For the majority of people, the terms “addiction” and “substance abuse” are interchangeable. While it’s true that both of these terms relate to alcohol and drug use, they mean different things. Knowing the difference between these two terms can help individuals better recognize drug problems. In turn, this makes it easier to get help for yourself or a loved one.
What Is Substance Abuse?
Medical professionals use the term substance abuse to describe an individual who exhibits specific behaviors over a one-year span. Below are a few drug abuse symptoms that experts look for:
- Decline in school or work performance as a result of alcohol or drug abuse.
- Active display of reckless behavior. This includes putting their safety or the safety of others at risk while under the influence of alcohol of drugs.
- Legal problems that develop as a result of drug or alcohol abuse.
- Financial problems from spending all of their money on drugs.
- Continued use of drugs even after it causes a strain on relationships.
Drug abuse is a serious problem, but people who are in the drug abuse stage still have control over their condition. They have the ability to stop, but generally don’t want to. If they continue to abuse drugs, the behavior can lead to addiction.
What Is Drug Addiction?
Addiction differs from drug abuse in one very important way. Once an individual develops an addiction, he or she is no longer in control of drug use. When looking for signs of drug addiction, doctors first determine if their patients have developed a tolerance. The more that individuals use a certain drug, the higher their tolerance becomes.
People who suffer from addiction also have to deal with withdrawal symptoms when they try to stop taking drugs. This is because their bodies have developed a dependency on the drugs to function normally. As tolerance continues to increase, these individuals start to ingest large amounts, which increases the chance for overdose.
Addiction differs from substance abuse because, in the case of addiction, physical and psychological changes are present. Drugs leave people with a chemical imbalance in the brain. This makes it hard, if not impossible, for them to quit using drugs on their own. At this point, taking drugs is a reaction rather than a choice.
The Connection Between These Two Terms
While these terms are different, there’s still an important connection between them. Often times, substance abuse leads to addiction. Being able to spot the warning signs of drug abuse gives families a fighting chance to stop addiction before it happens.
It’s important for family members to keep in mind that simply pointing out drug abuse does little to stop it. Those with a problem need to be able to actually see what substance abuse is doing to their lives and the lives of their loved ones. Interventions are most effective at this stage.
Get Drug Rehab Services at Pinnacle Peak Recovery
Both substance abuse and addiction are matters that you should take seriously. Start by seeking drug rehab services at a facility that can provide you with the quality care that you deserve. At Pinnacle Peak Recovery, we offer a number of programs to help with rehabilitation, including
- Group therapy
- Inpatient treatment
- Outpatient treatment
- Individual therapy
- Dual diagnosis treatment
- Family therapy
- 12-step program
Using the above programs, we provide rehab support for a number of drugs. This includes heroin, meth, prescription drugs and much more. We take your safety and comfort very seriously during your stay. Our professional staff is on hand to assist you in any way that they can.
Reach out to us today to see how the right drug rehab center makes all the difference. Don’t fight your addiction or substance abuse issue alone. Instead, contact Pinnacle Peak Recovery for quality addiction treatment. Contact us today at 866-954-0524.