What Are the Signs of Substance Abuse?

Signs of Substance Abuse

Substance abuse is a debilitating condition that impacts all facets of a person’s life. People who struggle with addiction often have difficulty maintaining relationships and keeping up with their responsibilities. Substance abuse can deter your life and make it difficult to get back on track.

If you suspect that a loved one is using substances, there are signs that you can look out for that might give you a better understanding of what’s going on. It can be difficult to ask if someone is struggling with addiction, but showing support and offering your help can make all the difference.

To learn more about the different signs and symptoms of substance abuse, continue reading on!

Understanding Addiction

Addiction is not a choice. It can happen to anyone, but many factors can heighten your chances of developing an addiction. Drug addiction does not steer clear of any type of person. Drug and alcohol abuse affects people of all socioeconomic backgrounds.

People begin using substances for many different reasons. Whether they start using recreationally or prescription drugs, addiction can develop and can impact their entire life. You first build tolerances, then develop dependencies, patterns begin to form, and without noticing, you have become addicted to a substance.

Quitting substances and trying to become sober is not easy. Often, people who struggle with addiction need to seek out professional help to enter into recovery. This is where rehabilitation facilities come into play. They offer a variety of treatments for addiction so that every person there can find a treatment plan that is right for them.

Brain Chemistry and Addiction

When a person abuses drugs, they can change the chemistry of their brain and make themselves reliant on the drugs. The absence of the drugs can send out an alert to the body that something is wrong.

People can start to experience withdrawal symptoms without substances in their system because it feels like they are missing a part of themselves. The brain of an addict begins to rely on the effects that the substance has on them; without it, they feel they cannot properly function due to excessive cravings for substances.

Why Does Someone Use Substances?

Substance use disorder can happen to anyone. Addiction does not discriminate, but many factors can impact why certain people become addicted to substances. Someone might start recreationally and then end up becoming dependent. You might get prescribed pain medication and then find yourself unable to function without a pill.

Additionally, many people use substances as a way to escape. People struggling with mental illness, family stressors, social pressure, or toxic environments are more likely to seek out substances to self-medicate. Many people do not want to be using drugs or alcohol to feel better, but it might be the easiest way for them to feel like they are.

Biology and Genetics

Some people are more likely to become addicts due to their genetics. People with family members who struggle with substance abuse are also more likely to suffer from it. If you know that addiction seems to run in your family, it is in your best interest to steer clear of drugs and alcohol.

Environmental Influences

How a person is brought up and what situations they find themselves in can impact whether a person develops addiction or not. If you are raised around people who struggle with addiction or who have drugs and alcohol in the house, it is easier to fall into a similar lifestyle.

As much as many people hate to admit it, who you surround yourself with can impact your addiction journey. If you are around people dangerously using substances, it can be difficult to take yourself out of those situations. People who are exposed to drugs and alcohol at an early age tend to use it as well in the future,

Substance Abuse Signs and Symptoms

There are a variety of different substances that can be abused. Not everyone has the same addictions or experiences substance abuse the same way, but there can be some clear signs that addiction might be present. When someone is struggling with substance abuse, they will usually display physical, behavioral, and psychological symptoms.

While the following lists are not exhaustive, there are some symptoms that people with addiction develop across the board.

Physical Signs of Drug and Alcohol Abuse

When someone is struggling with substance abuse, they experience various physical symptoms. Their health and physical appearance can change significantly and rapidly over short periods, and they might look ill, exhausted, or strung out. You might notice a person experiencing extreme and sudden weight loss, poor hygiene, and erratic sleep patterns.

People using substances may also have poor coordination and might experience a decline in their mobility or control of their movements. You might see them stumbling, falling over, or unable to keep their bodies upright. In addition, hyperactivity is an indicator of the use of stimulants.

People struggling with addiction might slur their words, have red or bloodshot eyes, or experience dry, irritated, or scabbed skin. Many people will feel uncomfortable in their own skin but cannot stop using and get drug-free on their own. Even when sobriety is the best choice, it is not the easiest choice.

Behavioral Signs of Drug Use

People using drugs and alcohol will likely be more irritated than usual, especially when they cannot access their substances. Irritability, aggression, and mood swings might impact someone with an addiction.

Someone with substance abuse will also experience exhaustion, lethargy, lack of motivation, and dramatic changes in behavior. Lethargy is particularly common in users of sedatives, such as Valium or Xanax.

In addition, drug users might experience mood swings where they appear extremely depressed when unable to use and euphoria when they gain access to their substances. In extreme cases, they may experience blackouts due to withdrawals.

Additionally, someone might begin to stop showing up for their responsibilities, such as work, school, or in their own home. They might stop talking with their group of friends or family or begin hanging out in new places with new people. They may also show signs of financial problems and behavioral changes related to money, such as impulsive spending.

The more dangerous behaviors a person exhibits, the more likely they have gotten themselves into something too much for them to truly handle.

Psychological Symptoms

Using drugs and alcohol can lead to changes in your psyche as well. People may begin to experience intense mood swings and develop other mental illnesses, such as depression and anxiety. Someone using may appear anxious or paranoid without real reason, showcasing erratic behavior that can lead to danger.

Some drugs, particularly hallucinogens like LSD, can even lead a person to experience hallucinations and delusions. These symptoms can harm an individual as they put themselves in dangerous locations or begin to question their reality.

Asking for help when unsure of what is happening is almost impossible. Where do you even start if you don’t understand how you ended up somewhere? It is also extremely scary to open up about your struggles when you are constantly doubting yourself and believing you don’t deserve to get help.

How Can You Help?

Keeping an eye out for all of your loved ones is an impossible task. However, if you notice that something is seemingly off with someone’s behavior or health, the first thing you’ll want to do is help. Asking if someone is okay can be off-putting to someone who is scared to disappoint people with their addiction.

Instead of telling a person you know that they have substance abuse, start by offering any support necessary to get them healthy. Let your loved one know that you love them and want the best for them, no matter what stands in the way.

Knowing that there is a support system behind you is extremely beneficial for someone trying to enter into recovery from substance abuse. Offering to take someone to and from meetings, take care of household tasks while someone is away at an inpatient program, or bring over some warm and comforting meals is a great place to start.

Seeking Treatment

Addiction is a mental health disorder. When left unchecked, and can wreak havoc on a person’s behavioral health. That’s why getting help from a mental health professional is so essential.

Seeking out a treatment program will be the best option for someone struggling with addiction. It is often very difficult to recover from addiction without the help of a medical professional specializing in addiction treatment. Withdrawals can be deadly if they aren’t properly treated, and there is a high risk of relapse when you try to detox on your own.

At Soba Recovery Center in San Antonio, Texas, you don’t have to be alone throughout your recovery process. From detoxification programs to outpatient treatment services, we have it all. Not only do we come up with a personalized treatment plan for you, but we work with you to ensure you get the most out of your treatment.

Reach out to a Soba representative today and learn more about the treatment options available. You or a loved one could be getting help sooner than you think, so don’t hesitate to reach out.


Understanding Drug Use and Addiction DrugFacts | National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA)

Warning Signs of Substance and Alcohol Use Disorder | Indian Health Service 

Warning Signs of Drug Abuse | Tennessee Department of Mental Health and Substance Abuse Services

Signs & Symptoms of Adderall Addiction

Signs & Symptoms of Adderall Addiction

Anyone can develop an Adderall addiction at any point in their life, though teens, college students, and young adults are the most affected. It has a high potential for addiction even though it is prescribed to people with attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) frequently.

