DRUG addiction affects people from all walks of life, regardless of age, gender, race, occupation, or socioeconomic status. Initially, most people begin to use drugs to cope up with stress or pain. This may be due to family problems, peer pressure or economic issues.
In my research about drug addiction, dependency and tolerance can develop fast before the substance abuser can realized he is already hooked into drugs. And that it is the craving which is the intense obsession to use drug, which is so difficult to deal. Worst is that, some may decide to stop now and then tomorrow they begin again. Drug addiction is indeed a major problem, an illness not easily intervened.
Saying no to drugs indeed is a choice and sobriety is like an impossible goal. But hope is not out of reach, if you accept that you need help because it is difficult to do it alone. Hence, if you or a family member is hooked on drugs, it is best to ask for outside help immediately. But where does it all begin?
The toughest step to recovery is to accept that you are addicted to drugs and decide to make a change. So how do you recognize if you are abusing drugs?
Physical symptoms include bloodshot or glazed eyes, dilated or constricted pupils, abrupt weight changes, bruises, infections, or other physical signs at the drug entrance site on the body, self-care deficit and slurred speech. While behavioral or psychological symptoms may include: acting secretive and paranoid, believing they cannot function in life without drugs, consistent borrowing of money or stealing to buy drugs, changes in daily activities, poor performance in school, unusual mood swings, social isolation, loss of focus and concentration, demotivated and lethargic, neglecting responsibilities and sudden attitude of change.
What about the worst case scenarios in drug addiction? Harmful health effects of drug abuse may include: aggression, anxiety, depression, Human Immunodeficiency Virus-Acquired Immunodeficiency Syndrome, hormone imbalance, memory loss, mood swings, prenatal or fertility issues, psychosis and organ damage. Of course, the critical health consequence is death due to overdose or etc.
Now that you are informed or re-educated about how drugs can damage one’s life. I guess it is now the right time for you to decide to leave a clean life. I am sure it is not easy and it is hard to trust anyone about your situation.
But it is important not to feel stigmatized, if you feel that you are abusing drugs and you can no longer quit. Remember that you are not the only person experiencing this. So, for those who may be addicted to illegal drugs and for families who may need to find out more about addiction, rehabilitation and other care options, don’t lose hope, but make your life healthier and better. Trust the Ateneo de Davao University-Drug Hotline/Referral Helpline. Calls here are private and confidential and you do not have to provide personal information.
Call (082) 298- 6728, 298-6729
Sun- 0943 -494-4211