What Are the Signs of Drug Addiction?

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If you or someone you love is struggling with mood swings, money problems, irritability, and similar symptoms, you might wonder if these changes represent symptoms of addiction. Some of the common symptoms of drug addiction are physical symptoms–which happen while under the influence or during withdrawal–and these can include shaking, chills, muscle pain, or cramps. 

But many of the symptoms that a family member or close friend might notice extend to behavioral issues such as severe mood swings, paranoia, sudden lying or stealing, or experiencing legal issues because of drug use. An individual struggling with addiction might notice that in addition to their mood swings and changes in behavior, they keep forgetting to do important things like go to work or pick up their kids from school because they are focused exclusively on drug use. Thankfully, no matter what, there are ways you can get help with The Differents, an addiction treatment center in Nevada

Physical Symptoms of Addiction

Physical symptoms of addiction have the widest range and depend on the substances being used. For example, someone might experience:

  • Fever
  • Runny nose
  • Bloodshot eyes
  • Itchiness
  • Shaking
  • Vomiting
  • Nausea
  • Chills 
  • Lethargy
  • Mood swings
  • Depression
  • Irritability 

Behavioral Signs of Drug Addiction

The symptoms of addiction might vary from one substance to the next in physical manifestations, but there are similar behavioral signs. 

Mood Swings

Mood swings and irritability without cause happen often. Someone you know might be an otherwise even-keeled person, but soon, they start to show signs of drug addiction like rapid mood shifts, being particularly irritable for no reason, or snapping at small things that don’t matter. 

Lack of Responsibility

Another common feature of drug addiction is a lack of responsibility. Individuals might forget to do important things for work or personal life because they are preoccupied with obtaining, using, or recovering from drugs.

This can include being late to work regularly or even skipping work without calling in or having an explanation.


Some substances lead to extreme paranoia. This can manifest similarly to mood swings, and someone with an addiction might make accusations of people taking things from them, conspiring against them, or trying to harm them. 

In other cases, individuals might demonstrate paranoia about their environment, checking windows continually, keeping doors locked and curtains shut, and always hesitating when someone comes to the door. 

Lying or Hiding

It is not uncommon for someone dealing with addiction to start lying or hiding information about where they were or how they got money. This lying can happen when someone tries to mask their addiction, and it might not always make sense or be believable. 

Other Symptoms of Addiction

Other signs of drug addiction are interrelated, such as financial problems, bad habits, lying, or stealing. 

Financial Strain

It is not uncommon for people struggling with addiction to start to experience financial strain. That strain can come in many forms, such as:

  • Spending money designated for bills on drugs or alcohol
  • Always needing money despite having a job or being given money recently
  • Stealing in order to buy more drugs or alcohol or selling things to get drugs or alcohol

Legal Issues

This financial strain can be exacerbated by legal issues like:

  • Arrests for possession
  • Driving under the influence

These legal issues come with fines as well as potential jail time, probation, or court-ordered classes and volunteering.

Many of the most significant symptoms of addiction revolve around the development of tolerance. An individual might start taking more and more of a particular substance in order to achieve the same effect. Moreover, that same person might try to stop or reduce their drug use and find that no matter what they do, they can’t seem to quit. It’s not uncommon for individuals to reach a point where they truly want to quit, and yet, despite understanding all of the negative consequences addiction has, they are unable to. 

Getting Help with Symptoms of Addiction

Once you notice signs of addiction in yourself or a loved one, it is important to reach out for help. The Differents offers clients several levels of care, including PHP, IOP, and programs specific to groups like first responders. 

Our Reno substance abuse treatment programs are intended to help those in need with a remote, exclusive location nestled in the Sierra Nevada Mountains, just minutes from Lake Tahoe. The serene backdrop makes it easy for clients to step away from their daily stress and focus on turning attention inward and rebuilding what addiction may have broken. 

Overall, the symptoms of addiction can look different from one substance to the next but revolve around physical symptoms, behavioral symptoms, and other symptoms. Learning to recognize them can help you decide when it is time to get help.Call The Differents today to learn more about common signs of addiction and how our trusted drug rehab in Reno can help.

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