Are you or someone in your family battling a problem with substances?

If you’re worried you may be fighting a substance misuse or abuse problem, it’s important that you get to the bottom of it. Failure to identify the problem will delay your ability to get help.

Although both cases require attention and action, understanding the key differences between drug misuse and drug abuse will help you devise the best strategy for recovery.

Take a closer look at each so you can make an informed decision.

What Is Substance Misuse?

Anytime you take a prescription medication differently from the provided instructions, it’s considered drug misuse. Over time, this can lead to addiction and affect your health.

Examples of misuse include taking a prescription painkiller for a regular headache or an anti-anxiety medicine for nausea.

In each of these cases, the medicine was likely legally obtained, but it’s being taken irresponsibly. The user isn’t necessarily trying to get high. But his attempt to self-medicate can be dangerous.

Other signs of substance misuse include taking the drug at the wrong time or using someone else’s prescription meds. It also involves stopping a medication before the treatment ends, and forgetting to take medicine on a regular schedule.

In each of these cases, the patient may experience harmful side effects that he could otherwise avoid. Even worse, he puts himself in danger of not recovering from whatever he was taking medicine for in the first place.

What Is Substance Abuse?

Substance abuse differs from misuse mostly in the intention of the user.

A person misusing drugs may either be forgetful or poorly informed. Someone with a substance abuse problem is looking to get high from whatever they’re taking.

The drugs in question may or may not be prescribed by a doctor, but are usually illegally obtained. Substance abusers are after feelings of euphoria, relaxation, or escape.

They develop a dependency on the substance, and often feel like they need it to “feel normal.” As a result, most drug abusers will need increasing amounts of the drug to experience the same high.

Overcoming substance abuse requires a comprehensive approach that addresses both the user’s physical and psychological dependency. With proper treatment, recovery is possible.

You Can Conquer Addiction

Misuse and abuse of drugs are both potentially dangerous and addictive. Understanding the different causes and manifestations can help you get the proper treatment you need.

If you or someone you love has been afflicted by misuse or abuse of drugs, there is hope. You can conquer addiction and reclaim your life.

At Compass Recovery Center, we work with you to uncover the underlying cause of your addiction. Our team will develop a personalized plan to get you back on track.

We know that everyone is different. Your path to recovery won’t look the same as someone else’s.

From education and therapy to sober living communities, we have different methods for addressing your needs. Don’t fight a drug problem alone.

Come visit or contact us today so we can help you live your best life!