4 Early Signs of Drug and Substance Abuse You Shouldn't Ignore


Addiction can be best described as a psychological and physical need to continue using a substance, despite its ill-effects on mental and physical health. Drug addiction is a growing concern the world over. Anyone from any walk of life can get addicted to drugs. According to WHO statistics, at least 15.3 million people suffer from drug disorders and alcohol abuse results in 3.3 million deaths each year.

Generally, addiction symptoms appear early on, but can easily be misinterpreted as mood swings and stress. The symptoms of addiction vary amongst individuals, but generic signs of drug and substance abuse can be easily identified. Several physical and behavioral symptoms can indicate drug abuse and must not be ignored.

Here are the four most commonly identified early signs of drug abuse.

 1. Withdrawal Symptoms

Essentially, in cases of substance abuse, when the level of the addicted substance becomes low, the addict experiences frequent mood swings and showcases symptoms such as bad temper, poor focus, frustration, and bitterness. In most cases, the addict becomes highly defensive. Some common symptoms observed are fatigue, nausea, vomiting, insomnia, headaches, chills, dizziness, cramps, shakes, sweats, and even seizures.

For those who doubt that their loved ones may be suffering from drug abuse can easily test it through TestCountry home drug test kits. These tests offer instant results and are reliable.

2. Behavioral Changes

Every time a person consumes drugs, it gives him a high, which is capable of making him perform activities that he would probably never execute when sober. People under the influence of drugs carry out appalling acts such as stealing, sharing needles, possessing drug paraphernalia, having unprotected sex, and so on. When under drug influence, the overall physical and mental health of the addict is in danger. Behavioral changes such as being ready to go to dangerous extents just to earn some extra cash to be able to buy drugs, sudden episodes of over-aggression and depression within a short span of time, and other such extreme acts must be taken seriously.

Addicts who are no longer able to control the urge of consuming drugs often continue to use them even at work. A number of companies use saliva test kits to instantaneously test whether an employee is abusing drugs. These kits are easily available and offer trusted results in a short span of 10 minutes.

3. Anxiety and Cravings

Constant cravings for an addictive substance can lead to loss of focus, depression, and anxiety in an addict. The biggest problem of drug abuse is that as the user continues to use the drug, the body develops tolerance towards it and larger quantities are required to achieve the original high. This results in increased cravings and anxiety, leading to the addict losing the conscious understanding of good and bad, right or wrong.

Often law enforcement officials, employers, and even parents who doubt their child for drug abuse collect hair samples and use the instant hair follicle drug test kits to accurately test the presence of even the smallest amount drug. It is a zero-tolerance test to aptly find out if a person is addicted.

4. Physical Symptoms

Some of the most noticeable physical symptoms that separate an addict from normal people are his glazed or bloodshot eyes, constricted or dilated pupils, abrupt changes in his body weight, high susceptibility to infections, bruises, and other signs that would not appear under normal circumstances. Long-term substance abuse may bring changes in personality, cause brain dysfunction, and disrupt normal brain functions as well.

Urine drug test is one of the most popular means of examining the presence of drugs in a person’s body. This kit can detect drugs for even up to three days after they have entered the body. Many companies use it for pre-employment screening at the workplace and schools use it for random drug testing as well.

Drug Abuse Test Is Positive - What Next?

A positive drug test result can be the biggest nightmare for the addict’s loved ones. However, drug addiction is treatable in most cases and involves various steps such as detoxification, behavioral counselling, medication (often required in advanced cases), and treatment for depression and anxiety. Almost all cases of drug abuse carry chances of relapse and, therefore, a one-time treatment or a short-term treatment is not sufficient.

In most drug abuse cases, the treatment is long with multiple interventions and regular patient monitoring. The most common therapy is the combination of cognitive-behavioral therapy and medication. The treatment depends on the type of drug abuse and the level of addiction. A lot of treatment programs involve both, individual and group therapies where social reinforcement is offered to promote drug abstinence and a sober lifestyle.


The first step towards drug abuse treatment is the identification of the problem. The above-mentioned symptoms can be potential signs to identify an addict. Not only do these signs upsurge over time, but they can prove to be life-threatening for the addict if ignored. It is important to be aware of your surroundings and if there’s an addict around you, he/she must be given proper medical attention and psychological assistance.

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