There are several ways to tell if a loved one is suffering from drug addiction. It is not likely that you will see them taking drugs, but you will be able to tell by how they act or by what they do. More often than not, friends and family will notice changes in the behaviour in their friend or family member. Someone who is normally outgoing and bubbly may become quiet and much more recluse if they're under the influence of drugs.


Addiction Requires Treatment

It's important to get them treatment and the sooner, the better. There are several different options available for opioid treatment. There's rapid detox, medically assisted detox, methadone detox, and heroin detox. The type and severity of the addiction will decipher which treatment option will be used. 

Opioid dependence is somewhat complicated. It affects different people in different ways, and there are varying levels of dependence. It is necessary and vital to have the help of professionals to come up with a tailored treatment plan as well as to supervise the recovery process.

Forced isolation from Covid-19 has spiked alcohol and opioid consumption. This increased use is adding pressure on the already strained health care and treatment industry providing mental health and substance use disorder services.

The Signs of Addiction

There are several things to look out for if you suspect that someone you know and love is struggling with an addiction. You don't want to assume right away that someone you know is taking drugs but if they show enough of the signs and symptoms of drug abuse you should try to help them to get the support that they need.

Some of the signs may indicate that someone is under the influence of drugs could include red eyes or enlarged pupils, apathy toward others or life in general, or a disinterest in the usual activities that they tend to do such as work or school. They may also be irritable, have anxiety or paranoia, or have mood swings. They may also have a runny nose or may have memory problems. In more severe case they may even be stealing and getting in trouble with the police. 

You should also be aware of who they are hanging around with. Those under the influence of drugs or alcohol tend to hang out with a "bad" crowd. This crowd may consist of people who are living a party lifestyle or that are also doing drugs. Although many of these signs may be a telltale sign that someone you know is struggling with substance abuse, you should never assume that they are a drug user

There could be another issue that you don't know about, such as insomnia, extra stress in their life, or being overworked. If you have any concerns, you should simply keep an eye on your loved one or friend. 

Avoid Confrontation

It's normally best to avoid bluntly confronting them or confrontation them out of the blue because they can end up getting defensive and may even get angry. It's a bit of an awkward situation, but it does need to be done for the sake of your relationship and your friend. There are a few steps that you can follow to make the confrontation more effective and less awkward. 

You need to mentally prepare yourself for the "talk" so it is a good idea to have a few points in mind that you want to touch on when you get the chance to talk with them. You should have a plan and know what you are going to say. Whatever you decide to say, it should be focused on the well-being of the person you are talking to. Let them know that you care about them and that you want what's best for them. 

Tell them your concerns and the reasons why you feel that you need to talk to them. You also need to be understanding and to refrain from getting angry even though you may feel frustrated with some of their behaviours of or actions. They should also be sober when you talk to them so that they will listen better and be able to understand fully what it is that you're trying to tell them. 

Opioid Addiction, Dependence, and Tolerance

There is what is known as opioid tolerance, which is when someone takes higher doses to get the same high as when they began taking opioids because their body needs more to deliver the desired "high." 

Opioid dependence is a disorder that is caused by brain chemicals that are dependent on opioids to avoid withdrawal symptoms. Opioid addiction is the uncontrollable need for opioids and an addict with an addiction will stop at nothing to get their "fix" even if it is affecting them negatively. In other words, they cannot stop taking opioids, and they are, in a sense, running their life.