Without proper management, this prescription drug use can become recreational and lead to Adderall addiction. Spotting the signs of Adderall addiction can help you or your loved ones seek substance use disorder treatment before the use becomes out of control.

Adderall can have negative effects on your physical and mental health. To learn more about how to spot the signs and symptoms of Adderall addiction, keep reading.

What Is Adderall?

Adderall is a brand-name prescription amphetamine usually prescribed to people with ADHD or narcolepsy. It is one of the most commonly used prescription stimulants and also happens to be one of the most abused drugs out there.

Not everyone who uses it will develop an addiction; the people who begin to take this stimulant medication unprescribed way are at a high risk of developing an addiction. Adderall increases dopamine and norepinephrine levels in the central nervous system.

This impacts how the brain responds to events, like paying attention and keeping up with outside stimuli without being overwhelmed. It also creates a rewarding effect, usually connected to completing tasks or overcoming obstacles.

People that develop a drug addiction to Adderall often feel a mental fog when they are not using it (one of many potential Adderall withdrawal symptoms). Adderall is needed to stay alert and productive; without it, it can feel like you cannot function. It is labeled as a schedule II controlled substance because of the high risk it poses to substance abuse and addiction.

What Are the Effects of Adderall?

People that are prescribed Adderall usually use it to help them focus and stay on task. People with ADHD often struggle with performing tasks in an organized way, and Adderall can help with this.

Some of the effects that might be experienced right after Adderall use are:

  • A desire to work
  • Increased heart rate
  • Feeling social
  • Talkative
  • Hyperactivity
  • Impatience or anxiety

Adderall Dependence vs. Adderall Addiction

You might develop an Adderall dependence without developing an Adderall addiction. If you are prescribed Adderall to help treat ADHD, your body will become dependent on the drug due to the interaction of chemicals in your body.

At this point, you will not have a psychological dependence on the drug; you just need it to treat your condition. Adderall addiction is when a person becomes physically or psychologically reliant on the drug.

You may find it difficult to cope without the drug and begin to think about using it all the time. Soon this drug has consumed your life, and you’re not sure when it even happened.

People who experience Adderall misuse are more likely to run out of their prescription faster than they should and will go to great lengths to get ahold of the drug. You will begin to see changes in a person who is addicted to Adderall, both physically and mentally.

What Are the Symptoms of Adderall Addiction?

Adderall often produces feelings of confidence and concentration, making this a drug used by many people. It can also be an appetite suppressant which can be dangerous for people who suffer from eating disorders.

It is abused for a multitude of reasons, including:

  • Studying
  • Staying awake
  • Weight loss
  • Athletic performance
  • Heightened experience

When you begin to misuse Adderall, symptoms may give it away that you might be struggling. Though many people who abuse Adderall can appear to be motivated individuals who are busy as can be.

Recognizing the signs and speaking up is the best way to get addiction treatment.


People who are suffering from Adderall addiction might display several physical symptoms. People who misuse Adderall experience the following physical symptoms:

  • Loss of appetite
  • Weight loss
  • Aggression
  • Exhaustion
  • Decline in hygiene
  • Impulse behaviors
  • Changes in personality
  • Sleeping for long periods
  • Convulsions
  • Irregular heartbeat
  • Nausea
  • Insomnia
  • Dry mouth
  • Loss of strength
  • Headaches
  • Dizziness
  • Twitching
  • Peeling Skin
  • Constipation
  • Urge to urinate

It might not be apparent right away that someone is misusing Adderall, so if you know a friend is prescribed it, don’t be afraid to check in if you think there could be drug abuse. Sometimes these side effects happen behind closed doors, and it can be difficult to see enough to know better.

If you are experiencing any of these symptoms and are actively using Adderall, whether prescribed or not, you should contact a recovery treatment center like Soba Recovery Center as soon as possible.


Adderall has a direct impact on your mind and mental state. It can help you stay focused and give you more energy to socialize and find inspiration, but misuse leads to dangerous mental effects.

Some mental effects that Adderall addiction can have on someone are:

  • Short-term memory loss
  • Over-working
  • Disorientation
  • Confusion
  • Mania
  • Depression
  • Anxiety
  • Paranoia or psychosis
  • Hallucinations

While there can be many benefits to prescribed Adderall that is being used properly, the side effects of its misuse are not to be taken lightly.


When you begin to misuse Adderall, it might become apparent in social settings. Not just out in public but also in small settings with friends and family. Paying attention to the following symptoms might allow you to recognize Adderall addiction in someone you love.

Some social symptoms of Adderall addiction are:

  • Intense excitement
  • Social withdrawal
  • Being overly talkative
  • Secretive behavior
  • Struggling financially
  • Problems within relationships

Signs Someone Is Struggling With Adderall Addiction

When someone is struggling with Adderall addiction, there are signs that you can look out for to try to get them help. While side effects and symptoms play into and help identify the addiction, there are signs directly related to Adderall that can be pretty common.

Increasing Dosage

People sliding into Adderall addiction will begin to increase their dosage, regardless of a doctor’s instruction. They will begin to feel that they need more of the drug to feel its effects. By increasing the dosage, a person is only feeding into the addiction and making it harder for their body to cope and adjust.

Recognizing the Harm

People that are struggling with addiction to Adderall might be able to recognize that they are struggling but use it despite that knowledge. If a person can understand that they are causing harm to themselves but make no effort to make a change, they might not be fully in control of their actions.

Spending Time and Money

For someone struggling, they will find no problem in spending hours of their day trying to figure out how they will get their hands on Adderall. They won’t even think twice about paying for it or putting a lot of their money towards it because it is considered a necessity.

Neglecting Other Activities

Adderall addiction can really consume your life. You will begin to rearrange your schedule around getting Adderall and think about the next time you can use it.

You might choose to use Adderall over going out with your friends or spending money on groceries, pushing you further into unhealthy self-isolation.

You might begin to notice that you cannot finish work without taking Adderall, and not because it will just help you focus more. Without it in your body, you can begin to suffer from withdrawal symptoms, making focusing and paying attention even more difficult.

Suffering Withdrawal Symptoms

People who are addicted to Adderall will likely suffer withdrawal symptoms when they try to stop using or don’t use it for a few days. This makes quitting on your own very difficult.

Sometimes entering a detoxification program at a recovery center is the best way to come off it. Coming off of it in a controlled environment can be ideal for someone struggling with Adderall addiction.

People who stop using Adderall and suffer from withdrawal symptoms often experience:

  • Fatigue
  • Lack of concentration
  • A slow heartbeat
  • Mental fog
  • Confusion

How To Get Help

Adderall addiction is nothing to joke about. Just because someone you know may have it prescribed doesn’t mean you should consider getting your hands on it. When used correctly, Adderall can do its intended job and help people struggling with ADHD. When misused, it can be a very difficult drug to come off of.

Seeking treatment with Soba Recovery Center in San Antonio, Texas, is one way to fight Adderall addiction. We offer detox services that provide you with around-the-clock care, behavioral therapy, and assistance as you go through the cravings and withdrawal symptoms. It is not easy, but it is completely worth it.

You can enter inpatient or outpatient Adderall addiction treatment programs to continue working through your addiction. Becoming sober is only part of working through your addiction, and relapses happen.

Find what works best for you, and know that you aren’t alone. Reach out to a Soba representative to talk more about our services and how we can get you help today!


