on track. Blaming, accusing, causing guilt, threatening, or arguing isn’t helpful. You may also want to consider if anyone in the list of friends and family should not be included.

How are addictions diagnosed?

Medicines don’t cure your opioid addiction, but they can help in your recovery. These medicines can reduce your craving for opioids and may help you avoid relapse. Medicine treatment options for opioid addiction may include buprenorphine, methadone, naltrexone, and a combination of buprenorphine and naloxone. Diagnosing drug addiction (substance use disorder) requires a thorough evaluation and often includes an assessment by a psychiatrist, a psychologist, or a licensed alcohol and drug counselor. Blood, urine or other lab tests are used to assess drug use, but they’re not a diagnostic test for addiction. However, these tests may be used for monitoring treatment and recovery.

addiction treatment

Find Support is an online guide that helps people navigate through common questions when they are at the start of their journey to better behavioral health. Since the COVID-19 pandemic, these groups that were often out of reach to many are now available online around the clock through video meetings. Such groups are not considered part of a formal treatment plan, but they are considered as useful in conjunction with professional treatment. Still, some research indicates that it may improve symptoms of PTSD to a greater degree than those of SUD. Plus, it may be most effective when combined with other treatment options. The fundamental principle of the program is the belief that combining treatment for co-occurring PTSD and SUDs is more effective and yields better results than treating each disorder separately.

Can I prevent developing an addiction?

For many people, substance or alcohol use was a way to self-medicate for depression, anxiety, or another mental health condition. For others, perhaps it began as a way to stay motivated during long hours of working or studying. Healthcare providers and the medical community now call substance addiction substance use disorder. The American Psychiatric Association’s Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM-5) has concrete diagnostic criteria for substance use disorders. If someone you love is experiencing a substance use disorder, please bear in mind that they have a chronic illness and need support and help.

SUD affects the parts of the brain involved in reward and motivation, learning and memory, and control over behavior. Without treatment, addiction can cause serious health issues, even death. It can damage personal relationships, lead to financial difficulties and cause legal problems.