Are you pondering whether or not you need to seek help for substance abuse or a mental health issue? If so, we here at Brookhaven Retreat understand your confusion and want to help.
Of course, if you are asking yourself this question, it’s a good sign you could benefit from a substance abuse program. However, there are also many other indications it’s time for you to seek treatment at a mental health and substance abuse treatment center.
Do I Need Rehab? 12 Signs Treatment May Be in Order
Please read through the following 12 signs to see if any apply to you:
1) You Have Mental Health Issues and Are Using Substances to Self-Medicate
It’s very common for people who are living with behavioral or mental health issues to use alcohol or drugs to help deal with their upsetting symptoms. If you’re wondering if you need rehab because you are self-medicating to cope with a mental health issue, it’s important to understand how and why this self-medication could impact your future.
- Why this behavior poses a problem. Taking drugs or drinking alcohol can bring you some temporary relief, but it’s never an answer to your issue. This is because when you sober up, your underlying condition will still be there. It could also even be exacerbated by what you’re taking in an attempt to control it.
- How it can affect your life if it’s left untreated. If you self-medicate with alcohol to treat a mental health issue like depression, this only makes your symptoms worse, as alcohol is a known depressant. To alleviate your symptoms, it’s likely you’ll drink more, putting yourself in a vicious cycle that’s difficult to escape. Instead, what you actually need is depression treatment to get help for the issue rather than masking the symptoms.
Living with a behavioral or mental illness along with an addiction is known as a co-occurring disorder or a dual diagnosis, and both conditions must be treated for you to effectively recover.
2) You’ve Tried to Kick Your Habit and Have Been Unsuccessful
There are millions of Americans who suffer from addiction to drugs or alcohol, and maybe they have tried to but were unsuccessful. Trying to kick your habit, even though you’re suffering negative consequences, can be nearly impossible to do so alone, and even more so if you're confronting a mental health disorder along with an addiction. It can also be dangerous.
Why this behavior poses a problem. You may have found that you stop using for a few days and then go on a huge binge; depending on what you’ve been taking, it could be physically dangerous to quit alone. Through getting into rehab, you have the expert medical support and help you need to kick your habit and move forward from alcohol or drugs.
These are a few examples of drugs you should not try quitting alone:
- How it could affect your life if left untreated. You need to quit alcohol or drugs to get your life back on track. Checking into a private mental health treatment program could change your life completely, giving you renewed hope, focus and support.
3) You Lie About Your Level of Drug or Alcohol Use.
If you are using drugs or are consuming so many alcoholic drinks that you feel the need to lie about it, you know you’ve got a problem.
If you’re comfortable in terms of how much you’re using a substance, you shouldn’t have an issue with talking to friends and family about the amount you take. On the flip side, if you’re not being truthful about your use or are hiding it, you know immediately that you have a substance abuse or addiction issue.
- Why this behavior poses a problem. It’s never a good idea to be untruthful with the ones you love as they’ll lose their trust in you. Lying about your substance use can also create a whole host of other issues you may not have considered, such as financial or employment trouble.
- How it can affect your life if it’s left untreated. In addition to people losing their trust in you, you might also begin to lie to your physician to get more of your prescription medications. You may even try doctor shopping to obtain multiple prescriptions. You’ll also come across to your family and friends as being untrustworthy. This damages your relationships and creates a divide that may take years to fix.
4) You Use on Your Own
If you find yourself regularly drinking on your own, for example, it’s a sign that drinking has become a part of your lifestyle rather than an occasional recreational or social activity. Similarly, if you tend not to be able to face the day without first having a drink, this should set your alarm bells ringing. Drinking in particular is a very social habit, but when it crosses the line of consistently drinking alone, it’s an indication you are abusing alcohol or have an alcohol addiction.
- Why this behavior poses a problem. These behaviors point to your substance use being out of control, and they are often a sign of being caught up in an addiction. Drinking tends to be a social activity, if you find yourself drinking in excess on your own you are probably using it more for coping purposes.
- How it can affect your life if it’s left untreated. If you don’t seek treatment even though your use has begun to control you, you’re running the risk of cutting yourself off from friends and family. You also risk being consumed by your need to take your substance of choice as often as you can, no matter the outcome.
In the worst-case scenario, you’ll lose your friends, family, job and potentially even your life. Substance abuse treatment programs are designed to treat you as an individual, so if you need help, it is time to seek it out.