Adderall Abuse On The Rise Among Young Adults, Johns Hopkins Study Suggests | Johns Hopkins University

Adderall Addiction Signs and Symptoms | Hazelden Betty Ford

Adderall (CII) | FDA

Potential Adverse Effects of Amphetamine Treatment on Brain and Behavior: A Review | NCBI

Meditation for Addiction: Your Complete Guide

Meditation for Addiction: Your Complete Guide

If you or a loved one struggles with addiction, you know just how difficult it can be to pull yourself out of such a dark place. You can begin to feel lonely, ashamed, and like you don’t have control over yourself or your future.

Seeking out addiction treatment is always a great step you can take toward recovery, but it requires a commitment to putting in the work to improve your mental health and well-being.

Many people entering recovery will need to find ways to keep themselves focused on their goals. There are plenty of groups and activities that you can become a part of to build community and get support in your substance abuse treatment and recovery process.

Meditation is both an activity and a method that you can participate in to help you regain self-control, empowerment, and confidence in yourself. Many people with substance use disorders use meditation to control their negative thoughts, put them back on the right track, and aid in relapse prevention.

Keep reading to learn more about meditation and how it can help those who struggle with addiction!

What Is Meditation?

Meditation is a practice and technique that involves connecting the mind and body to feel more at peace within yourself. Those who struggle with substance abuse and alcohol addiction may find this concept helpful. It can be difficult to control your actions even when you know that substance dependency is hurting you.

Meditation often involves a seated, cross-legged pose and deep breathing. White noise or light music can play in the background, but it likely looks different for everyone.

It’s often compared to yoga for its ability to reduce stress and create feelings of peace, but meditation is much less physically involved. You can practice meditation alone or in a group setting with guided meditation.

Types of Meditation

There are different meditation techniques you can try to find the right fit. The ultimate goal is to synchronize the mind and body to become more attuned to one another.

The idea is, especially with addiction, that you will begin to have more control over what you should actually be doing for yourself and learn how to calm yourself down during heightened situations in daily life.


Mindfulness meditation is one of the simplest and most common forms of meditation that you can practice. This is great for beginners as it teaches you to become more aware of your thoughts and surroundings in the present moment.

Here a few ways to engage in mindfulness:

  • Sit up straight, whether in a stable chair or cross-legged on the ground. Place your hands palm-down on your knees. Close your eyes.
  • Sit quietly and as still as you can. Allow every thought you have to go in and out of your mind, and don’t think too critically about how they make you feel.
  • If you’d like to open your eyes, stare a few feet in front of your body and fixate on an object on the ground. It could even be a crack in the floorboard.
  • Once you feel yourself no longer focusing on your thoughts but instead just concentrating on the object in front of you or your breathing, you are on the right path.

Mindfulness can be practiced anywhere and is the basis for many other meditation techniques. Mindfulness-based meditation is particularly useful for raising self-awareness and learning to let go of intrusive thoughts and cravings.


Breathing meditation is what mindfulness meditation can delve into. You often do breathing meditation once you have gone through the mindfulness process.

To practice breathing meditation:

  • Sit in the same position you were sitting in during your mindfulness meditation.
  • You are going to want to concentrate on your breath. This involves inhaling deeply and exhaling slowly.
  • You should work on relaxing your muscles, focusing solely on your breathing. Pay attention to how it feels to have air in and out of your nostrils.
  • If you feel yourself becoming distracted, thinking about things that you shouldn’t be, and forgetting about your purpose of doing this meditation, return to your breathing.

Both breathing and mindfulness meditation are very popular techniques practiced in addiction recovery centers. Breathing meditation sessions are great for managing your heart rate, which can help with stress reduction — especially when practiced with a trained healthcare professional.


There are other meditation techniques that you can practice at home. The water method might not be used while inpatient, but it can be very influential at home. Water has a way of making you feel grounded and light at the same time.

This method might take a bit more time and resources to do correctly, as you will need a bathtub or access to a body of water.

  • First, you will run a warm bath. You can mix bath salts or oils into the water and set up a few aroma candles around the tub.
  • Once the tub is full, you will turn off the tap. However, you will still allow small drops of warm water to drip into the tub.
  • Get comfortable in the bathtub and begin to focus on your breathing. Use the breathing meditation techniques from above. If you start to stray, focus on the sound of dripping water to help you ground yourself.

Not only is this technique a great way to practice meditation for addiction recovery, but a warm bath can do wonders for a person dealing with the trauma and struggles that substance abuse brings.


You don’t always have to be at home or sit still to meditate. A technique involves movement during meditation to immerse yourself in the world around you. This method prefers an outdoor space surrounded by nature for you to meditate in.

  • Find a place that brings you happiness, whether it’s your garden, a lake nearby, or nature trails down the street.
  • However you choose to move is up to you. You could walk, run, ride a bike, or swim. Focus on the movements that you are doing that are propelling you forward.
  • Every time you push off the ground, cup water in your hands to push you forward, or push against your bike pedals, imagine negative energy leaving your body and positive energy flowing through.

The purpose of movement meditation is to focus on how all of the processes in your body work together. If you have a 15-minute walk to an appointment or bus stop, use this time to meditate!

How Does Meditation Help With Addiction?

So what exactly is the connection between meditation and addiction? It has to do with how you can learn to improve the quality of your life with just yourself and your willpower. Many people with addiction struggle with motivation or believing in their ability to enter into recovery. Meditation is a technique that you can do on your own with little to no tools needed.

Addiction recovery relies on a balance between physical, mental, and spiritual health. Meditation actually improves all three. A study done in 2005 found that meditators had more activity within the prefrontal cortex and more neural density. This meant that meditation was able to stimulate and train the brain to feel happy without the use of substances.

Reduce Stress

Meditation has also been linked to reducing stress and anxiety. People with drug addiction undergo more stress than the normal person.

The stress of dealing with cravings, using and putting your life at risk, and disappointing people around you can put a toll on your body. It can also spiral you into even more anxiety — quite the double-edged sword.

Meditation’s purpose is to quiet the mind and allow for focusing on the moment you are present in. This can be used to help manage cravings and triggers. If you feel overwhelmed by a thought, trigger, or craving, practicing meditation can help you to recenter and make a thoughtful choice on how to proceed.

Boost Mood

Meditation is also known to boost your mood and keep you in a more positive place. As you practice allowing more positive thoughts in and letting the negative thoughts escape, you make more space for your happiness. By allowing yourself to feel more of that positive energy, you are setting yourself up for success.

You may begin to feel happier the more you meditate, more at peace, intuitive, creative, and independent. It is a great way to learn how to redirect the energy that you are feeling.

Improve Sleep

Struggling with falling asleep and staying asleep is something many people in recovery suffer from. Having impulsive thoughts, cravings, and anxiety throughout your day can result in exhaustion. You might feel like you are constantly fighting with yourself to stay sober, and while we applaud you for it, we know how hard it can be.

Meditation is meant to bring peace of mind and teach you how to center yourself. You can learn to remain calm and collected in instances of high stress. Meditation teaches you how to become one with your surroundings and make intuitive decisions.

Meditation allows you to relax more and allow yourself the calm that sleep can bring, setting your racing mind to sleep as well.

Tips on Meditation for Addiction

When you are beginning your journey with meditation to help you with your addiction, there are practices you can do to help keep you on track. At first, you might struggle a bit to stay focused on being unfocused on negative thoughts and feelings.

Through practice and dedication, you will think meditation is becoming easier and more of a second nature to you.

Stick to a Consistent Schedule

Something that is known to be useful when struggling with addiction and trying to enter into recovery is sticking to a schedule. You will want to set boundaries and goals each day, followed up with an idea of what every minute of your day will look like. It might seem intense, but it can be very helpful.

When you have accounted for all your time in a day, it’s more difficult to stray off. The same goes for meditation!

