Drugs and alcohol have been always been part of society. Recreational use may be frowned on by many, but the fact is that it exists. Occasional use of drugs and alcohol may not be healthy, but the real damage occurs when abuse sets in. When drugs or alcohol interfere with normal activities, there is a problem that needs to
be dealt with.
How Can I Tell if I Have a Problem with Drugs or Alcohol?
Drug and alcohol problems can affect every one of us regardless of age, sex, race, marital status, place of residence, income level, or lifestyle. Denial is a big part of addiction and with recreational use of drugs and alcohol, it isn't too hard to ignore the effects of problem drinking or drug use. There are some tell tale signs that should wake you up if you see them.
You may have a problem with drugs or alcohol, if:
You can't predict whether or not you will use drugs or get drunk.
You believe that in order to have fun you need to drink and/or use drugs.
You turn to alcohol and/or drugs after a confrontation or argument, or to relieve uncomfortable feelings.
You drink more or use more drugs to get the same effect that you got with smaller amounts.
You drink and/or use drugs alone.
You remember how last night began, but not how it ended, so you're worried you may have a problem.
You have trouble at work or in school because of your drinking or drug use.
You make promises to yourself or others that you'll stop getting drunk or using drugs.
You feel alone, scared, miserable, and depressed.
If you have experienced any of the above problems, take heart, there is hope and help is available. Millions of people just like you have taken charge of their actions and are living healthy, alcohol and drug-free lives.
How Can I Get Help?
You can get help for yourself or for a friend
or loved one from numerous national, state, and local organizations, treatment centers, referral centers, and hotlines throughout the country. There are various kinds of treatment services and centers. For example, some may involve outpatient counseling, while others may be 3 to 5 week inpatient rehabilitation programs.
While you or your friend or loved one may be hesitant to seek help, know that treatment programs offer organized and structured services with individual, group, and family therapy for people with alcohol and drug abuse problems. Research shows that when appropriate treatment is given, and when clients follow their prescribed program, treatment can work.
By reducing alcohol and/or drug abuse, treatment reduces costs to society in terms of medical care, law enforcement, and crime. Treatment can help keep you and your loved ones together. More importantly, treatment can help you live the life you want to live and achieve the goals you set for yourself.
Remember, some people may go through treatment a number of times before they are in full recovery. Do not give up hope if you backslide. It isn't easy to overcome a substance
abuse habit, but it can be done. You can do it.
Each community has its own resources. Some common referral sources that are often listed in the phone book are:
Community Drug Hotlines
Emergency Health Clinics, or Community Treatment Services
Alcoholics Anonymous, Narcotics Anonymous, or Al-Anon/Alateen
See below for a referral list of additional resources and organizations in the USA: