Health Issues In Those We Love

Sep 18, 2015
Tagged with: Health Issues In Those We Love

In certain circumstances, we find loved ones in the act of submitting to their addictions, or we may at least be around them when they are under the influence and can’t deny their condition.

Yet, many addicts live alone. Sometimes isolation is the cause of the addiction, and sometimes the addiction creates the isolation. Either way, when we may be hundreds or thousands of miles away from a loved one who is dealing with addiction, it can be much harder to realize the depth (or even the existence) of a substance abuse problem.If we don’t catch on, there may be no one else to come to their aid, and the worst could happen to your relative or friend before anyone knows there’s a problem.

As a result, it’s critically important–indeed, a matter of life and death–that we are alert to the signs of addiction. And if we are far away geographically, we must be doubly aware of what could be happening. Below are just a few things that can clue us in, sometimes distantly, to a substance abuse problem.

Reversion To Previous Addiction Behaviors

Relapse is an unfortunate reality for many addicts. The draw of an old lifestyle can sometimes be more than their resistance can sustain. The Pines Recovery, like many treatment facilities, will do everything in their power to prevent patients returning due to relapsing.

Relapsing can be very familiar to you as a friend or family member. The distinctive behaviors you witnessed during previous addictions can emerge again, and they can be a very reliable indicator that there has been a setback.

Fortunately, there is some room for success here. Many people who are secretly sustaining an addiction are tougher to confront about it because of shame and guilt. But someone who has previously acknowledged the issue and gone through treatment may be easier to discuss it with, and subsequently can be easier to get into treatment.

Unexplained Financial Struggles

Money troubles can strike anyone at any age. There’s nothing alarming about a shortage of funds. But when the most common sources of monetary strain–health problems, divorce, loss of work, and so forth–can be eliminated, there could be a money drain from an addiction issue.

When we deal with adults, it can be difficult to approach the subject. Sometimes they will offer information–“I would like to come visit, Mom, but I just can’t afford it right now”–while other signs may come from elsewhere, like disconnected phones or declining hygiene.

Taken alone, a lack of money is no guarantee of an addiction. But when it’s seen alongside other signals, it can at least be a reason to begin digging for further evidence of an issue. Try to talk to a significant other, or with co-workers. Alternatively, go directly to your loved one with an indirect conversation, maybe about someone else’s financial struggles. Sometimes they just want a door to open, and when it does, an addiction could ultimately be acknowledged.

Changes In Behavior

This heading sounds vague, but it’s a good catch-all for a variety of signs of addiction. The chemical changes in the brain of an addict–particularly the craving triggers that cause them to put everything else aside–can manifest themselves in a variety of behavioral changes. Recognizing these can give us early notice that something is amiss.

The first thing to do is to establish the person’s norms. Remember that there isn’t any certain way that all people can be expected to behave in certain situations. For example, stress may cause one person to eat and another to have no appetite.

If your daughter has always been an adventurous type that would slip out early from work on a Friday and take an impromptu trip to a distant destination, there is no reason to suspect a problem just because she has done it again this weekend. But if she’s always been fanatically punctual about work and suddenly begins dragging in late and extending lunch, you may have cause for concern.

So a wide array of signals resides under this roof. New friends, frequent trips to unexplained places, and even bullying can all indicate lifestyle changes that could include addiction.

Addiction is deadly. When someone we love may be facing this mortal enemy, we have an obligation to do everything we can to detect and help control it while there is still hope. Be in tune to those you love, and overcome your own fears of uncomfortable confrontations. The stakes are simply too high.

Author: Chris Meloni



  • bobl07

    Serious addiction can lead to various health issues. Thank you for sharing this information.