If you set a time of day, every day, that you practice 15 to 30 minutes of meditation, you will begin to see improvements. It helps to create a habit, and your body will realize when it’s time to meditate before too long.

You’ll see more of the health benefits of meditation when you practice with greater consistency.

Dedicate a Space for Meditation

Having a quiet, clean, and comfortable space for meditation will also help you stick to it. Before long, you will want to spend time in this space and work on yourself.

The peacefulness of your meditation space should be comforting and enticing. You will know that your energy is shifting when you enter your meditation space, which is the goal!

Keep a Journal

Whenever you have a thought or feeling during meditation, you should be writing it down. Maybe it doesn’t fully make sense to you yet or hasn’t exactly impacted your life, but you never know when it could come in handy.

Having a journal dedicated to your meditative journey can also show the progress you are making. You might feel empowered by the strides you have made, and seeing it all play out in one location should only motivate you to continue on

your journey.

Find Community

Practicing meditation during an inpatient or outpatient session with a treatment program group of other people can help break you out of your shell. You might feel lost or like you don’t know where to start, but with guided group meditation, you can better understand your goals.

Talking to others about their journey with addiction and meditation might resonate with you and push you to practice more. You can also join meditation groups that aren’t specific to your addiction, but the parallels and commonalities you might pull from recovery groups might surprise you!

Community is everything when it comes to addiction recovery.

Find Help With Soba Recovery Center

You don’t have to look any further to find a recovery center that offers meditation practices, Soba Recovery Center in San Antonio has you covered. Soba offers yoga, eye movement desensitization and reprocessing (EMDR), and meditation to help relax your muscles, build trust within yourself, and set you up for success in your recovery.

The road to recovery may be long and bumpy, but we here at Soba have your best interests in mind.

To learn more about how Soba Recovery Center could benefit you or a loved one, reach out to a Soba representative!


How Meditation Can Reshape Our Brains: Sara Lazar at TEDxCambridge 2011 | Harvard University

Meditative Therapies for Reducing Anxiety: A Systematic Review and Meta-analysis of Randomized Controlled Trials | NCBI

Can Meditation Treat Insomnia? | Sleep Foundation

Opioid Addiction: Signs and What To Look For

Opioid Addiction

Opioid addiction is a chronic disease that can negatively affect you physically, mentally, and socially. It’s a very difficult addiction to overcome, and it doesn’t always happen by simply experimenting with drugs. Opioids can be prescribed to you for pain after surgeries or accidents and cause problems from there.

When you or a loved one are struggling with opioid addiction, there are many signs to look out for that signify a struggle. It is important to be aware of the signs so that you can support your loved ones with opioid addiction efficiently and effectively.

Keep reading to learn more about the signs of opioid addiction and how to get help.

What Is Opioid Addiction?

Opioid addiction, or opioid use disorder (OUD), is characterized by the constant need to use opioids to function throughout the day, regardless of any negative outcomes. It is classified as a disease and substance use disorder and can form from various reasons and influences.

People who struggle with opioid addiction will have a strong urge to use opioids even when they are no longer needed because they have developed the need for the additional endorphins in their bodies. These individuals may need higher doses to achieve the same effects, which can result in drug overdoses.

Opioids are prescription drugs that are primarily used as pain relievers or painkillers. Individuals with chronic pain may be prescribed opioids — however, the constant nature of their pain can lead to eventual drug abuse.

Prescription opioid abuse can eventually turn into other types of drug addiction, especially since prescriptions are so closely monitored for signs of opioid misuse. Not everyone becomes addicted to opioids if prescribed, but they are dangerous drugs that should be closely monitored to avoid dependency.

Examples of prescription opioid medications include:

  • Oxycodone (OxyContin)
  • Fentanyl
  • Methadone
  • Buprenorphine
  • Codeine
  • Hydrocodone

Another type of opioid, heroin, is commonly used as a street drug. Heroin is a dangerous substance that can lead to increased drug abuse and overdose due to the unregulated nature of its production.

What Causes Opioid Addiction?

Many factors can lead a person to opioid addiction. Environmental, societal, and genetics can play a role in developing opioid addiction. However, if they never try opioids, it’s unlikely that the addiction will develop.

People with family members who struggle with addiction, both generally and to opioids, are at a higher risk of developing OUD. If you grew up in a house where opioids were abused or in a community where opioid addiction was a problem, you might be more likely to try them and develop an opioid drug addiction.

Additionally, people who struggle with poverty, mental health issues, trauma, or other substance abuse disorders are more likely to try opioids and become addicted. Opiates aren’t often the first drug someone tries, but many people make it there eventually.

People are still given opioids after surgeries, injuries, or accidents. This could be very dangerous if you are predisposed to addiction or have a family history of drug abuse. You should let our doctor know about your connection to addiction before allowing yourself to be prescribed opioids.

Symptoms of Opioid Use Disorder (OUD)

If you are worried that someone in your life is struggling with OUD, you should consider some of the following signs. Opioid addiction has physical and mental symptoms, economically and socially. By recognizing when someone is struggling, you may be able to help get them out of their negative cycle and avoid opioid overdose.

Physical and mental signs 

Opioids can really take a toll on your body and mind. A person struggling with opioid addiction may stop acting like their normal self, and their appearance might also shift. You may notice that their behavior becomes more irritable and unpredictable. You might not feel as safe as you used to due to outbursts.

Some signs to look out for are:


  • Weight loss
  • Poor hygiene
  • Vomiting and diarrhea more frequently
  • Lack of coordination and motor skills
  • Scabs or puncture wounds


  • Difficulty concentrating
  • Feeling detached
  • Erratic behavior
  • Depression and anxiety
  • Paranoia
  • Emotional mood swings
  • Irritability and aggression

If you know someone suffering from opioid addiction, you may have noticed signs of opioid withdrawal. Withdrawal symptoms include watery eyes, inability to sleep, anxiety, nausea and vomiting, and stomach cramping.

Some individuals with opioid addictions may also carry naloxone or naltrexone, opioid-reversing medications designed to prevent overdose deaths. Overdoses are more common in individuals who also abuse benzodiazepines, like Xanax, which are nervous system depressants.

Economic and Social Signs

Opioid addiction also impacts how a person behaves in social settings and impacts their finances. Maintaining any kind of addiction can be very expensive. On top of it being expensive, it can be difficult to hold down a job during this period, making it more difficult to obtain the drugs. However, many people will put finding a way to get drugs over their own health and safety.

Some economic and social signs to look out for are:


  • Asking for money more frequently
  • Not being able to hold down a job
  • Stealing from family or friends


  • Avoiding family and friends
  • Not showing up for work
  • Lying to friends and family
  • Lying to doctors about pain levels
  • Hanging around with a new group of people

How To Prevent OUD

Never taking an opioid is the most straightforward way to avoid developing opioid use disorder. However, some people will still have to take prescription opioids for their pain relief, and there are ways to avoid developing an addiction to your prescription.

For starters, you will want to take the medication exactly how it is prescribed and have someone else hold you accountable for it. If it helps, you can have someone you trust to be in charge of your medication and help to administer them to you when you need them.

In many cases, you can ask what your other options would be for pain management. Being upfront with your doctor and other healthcare providers about any addiction concerns will help you devise a plan on how to take them properly.

If you notice signs of opioid addiction in yourself or a loved one, recognizing the risks and accepting treatment is the first step in your path to recovery. Spending some time in a medication-assisted treatment facility is better than spending the night in an emergency department.

If inpatient treatment is too much of a time commitment, there are several outpatientopioid treatment centers as well.

