How Can I Assist a Friend or Family Member Who Is Suffering From Addiction?

How Can I Assist a Friend or Family Member Who Is Suffering From Addiction?

By Jennifer McDougall

It’s difficult to see a friend or family member struggle with addiction. There are, nevertheless, several things you may do and methods you can assist with.

It might be difficult to tell whether a friend or a family member has a drug or alcohol addiction issue at first since they are likely trying to disguise their actions or actively deny they have a problem.

Moodiness, an abrupt change in temperament, unpredictable conduct, unexpected loss or gain of weight, flaking on plans or not following through on commitments, issues at work or with friends and family, and an overall shift in personality or attitude are all warning indicators to look for.

How Can I Assist a Friend or Family Member Who Is Suffering From Addiction?

After seeing these behaviors and confirming that your friend is using drugs or alcohol, the first and most essential thing you can do is avoid encouraging their habit. You’re simply escalating the problem if you go out drinking with them or hang out with them when they’re using.

Instead of criticizing your friend or family member, approach them gently and let them know your worries, and be prepared to listen to them with an open mind. Let them know you’re willing and able to help them and that you’re always available. Give them clear evidence of why you’re concerned, and let them know that you believe their substance usage is negatively impacting their life and relationships.

Myth: Inquiring about a friend’s depression, anger, or suicidal feelings puts them at a greater danger of hurting themselves or others.

Fact: Asking thought-provoking questions demonstrates your concern, which opens the door to getting the individual the support they require.

Know how to spot the warning symptoms of suicidality or depression in oneself, a friend, coworker, or family member.

Signs Someone is Struggling with Drug or Alcohol Addiction

  • Personality Change
  • Irritability
  • Withdrawn
  • Inadequate Self-Care / Poor Hygiene
  • Hopelessness
  • Increased interest or mention of getting drunk or high
  • Depression
  • Bloodshot eyes
  • Occasional need for money
  • Failure to follow through on responsibilities
  • Lost of interest in things that used to spark excitement in their lives
  • Interpersonal relationship issues
  • Trouble sleeping or oversleeps more frequently
  • Lacks motivation
  • Stealing medicine, money, or other objects that don’t belong to them
  • Participates in reckless behavior such as driving under the influence
  • Frequently surrounds themselves with bad influences
  • Late-night confessions of troubles, sadness, depression, or anxiety

How to Help Someone With Drug or Alcohol Addiction

Be an attentive ear. Check up on the person you care about and inquire about their well-being. You don’t have to be an expert or a qualified professional to show someone you care.

Know the phone numbers for hotlines, local police, and 911 in an emergency. When it comes to your life or the lives of others, you can never be too careful.

Share your resources with your family and friends. Asking for help becomes less stigmatized the more open you are about sharing unpleasant ideas, feelings, and situations.

Use social media to spread good ideas about solutions and self-care. Demonstrate to others that self-love and mental wellness are equally as essential as physical health.

Don’t be judgemental, but rather a lending shoulder to lean on.

Allow your loved ones to suffer the repercussions of their choices, regardless of how difficult this may be.

Do not feel responsible for your loved one’s substance abuse; it is their responsibility to address the issue.

Discuss rehab and addiction treatment options.

Don’t Wait. Get Help Today at Passages Rehab

Call Passages Addiction Treatment Centers today if you or a loved one is battling an addiction to drugs and alcohol. Our admissions department is available 24/7 and can be reached directly by calling our toll-free number at (888) 397–0112. We look forward to speaking with you soon.

Featured photo by KaLisa Veer

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