Substance abuse. Substance use disorder. Addiction. Partying. Experimentation. There are almost as many ways to describe drug use as there are drugs themselves. Understanding whether you need help for your drug use begins with understanding the differences between the different types of use — and when it becomes a real problem.
Drug Abuse vs. Substance Use Disorder
Drug abuse is not a medical diagnosis, but it is harmful. No matter how much you use drugs, you’re messing up your body and your life on some level.
People abusing substances experience tons of issues at work, home, and school. Relationships get screwed up because of the drugs — not to mention, your credit!
Still, having a problem with drug abuse doesn’t necessarily mean that it’s crossed over into a full addiction, which is a diagnosable disease. Addiction includes a physical and psychological component that’s not present in general misuse.
Signs of addiction are obvious:
You start jonesing for your next high as soon as the effects of your last one start to wear off, and you get withdrawal symptoms.
You can’t stop using, even though you want to.
You might be able to quit for a day or two, or more, before falling right back into addiction.
Whether you want to stop drug abuse or get freedom from addiction — or, if you’re not sure where you’re at — addiction treatment can help.
Anyone using drugs deserves an opportunity to stop.
The severity of your use and the nature of your addiction will help determine the treatment that is right for you. For example, people who have a severe addiction need to go through a safe and supportive detox before beginning the deeper work of residential treatment.
If you’re not sure whether you have a problem, check out our guide to rock bottom, below.
Getting Clean & Sober at Home
Today, more than 75% of hospitals and healthcare providers offer access to telehealth treatment, with 29 states having gone so far as to enact telehealth parity laws, which force insurance companies to reimburse patients for telehealth at the same rates as they would for in-person treatment.
If you’ve been thinking about getting clean and sober, or if you’ve been wanting to work on and strengthen the recovery you already have, it’s never been easier to do it through telehealth.