If you feel like you are struggling but don’t have a support system, you may want to call the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration’s helpline. The SAMHSA helpline can help direct you to human services resources, medical providers, and treatment centers.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), the National Institutes of Health (NIH), and the National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA) also have a wide selection of online resources and prevention techniques to help you navigate your journey with awareness.

Treating Opioid Addiction at Soba Recovery

If you are struggling with opioid addiction, there is hope for you to enter into recovery. Many people in your life want to support you, and Soba Recovery Center in San Antonio, Texas, is also here to help. Through multiple forms of treatment, like inpatient care, detoxification services, medically-assisted treatments (MAT), and sober living situations, you are supported throughout your time with Soba.

Our trained professional staff is here to create an individual treatment plan that works to treat your specific needs. Everyone struggles with addiction in their own way, but there is always a path to take to recovery.

Reach out today to a Soba representative and learn more about how we can help you or your loved one battle opioid addiction and get back to feeling like themselves.


Opioid Addiction | NCBI Bookshelf

Opioid Use Disorder – Fact Sheets | Yale Medicine

Identifying and Managing Opioid Use Disorder (OUD) | U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs

Is Alcoholism a Mental Illness?

Is Alcoholism a Mental Illness?

Mental illness is often the result of struggles that arise, leading people to be unable to care for themselves properly. Mental illness can be impacted by various environmental, mental, societal, and physical factors.

Alcoholism falls under addiction, which is classified as a disease, and though it can be difficult, it is a disease you can find a cure for. Unfortunately, there is no medication or specific treatment that cures it; it comes down to your specific needs.

Both alcoholism and mental illness are highly stigmatized in today’s society. You may have a mental illness that is not related to alcoholism, but if you suffer from Alcohol Use Disorder (AUD), you classify it as a mental illness.

The best thing you can do is to seek specialized treatment to treat all underlying mental illnesses that may or may not be contributing to your alcohol use.

Keep reading to learn more about how alcoholism and mental illness are intertwined.

Alcohol and Mental Health

To best understand how alcohol and mental health coexist, it’s best to understand how alcoholism can happen and the different stages. Alcohol is a commonly used substance that doesn’t always lead to substance abuse, but having other mental health issues can contribute to substance misuse.

By getting to the bottom of the correlation between these two, you can begin to see why you or a loved one might struggle with both.

What Is Mental Illness?

Because alcoholism is a mental illness, it’s important to understand what it entails. Mental illness prevents a person from behaving or coping normally, meaning the ability to regulate emotions or make good decisions can feel more difficult.

Mental illness can bring forth pain not visible to the eye, but that doesn’t mean it isn’t there. It can also be very difficult and, for some, embarrassing to come forward about their struggles with mental illness. This means that not everyone gets the correct help to feel better.

As a result, more people turn to self-medicating to numb their pain. Alcohol and other substances have effects that can trick you into thinking that you’re no longer depressed or anxious. This is where the tie between mental illness and alcoholism comes into play.

What Is Alcoholism?

Alcoholism is unfortunately common and sometimes difficult to see happening right in front of you. There are different levels of alcoholism that all impact the brain and your life. Catching on early can really help to find the root of the problem and get you treatment sooner than later.

Problematic Drinking

What may have once been social drinking and very casual can become problematic. At this stage of alcoholism, it may not even be noticeable to the person drinking that things are taking a turn for the worse. But those around might begin to notice changes in behavior and increased drinking.

Financial and health issues may begin to arise during this period. Withdrawal symptoms are prevalent enough that when there is a lack of alcohol in the system, the person will feel cravings for it. This person will need alcohol to do just about anything, including wake up and get to work or function in social settings.

Severe Alcohol Abuse

After the problematic stage, you enter into severe alcohol abuse. At this point, the user is dependent on the substance and will experience rough withdrawal symptoms if they don’t drink daily. This stage impacts both the physical and mental health of a person.

You might experience more irritability, anger, stress, anxiety, depression, and aggression. It will be more difficult to control these feelings; others might view you as unpredictable. People around you may mention the issues they see, but often apprehensively.

At this stage, it is common to see people pulling away from their friends and family who want the best for them because it goes against what alcohol demands.

Obsessive Alcohol Abuse

Full-blown alcoholism has set in at this point. The user will need alcohol in their system at any point of the day to ‘function.’ This is because they have been programming their brain to expect alcohol, so when there isn’t enough in the body, the body feels like it’s going to shut down.

Often, an alcoholic will be so consumed with ensuring when they get their next drink that, it’s the only thing on their mind.

How Does Alcohol and Mental Illness Impact Each Other?

Alcoholism and mental illness is not a cause-and-effect situation. Instead, they often co-occur because of the way that they can both contribute to each other. Mental illness can contribute to substance use, and substance use can greatly impact mental health.

Co-Occurring Diagnosis

A person might use substances to try to minimize their feelings of depression, but at the same time, those substances can increase anxiety or paranoia. Over 50 percent of people with substance use disorder also have one or more mental illnesses.

Having a co-occurring diagnosis can be both helpful and difficult at the same time. When you know what you’re trying to treat, you can get the proper treatment to help both disorders. Though, having a co-occurring diagnosis means you’re more likely to struggle more intensely, with both disorders feeding into each other.

Affecting the Brain

In recent years, studies have looked more deeply into the impact alcohol has on the brain. It has been found that the more you drink, the more likely your brain’s makeup is to alter and significantly become less functional.

Your brain becomes dependent on the alcohol you’re feeding it, so without alcohol in the system, your brain will react negatively. It thinks that something is wrong if there is no alcohol in the body, convincing you that you need more to be okay.

Alcohol affects the prefrontal cortex and cognitive function, the basal ganglia, which supports motor function, and the extended amygdala, which controls reward recognition. If these parts of the brain are being impacted, it will increase the cravings an alcoholic feels.

Avoiding Treatment

As mentioned above, it can be difficult to find the right treatment when you struggle with a co-occurring diagnosis. Many people go undiagnosed for their mental illness or substance abuse, so when they go to get treatment for the other (if they do), they aren’t given the proper treatment plan.

This can lead to fewer people seeking out treatment. Especially if they had tried in the past but found that all the plans they tried were unsuccessful. If you aren’t considering all aspects of your mental health, you may not find success easily.

Is Alcoholism Considered a Mental Illness? 

The short answer is: yes. Alcoholism and alcohol use disorder are considered to be mental illnesses. This became the case in 1980 when the American Psychiatric Association identified it as a primary mental health disorder in the DSM. This means that it’s not a choice to become an alcoholic and that there are treatments that can help you fight back and enter recovery.

Alcoholism is not just a problem for a certain kind of person in a specific setting. It can affect anyone at any stage in their life. Treatment is necessary to overcome substance abuse.

Getting Treatment for Alcoholism with Soba Recovery

At Soba Recovery Center in San Antonio, Texas, you don’t have to worry about getting the right treatment plan because we work with you to understand your needs better. During the screening process, we will dive into your past medical and mental health issues to see if you could be struggling with co-occurring mental illness and substance use disorder.

Not only will your substance use be treated through medically-assisted treatment (MAT) and therapy, but your mental health will be considered and treated as well. If you’re experiencing withdrawal symptoms, staying in an inpatient or detoxification program is in your best interest. This will give more responsibility to you and your actions.

During treatment, you are taught how to cope with your mental illness, improve your health, and regulate your thoughts and emotions better. All of this will become much easier as you progress through your recovery.

Soba Recovery offers inpatient services for those who need 24/7 around-the-clock care, outpatient care for those who still need to maintain some of their responsibilities, and sober living for people looking to find support in their community with like-minded individuals. If this could benefit your recovery journey, reach out to a Soba representative today!


