Is it getting away from you?

Signs that your drug or alcohol use is becoming a problem:

The more you have, the more you need
A couple of beers used to be enough but now you have to drink a lot more for the same buzz. This means you may have built up a tolerance. This can also occur for illicit drugs.

Perhaps you find you’re spending a lot more money for the same high.

Cutting back hurts
When you try to stop it’s not as easy as it used to be and the symptoms of withdrawal are getting stronger. These signs may include insomnia, anxiety, mood swings, anger, aches and depression.

You get a head start
You might be having a few before you go to the pub or to meet friends. Alternatively, you’re staying in and not going out because it’s easier to drink how you want to at home. Perhaps you’re reaching for a drink in the morning?

It impacts on your life
Work, relationships, family are all beginning to suffer as a result of your drug or alcohol use. Are you being honest with yourself about this? Have you stopped doing activities you used to enjoy?

It impacts on your health
Some signs are obvious, others are less apparent, such as insomnia, headaches or injuries related to being intoxicated. Substance abuse can also contribute to mental health problems such as depression, anxiety or psychosis.

You become dishonest
Are you being dishonest about your use to family and friends? Are you hiding your supply? Are you drinking by yourself to conceal how much you’re using? Are feelings of shame beginning to influence your actions?

Your hackles are up
If somebody questions your drinking or drug use how do you react? Often people who are in denial about their substance use will react defensively when someone tries to talk to them about it.

The costs are mounting
Addiction costs money. How much are you spending on alcohol or drugs? Where else could that money be going?