Signs of Substance Abuse in a Family Member

If someone is engaged in substance abuse in your family they usually try to keep their behavior a secret. However there are tell-tale signs that they might be user.

These symptoms include:
• Bloodshot eyes or pupils that are “pinned” or dilated
• Changes in appetite that result in sudden weight loss
• Bad breath and unusual body or clothing smells
• Deterioration of physical appearance and grooming
• Clumsiness and impaired coordination
• Tremors
• Slurred speech and an inability to be able to focus
• Always in need of money
• Engaging in secretive or suspicious behaviors
• Leaving people on a “need to know” basis and being uncommunicative
• Frequently getting into trouble including fights and accidents
• Suddenly changing friends, hobbies and places to hang out
• Sudden mood swings, irritability or angry outbursts
• Unexplained changes in personality or attitude
• Being unusually giddy or hyperactive
• Appearing lethargic or spaced out
• Expressing anxiety, fear or paranoia for no good reason
• If the individual suspected of being into substance abuse is a teenager then look for these signs of addiction as well
• Denying you entrance to his or her room, drawers or certain possessions
• Being secretive about friends and whereabouts
• A sudden interest in offbeat fashions or music that seem out of character
• Avoiding eye contact with you or even making direct eye contact with you while you know the person is telling a lie
• Skipping class and declining grades
• Drugs are missing from your filing cabinet
• Money is missing from your purse
• Your teen spends a great deal of time sleeping
• Your child seems unusually withdrawn and depressed and isolates from friends and family
• Using a lot of incense, perfume or air freshener to conceal the smells from using drugs
• Uses eye drops frequently to mask the look of bloodshot eyes or dilated pupils
• Uses mouthwash a great dealt to conceal smoke or alcohol use.

If an adult or teen in your family has any of the above symptoms of substance abuse it might be time to seek professional drug treatment center for help or counseling or consider talking that person in going to rehab.