Alcoholism and Psychiatric Disorders | NIAAA

Alcohol-Use Disorder and Severe Mental Illness | NCBI

Alcohol and the Brain: An Overview | NIAAA

Relationships and Addiction: Navigating a Healthy Partnership

Relationships and Addiction: Navigating a Healthy Partnership

People can enter into addiction at any stage of their life. They might be happily married to their high school sweetheart and not fall victim until 20 years in, or they might become dependent during college while going on dates and trying to form connections.

For those that have struggled with addiction or have been in relationships with people who have substance use problems, it’s well-known just how difficult maintaining a healthy and happy relationship is. No matter how much you love your partner, addiction will always feel like it’s stealing your partner away.

Learning how to navigate a healthy relationship while dealing with alcohol or drug addiction is almost as much work as working on your addiction. Drug or alcohol addiction and the destructive behavior it can cause can impact a relationship just as much as a relationship can impact a person’s addiction. To benefit one, the other must be worked on simultaneously.

Keep reading to learn more about navigating a healthy partnership during addiction by understanding how to maintain good behaviors and communicate appropriately.

The Reality of Substance Abuse and Relationships

Many people can recount their relationships with family members, friends, or partners lost due to substance abuse and its impact on mental health.

Unfortunately, many people who struggle with addiction will have a story about someone that is no longer a part of their life because of their substance use. That person may have had to draw healthy boundaries to meet their own needs instead of focusing solely on another person’s addiction recovery.

Addiction does not hold back and can convince you to do many things that are not good for your well-being. While substance abuse is extremely difficult to deal with as an addict, addiction also affects the person in a relationship with the abuser.

Partners of addicted people often experience intense anxiety about their safety and health, might financially struggle if they are supporting their loved one, and feel guilt about facilitating addiction or not intervening successfully. These issues make it difficult to set boundaries and can lay the foundation for an unhealthy relationship.

The cycle of guilt and sorrow that forms with addiction can seem never-ending. This weighs heavily on a partnership. Often, the partner of someone with substance abuse must also do what is best for them and their health, and that can be leaving the relationship to work on finding happiness.

This difficult decision can mean negative reactions from the person struggling, resulting in a spiral, but it’s the reality for many. This is why healthy relationships and patterns are important. If you cannot practice healthy habits, you might not be ready to be in a relationship until you learn to take better care of your well-being.

Challenges That Addiction Brings

When in a relationship with someone struggling with addiction, many unique challenges may arise that a normal relationship pairing wouldn’t quite understand. Of course, in any normal, healthy relationship, issues come and go. Addiction makes things tricky.

Normal healthy partners aren’t constantly worried that their partner is potentially in danger or harm every time they go out. They might not have to take care of finances, bills, rent, food, child care, or schooling alone and might have better communication and trust. These are all issues that can arise in a relationship involving addiction.

Lack of Trust

For people struggling with addiction, lying and being deceitful might come with the territory. This can cause many issues in a relationship, but the implications can be much more dangerous when drugs and other substances are involved. A lack of trust can form between two people when substance abuse becomes prevalent.

A lot of denial goes into addiction, and it’s very hard for someone with substance use disorder to be truthful about their using habits and other aspects of their life. They might lie about where they are going, who they are going out with, where certain money is going, how their job or school is doing, and so much more.

These lies can add up and become overwhelming. Not only are they difficult to keep track of, but they diminish your trust in your partner, which is detrimental to a relationship.

Financial Issues

With substance use disorder comes financial issues. Drugs and alcohol cost money, and things can sure get expensive. In an equal relationship, money and finances must be a part of daily communication to function as a partnership.

With addiction, money can seem to fly out the door. There can be an imbalance of power when an addicted partner uses money their partner has earned and uses it to support them.

This kind of struggle can be overwhelming and lead to further issues in the relationship. It can sever trust and prevent people from helping you in the future.

Safety concerns

Not only are there safety concerns for the partner addicted to substances, but also for the partner who is not. You can cross paths with many people when you get involved with drugs and other substances. Some people might get into financial trouble with others as a result of their use, and this can be a concern for their partner.

Additionally, drugs and alcohol can push someone into dangerous situations where they could seriously harm themselves or others, including instances of physical abuse. No one should have to put themselves at risk due to another person’s drug use, and in many cases, the danger is what really drives people away.

Emotional Connection and Instability

On top of safety and finances, relationships are hard work. People crave intimacy and emotional connections with their partners, which isn’t always given when a person struggles with substance abuse. It’s difficult to be in a relationship with someone who isn’t putting all of their energy into it and is actively creating more distance due to drug use.

Someone using drugs and alcohol might not be fully present in a relationship until they have done work for themselves to enter into recovery. In contrast, the addicted partner might also struggle with codependency and rely on their partner completely.

This partner may suffer from low self-esteem due to their addiction and experience an inability to practice healthy self-care. Until they want to change and seek help, you may not see a stable and healthy relationship form.

Learning To Create Balance

To maintain a healthy relationship while struggling with addiction, it may come as no surprise that you need to work really hard. Finding someone who supports you throughout your recovery process is essential.

Still, you need to put in the work too! You can’t expect your partner to do everything for you and support you through everything if you aren’t trying your hardest to get better.

Recovery comes first

You can only maintain balance if you are actively working towards recovery. Recovery needs to be your main goal because the only true way for your relationship to prosper and be healthy is for you to find a solution to your addiction-related issues. Your partner will need to see that you are doing the work, so they know all of their efforts are worth it.

For people in a relationship with someone struggling with addiction, you have to allow them to focus on their recovery. Supporting them, showing up for them, and holding them accountable can help them throughout the process, even if it’s difficult.

This will give them additional confidence in themselves to overcome their addiction, knowing their loved ones are behind them.

Open and Consistent Communication

One of the biggest issues of having a relationship with someone in active addiction is lying and deceit. A way to combat this is to work on open and honest communication. Once you disrupt the trust your partner has been building with you, you can begin to see the cracks form in the relationship.

When you are open in your communication, you don’t need to hide your struggles from your partner. You can communicate your issues and not feel alone trying to deal with them. One of the many benefits of being in a partnership is that you have someone who will be on your side, and with addiction, the more people in your corner, the more likely you are to be successful.

Lead With Kindness

Being in a relationship while struggling with addiction can show your partner the really dark sides of you. You may have to remind yourself that they have your best interest in mind and that how you feel in a moment isn’t necessarily how you feel about your partner.

If you are thoughtful in your reactions to each other and situations that arise, you are more likely to overcome them with grace. Recovery is not easy on anyone, but it’s absolutely worth the few bumps in the road that it comes with. You and your partner will look back one day and know that the love and respect for each other were always there and just waiting to blossom!

Starting a New Relationship During Addiction

It’s not recommended to seek out a new relationship when struggling with addiction. If you are going to try to enter the recovery stage, you need to focus on yourself.

Recovery is not easy, and being by yourself can help keep you more focused on your goals. You might be more vulnerable during this stage of your life, and trying to enter into a relationship could give you further complications.

Reach Out for Help With Soba Recovery

Having your partner’s support can mean so much in your recovery journey, but getting professional help will push you deeper into recovery. If you are serious about recovery from the effects of drug or alcohol addiction, you can get help at Soba Recovery Center in San Antonio, Texas! You can access 24/7 around-the-clock care from treatment providers who want to see you thrive.

One thing about a partnership is that you often have many shared responsibilities within your household and in your relationship. Not everyone can drop everything and enter into inpatient care, but that doesn’t mean you can’t access care. Reach out to a representative to learn more about the following services that Soba provides to learn how you can get help today!