5) You Only Go to Places Where Alcohol or Drugs Are Available
Perhaps you’re avoiding visiting your family as you know you won’t be able to use heroin or take pills. Maybe you chose not to attend your child’s school play as there’s no alcohol available backstage afterwards. If you can identify with either of the above, it’s time to seek help without delay. Once whether being able to use or drink becomes a principal consideration in where you go, when you decide to go out, whom you see and how long you are away from your substance of choice, you’re living with an addiction.
- Why this behavior poses a problem. You’ll gradually find you’re losing touch with everything and everyone you once held dear. It’s also likely that as you use more and more, you need higher quantities to achieve the same effect.
- How it can affect your life if left untreated. When you refuse to go any place that doesn’t have your drug of choice available, it significantly limits where you can go and what else you can do with your life. By this stage, you have become obsessed with drinking alcohol or taking drugs, and you spend the majority of your days focusing on where to get your next fix. Inpatient rehabilitation centers will equip you with all the tools you need to kick your habit, and to live a more fulfilling life.
6) You Experience Blackouts
If you’re at the stage where you lose your memory of what happened during the time you were under the effects of drugs or alcohol and other people are filling you in on what transpired, this is a sure sign you need to seek help.
- Why this behavior poses a problem. When you don’t have your wits about you, you can get into some potentially dangerous situations. You might take risks you wouldn’t normally take without the effects of the addictive substance.
- How it can affect your life is left untreated. If you’re finding you’re having issues with a foggy memory or that you’re blacking out on a regular basis, you’re in no state to look after yourself and can potentially injure yourself or someone else. You’re also easy pickings for an opportunist criminal.
7) You’re Involved in Risky Behaviors
If you regularly wake up in the morning wondering why on earth you did something the night before that you would never even think of doing while sober, it is another sign your substance use could be out of control.
- Why this behavior poses a problem. If you don’t understand why you made the choices you made and you’ve done things you’d never even normally consider doing if you weren’t under the influence at the time, you may find yourself in real trouble.
- How it could affect your life if untreated. Perhaps you’ve done something illegal while high. You might have gone to a very unsafe area to secure your drug of choice, or you’ve been spending time with the wrong crowd. Maybe you’ve been involved in some risky sexual behavior.
Any of the above can mean you get yourself into trouble with the law, could become a victim of violence or could end up contracting a STD. If this is the case, it is time to refocus your life and your priorities.
8) Your Doctor Has Advised You to Seek Treatment
Has your family doctor advised you that it might be a good idea to get treatment? If you’ve ever spoken to your doctor about your habit and have been entirely truthful with them, their advice is a good gauge of whether or not you have an addiction. Regular checkups with your doctor are something that can often fall by the wayside when you’re experiencing alcohol or drug addiction. However, this is when you most need your doctor’s help and guidance.
- Why this behavior poses a problem. If your doctor is worried about your lifestyle and you don’t do anything about it, you’re avoiding an issue that’s not going to go away by itself.
- • How it could affect your life if left untreated. There are various ways that an untreated addiction to drugs or alcohol can affect you when you’re caught in its grip. Long-term addiction causes chemical systems in your brain to change, and this can affect:
In addition, an addiction poses many other physical health conditions that can be long-term and even life threatening, depending on the substance.
9) Your Family and Friends Stage an Intervention
It can be incredibly embarrassing and demoralizing when your loved ones stage an intervention for either your mental health issues or substance abuse. This is a face-to face and carefully planned process that may be done in consultation with a drug or alcohol counselor, or it can sometimes be directed by an intervention professional. This can also involve co-workers and others who care about you deeply.
We know that being the subject of an intervention can be difficult. However, it is done out of love and concern for you. During the intervention, your loved ones gather together to confront you about your addiction or mental health issues and to ask you to get into treatment.
Generally speaking, the intervention:
- Gives specific examples of any destructive behaviors you’ve been exhibiting and illustrates their impact on those around you.
- Sets out a prearranged plan of treatment with clear guidelines, goals and steps.
- • Spells out what every one of the people present will do if you refuse to accept treatment.
An intervention uses tough love to get you to stop your destructive behaviors. It is often a last resort for your loved ones, and if those closest to you have staged one, you know you have to get help.
Why this behavior poses a problem. Your relatives are obviously very concerned about your behavior to go as far as staging and intervention. They’ll have had so many sleepless nights of worry, and they just want the best for you. They would love for you to be back to your old, healthy, addiction-free self.
It is difficult to admit to yourself, never mind to anyone else, that you have a drug addiction. However, it is the first step on the road back to health and happiness.
How it could affect your life if left untreated. It may not feel like it when you are the subject of an intervention, but it is a very loving, caring and potentially successful way to help you recognize that you need help for your drug or alcohol habit. If you choose not to accept help even though your loved ones have identified a need for it, you will end up getting deeper in the cycle of addiction. As time goes by, it will be even more difficult to escape.