Inpatient Treatment Programs

For those struggling with addiction and needing more care than others, inpatient services are highly recommended. You get access to medically-assisted addiction treatment if you need it, both individual and group therapy and support group sessions, and a sober and supportive community. Inpatient services allow you to be around others struggling with the same problems.

At Soba, you build relationships with medical professionals and the community around you. 24/7 care allows you to get support whenever you need it, which can benefit many struggling people.

Outpatient services

Not everyone can drop what they are doing and enter into inpatient care. Outpatient care offers a solution to this issue. If you have commitments you cannot abandon, you can work with an outpatient program to develop a specialized treatment plan.

Outpatient services still offer therapy, group sessions, activities, and other treatment services to people who need more flexibility when receiving it. Depending on your work or school schedule, you can come in the mornings or late at night.

Sober Living

While living apart from your significant other might not be the goal, sober living can be helpful for some who are in recovery. When you live in a sober facility, you are eliminating the stressors of the outside world, where drug abuse and alcohol abuse could bring an anxiety-inducing situation.

Sober living spaces are supportive of your needs during recovery and give you a space that should be stress-free. Once you can get back out into the real world, you can build even more on your partnership. This time apart might just be what they need to see that you are serious about making strides in your recovery process!

A healthy relationship takes time as it is, but with addiction, it might take a bit longer. There’s no shame in that! Take all the time you need and build up your trust and communication to see your relationship flourish.


Romantic Relationships And Substance Use In Early Adulthood: An Examination Of The Influences Of Relationship Type, Partner Substance Use, And Relationship Quality | NCBI.NIH.gov

Substance Abuse and Intimate Relationships | American Association for Marriage and Family Therapy

How Social Relationships Influence Substance Use Disorder Recovery: A Collaborative Narrative Study | NCBI

How Long Does It Take To Get Addicted to Meth?

How Long Does It Take To Get Addicted to Meth?

Methamphetamines are nothing to joke about. It is a dangerous substance. Any amount of meth use is too much meth use.

If you’re concerned about someone and aren’t sure if it’s due to meth addiction, keep reading to learn more about the drug, its effects, and how long it can take someone to become addicted to it.

What Is Meth?

Meth, otherwise known as methamphetamine, is a highly addictive stimulant that affects the central nervous system in a person’s brain.

You may hear other names for meth, including:

  • Crystal meth
  • Speed
  • Zoom
  • Crank
  • Glass
  • Rock candy
  • Crystal

Meth was created by combining amphetamine and other chemicals over a century ago. In fact, meth was originally prescribed as a decongestant and a weight loss aid. It didn’t take long to notice that meth was a highly addictive drug and an extreme danger to people.

Methamphetamine use is unlike alcohol or marijuana. Most people can use these substances without them turning into an addiction. Alcohol and marijuana can be safe in small quantities in controlled environments.

Meth, however, is a serious drug that can lead to addiction, ongoing health issues, and even death. 

Meth users don’t usually start off using meth as their first drug. It’s often a drug that comes after experimenting with other kinds of drugs. Sometimes people turn to meth once other hard drugs stop producing the high they crave.

The effects of meth are strong and intense, usually more so than other drugs. If someone has built up a tolerance to a different substance, meth might still be able to give them the high that they are looking for.

You can ingest crystal meth through injections, swallowing a pill, snorting it, and smoking it. It might look different depending on the ingredients used to create it, like little shards of glass or an odorless powder, with colors ranging from pink to white to brown.

It’s one of the most addictive substances you could get your hands on. Any use of meth is considered abuse.

What Are the Effects of Meth?

When you smoke or inject meth, you experience an initial “rush” of euphoria that increases your heart rate and blood pressure while enhancing pleasure-inducing neurotransmitters. When you snort meth, you experience the euphoria but not the “rush.”

Injecting meth produces the most intense feelings. The stimulant effects can last for 30 minutes, followed by a steady high that lasts anywhere from eight hours to a full day. Many people who use meth will be high for several days before coming down.

Some effects of meth use are:

  • Paranoia
  • Elation
  • Alertness
  • Confusion
  • Anxiety
  • Insomnia
  • Aggression
  • Talkativeness
  • Hyperactivity
  • Agitation
  • Lack of appetite
  • Weight Loss
  • Tremors
  • Irritability
  • Irregular heartbeat

How Long Is Meth in Your System?

Meth can last up to 24 hours in your blood, creating the feeling of being high. Depending on how you take it, it might affect you more rapidly. An injection is the quickest way to become high.

It can remain in your urine between four days and one week and up to 90 days in your hair. Though it might not make you high during these extended periods on its own, the impact that meth can have on your health long-term is still there.

What Is the History of Meth?

There was one point in history when the effects and impacts of amphetamines were unknown. Since its creation over a century ago, meth has been used legally, though not for very long. During this time of uncertainty, right as this drug was being created, meth tablets were being distributed to German soldiers during World War II so that they could fight all day and night.

Military amphetamine was also available to American and British soldiers to help them fight off fatigue and boost their overall morale. Unfortunately, it also led to violent behavior.

Afterward, amphetamine was prescribed as Benzedrine to treat colds and asthma and began to be used recreationally during the 1950s. This then began a domino effect of substance abuse. The side effects of anger and aggression quickly became apparent.

In 1971, the United States Drug Enforcement Administration (USDEA) made amphetamines a Schedule II controlled substance because of their risk for abuse and dependence. Still, there is. Desoxyn –the pure form of methamphetamine that occasionally will be prescribed to someone who is struggling with ADHD. Regardless, it’s still highly monitored and poses a risk for substance use disorder.

Can You Become Addicted After One Use?

In order to be diagnosed with an addiction, there needs to be repeated misuse of a substance. Therefore, by the definition of “addiction,” you can’t technically be addicted to meth after just one use.

However, meth is a highly addictive substance, and using it once can cause you to crave more. It is very easy to become addicted to meth, which is why some people believe you can become addicted after just one use.

Once you start using meth, it becomes difficult to stop. Your body is constantly chasing a high that can only be reached by using methamphetamines. Without meth addiction treatment, you can spiral into severe meth addiction.

What Are the Signs of Meth Addiction?

Once a person becomes addicted to meth, there are some things you might begin to notice. Of course, there are immediate side effects of meth that are noticeable when you’re in the presence of someone using meth, but meth addiction has more social and financial effects.

If you believe someone is struggling with a meth addiction, you might notice some of the following:

  • Bouts of paranoia
  • Unexpected weight loss
  • Burn marks
  • Skin sores
  • Mood swings
  • Irritability
  • Rapid eye movement
  • Facial tics
  • Abnormal sleep patterns
  • Twitching
  • Financial strain
  • Hiding from friends and family
  • Missing social gatherings
  • Struggling to retain a job
  • Lack of hygiene
  • Decline in mental health
  • Increased body temperature
  • Wakefulness
  • Dry mouth

If you notice any of these signs in someone or are experiencing them yourself, it might be time to reach out and enter into addiction treatment. You can improve your well-being with the right professional help.

What Are the Long-Term Effects of Meth Addiction?

Using meth over an extended period of time will result in multiple unwanted side effects. Like any substance abuse, it starts to catch up with both your mind and body. Identifying your issues with meth early can help you avoid many of these outcomes.

We understand it is difficult to ask for help. There is a lot of stigma around meth use and addiction. Opening up about your struggles is never easy. That’s where Soba Recovery Center comes in. No one should suffer through the long-term effects of meth addiction.

After all, the long-term effects of meth abuse are frightening. People who develop skin sores might pick and scratch at them, making them more susceptible to infection. Long-time use of meth can also result in severe tooth decay and gum disease (otherwise known as “meth mouth”.)

Many people lose their teeth if they do not get treated soon enough for their addiction. If you snort meth, you are more likely to develop chronic nosebleeds from damage to your sinus cavities and nasal passages.

People who inject meth can suffer from collapsed veins and put themselves at more risk of developing a blood-borne pathogenic disease, such as HIV or AIDS, as a result of sharing needles. Additionally, people who use meth are at a higher risk of contracting a sexually transmitted disease than others.

Meth already increases heart rate and blood pressure, but extended use of meth can lead to serious heart problems later on in life. Meth usage can lead to stroke or a heart attack because it overwhelms the system, especially when used in high quantities. Meth has a negative effect on the brain and the dopamine in a person’s body when used long-term.

Other long-term effects of meth use to look out for are:

  • Inability to complete daily tasks
  • Depression and anxiety
  • Sleep issues
  • Psychosis
  • Organ damage
  • Delusions
  • Impulsivity
  • Heart failure
  • Inability to concentrate
  • Loss of close relationships
  • Homelessness
  • Financial issues

What Are the Drugs Often Used With Meth?

If you are using meth, it’s likely that you are also struggling with other substances. You might be using them at the same time as meth, which can be very dangerous.

Mixing drugs with meth can create an even more intense feeling. If this drug mixing occurs due to tolerance to meth, finding ways to experiment with the high is an unfortunate reality. It can lead to death.


Alcohol and meth work somewhat opposite of each other. Alcohol is a depressant and meth is a stimulant. Using both at the same time often results in a person drinking more as the effects of alcohol are masked by the effects of meth.

When you use both at the same time, you increase your risk factors for things like liver failure, hallucinations, cancer, and even sudden death.


A “speedball” is when someone combines both opioids and meth to create an ultra-intense high that is hard to replicate otherwise. For daily users, this is something that might give them a shot at a new level of high that they are searching for.

But, when these substances are combined, it is more likely to cause that person to overdose. Speedballs greatly limit a person’s ability to function, increasing the risk that they will injure themselves or others.


People who use meth frequently are known to experience some level of anxiety. Xanax is commonly prescribed for people with anxiety and panic disorders and is used to offset the effects of meth. So, while meth might make you feel anxious and sad, Xanax helps alleviate those feelings of stress.

This combination can lead to serious heart problems including heart failure. Meth speeds your heart up while Xanax slows it down, so they are constantly fighting with each other to overpower one another. Over time, this can cause damage to your heart.

What Is the Treatment for Meth Addiction?

Meth addiction is often severe, and there is no easy way to “cure” it. However, when you enter into addiction treatment, you are giving yourself the best chance at recovery.

You will need professional healthcare assistance to overcome meth cravings. Trying to become sober from meth use can be fatal. That’s why we offer a variety of different treatment options, so you can find something that works for you.

Treatment programs for meth addiction will likely involve a detox. Trying to quit meth on your own can lead to serious withdrawal symptoms. With detoxification treatment, you get 24/7 surveillance and access to medical professionals to help keep you safe during your meth withdrawal.

Afterward, you can move on to either an inpatient or partial hospitalization program to begin working on other aspects of your addiction. It’s not just about drug use. Behavioral health is an essential part of treatment that can help set you up for sobriety in the future.

Get Help at Soba Recovery Center

If you’re wondering where you can get this kind of treatment, look no further. Soba Recovery Center in San Antonio, Texas, can offer you the support you need to overcome meth addiction with both inpatient and outpatient services.

Admitting you have a meth addiction can be scary. Don’t let your fear hold you back from living your best life. If you feel like you lack support from the people around you, finding community through group therapy and sober living at Soba Recovery Center can help change your outlook on recovery.

Get the sense of community you need and the support of health professionals who care. 

If you or a loved one are struggling with meth abuse or addiction, reach out to Soba Recovery Center. The sooner you seek help, the quicker you can start feeling like yourself again.



Methamphetamine | DEA

Current Research on Methamphetamine: Epidemiology, Medical and Psychiatric Effects, Treatment, and Harm Reduction Efforts | NCBI

What are the Long-term Effects of Methamphetamine Misuse? | National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA)

​​How Methamphetamine Became a Key Part of Nazi Military Strategy | TIME

An Open Letter About My Addiction



I had been struggling with drug abuse and addiction for years. My drug of choice was alcohol. I didn’t realize just how bad the problem was. When I look back on it, it seems like it began with a glass of wine before bed. Gradually, this glass of wine got bigger. It grew to the size of souvenir sports cups that they sell at stadiums. I used to tell myself, and my wife, that it wasn’t that bad. It was mostly ice. I knew this was a lie.

The problem got progressively worse. My kids grew up and left the house. I felt as though I just wasn’t needed anymore. Sure, the kids called home from time to time; however, it was always to ask for money. I felt like my life had run its course. I started to drink more. I was bored. That was the honest truth. I was simply bored and alcohol made it easier to pass the time. 

It then got out of control. One night, I was looking over the receipt from vacation and realized that, somehow, I had charged 90 alcoholic drinks to the room in the span of 14 days. I tried to blame it on my oldest child. He was 21 at the time. I don’t know why I thought that would work. He stayed in a different room and didn’t drink despite being in college. 

I hit rock bottom when one night my wife came home and found me passed out next to the bed. She had to call the doctor who lived next door for help. I woke up in the intensive care unit with a breathing tube down my throat. That was my rock bottom. It was time to ask forhelp. Little did I realize just how much my life would change after I got sober. 

My Relationships with My Friends and Family Got Better

Look, I’m not here to tell you that the journey to sobriety is going to be easy. Addiction recovery is hard. There were times when I fought with my family. I didn’t want to go to an inpatient facility. My life was at home; however, it was important. When I finally took my sobriety seriously, my relationship with my friends and family got better. They got better because I no longer felt like I had anything to hide. I no longer felt like they were always looking to see if I was drinking again. I was able to let my guard down and just be myself without anything to worry about. This made my life so much easier. The guilt was gone.

I Discovered Who I Am

If you are struggling with sobriety and want to take the path to addiction recovery, you need to know that who you are when you are under the influence of drugs and alcohol is not you. You are a totally different person from that individual. When you are under the influence of drugs and alcohol, you are going to do things that are totally out of character. You are going to say things you don’t mean. You are going to engage in activities that you wouldn’t otherwise try. Instead, you are a totally different person when you find sobriety. During your road to addiction recovery from alcoholism and drug abuse, you’re going to find out just who that person is.

I Found Out What I Wanted

For years, all I cared about was how long it was going to be until I had my next drink. I would count down the hours. I would count down the minutes. I would even count down the seconds as I filled my glass. I couldn’t wait to satiate the addiction growing inside of me. Once I conquered my addiction, I found out what I truly wanted. I no longer wanted to have that next drink. Instead, I wanted to travel the world. I wanted to see my kids graduate school. I wanted to spend more time with my family members and friends. I wanted to see the world clearly for the first time. I realized that all of this was possible because I had found my sobriety. You can as well.

How My Journey to Sobriety Began

My journey to sobriety started with a single step. It starts by asking for help. You should ask for help as well. Lean on your family members and friends but also appreciate the role that trained professionals are going to play. Soba Texas is a drug & alcohol treatment program located in San Antonio, TX. Soba Texas offers a unique luxury program that combines traditional treatment and modern therapies to assist clients in conquering their addiction. Contact us today!