As well as the above, your family will no longer enable your habit. They will do this by no longer:
- Paying your rent.
- Paying your bills.
- Letting you live with them.
- Giving you money.
- Buying you groceries.
- Driving you places and picking you up.
- Making excuses to your employer when you don’t turn up for work.
- Paying your attorney when you are in trouble.
- Paying bail for you if you end up in jail.
10) You Hide the Evidence of Your Habit from Those Around You
If you feel that your substance abuse is out of control, you may try to hide the evidence of what you’re doing from those around you. If you’re drinking too much, you might go out on random trips to the store just to buy more. You may drink late at night after your family has retired to bed, and then you may hide the empties around your home for fear of them being found.
You also might stash a supply away in your bedroom, in your place of employment or in your car. The more dependent you become on drugs or alcohol, the greater lengths you may go to hide your activities.
- Why this behavior poses a problem. Hiding your habit from those closest to you drives a wedge between you over time. Also, there is always the potential that your loved ones will find all the hidden evidence of your use, and they may become angry and confused.
- How it could affect your life if left untreated. Using drugs or drinking alcohol in secret alienates you from those who love you most. It makes you lead a secret double life, and this is an aspect of addiction that makes you feel alone and misunderstood. If you find you feel that way and you are hiding your substance use, it’s a sure sign that rehab can genuinely help you.
11) People Close to You Have Spoken to You About Getting Help
When your loved ones show concern and speak to you about your substance abuse habit or your mental health, it’s a sure sign you need to get some help. There are a few people who might take the lead in terms of this:
Usually, the first person who may speak with you about your drug use or drinking spiraling out of control is your partner. It’s no wonder, as this is the person closest to you, and they’ve probably noticed by now that you’ve undergone a whole host of changes. These may include:
- Spending far less time with them.
- Suffering strong mood swings.
- Behaving secretively.
- Distancing yourself from them.
- Neglecting your personal hygiene.
- Neglecting your old friends and family.
- Spending time with new people.
- Seeming like a stranger.
If your addiction is making you miss work or underperform, you may be called into your boss’s office to discuss these issues. When you reach this stage, it is a huge indication that you need to get yourself into rehab. Being honest and open with your employer also means they will be more likely to be understanding, to show compassion, and to work with you.
Your Friends and Family
It is likely that you’re spending far less time with people you used to love being around. If your friends and family are commenting on this behavior, it is a danger sign you need to take notice of.
- Why this behavior poses a problem. If you’re so heavily addicted that people need to talk with you about their fears and worries for you, they are incredibly concerned about your health and well-being. You might also find that tempers get heated on both sides when your loved ones approach you about your habit. This can cause damage to relationships.
- How it could affect your life if left untreated. If your loved ones have spoken to you about their concerns and you have ignored their advice, it can fracture your relationships. It can also prompt you to take even more of your substance of choice to escape some difficult emotions and realities.
12) You are Facing Charges for Driving Under the Influence of Alcohol or Drugs
If you have found yourself getting arrested for either driving while intoxicated or driving under the influence of drugs, your situation has gone from worrying to very serious. In addition, it is impossible to hide your habit from your loved ones when things get to this stage. You can no longer pretend you don’t have a problem.
- Why this behavior poses a problem. There are many costs associated with DUI and WI charges in addition to the damage it can do to your reputation and relationships. For instance, you might need to pay bail fees, court costs, attorney fees and towing or impounding fees for your car. In addition, you may be ordered to attend a drunk driving education program, which can also be costly and time consuming.
- How it could affect your life if left untreated. If you consistently drive while drunk or high, you could kill someone or end up killing yourself. Also, if you're caught, you may lose your license, and this can be a particular challenge if you need your car for work purposes. You could even end up going to jail for your mistake. If you have found yourself driving while drunk or high, you need to seek help.
Get the Substance Abuse or Emotional, Mood and Mental Health Disorders Help You Need at Brookhaven Retreat
If you’ve recognized any of the above signs relating to either your mental or emotional health or substance abuse, know that here at Brookhaven Retreat, we offer a voluntary program to help women manage alcohol and substance abuse challenges, emotional trauma, depression, anxiety, mood disorders and more.
Whether you feel it is time to get help for the depression or anxiety that causes you to use drugs or alcohol, or you’ve spotted some signs you drink too much and want to address them now before things get worse, there’s help out there. All you need to do is pick up the phone and ask for it. We are here for you. Contact us at Brookhaven Retreat today.