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What is Addiction and Substance Abuse?

An addiction is an urge to use drugs or alcohol and it is hard to control or stop. If you use alcohol, or drugs like marijuana (weed), heroin, and cocaine, they easily can become addictive.

Substance abuse means that use of alcohol or drugs has become out of control or inappropriate but has not necessarily gotten to the point of an addiction.

Though any drug taken recklessly or outside of a doctor's supervision can become addictive and harmful to your health, addiction education facts can help you recognize in yourself or others when help is needed.

Signs of a Substance Use Disorder

From drinking alcohol to using hallucinogens, drugs have the potential to alter a user's brain chemistry and damage their body. One of our goals at Turning Point of Tampa is addiction education for those who have a substance use disorder, as well as their family members and friends.

  • Being chronically late to work, poor work performance, receiving poor performance reviews and appearing tired and disinterested in work duties
  • Disinterest in school activities or difficulties at school, declining grades or general problems in daily life
  • Changes in physical appearance, such as a lack of interest in grooming
  • Altered behavior, such as an increased desire for privacy
  • Drastic changes in relationships
  • A noticeable lack of energy when performing daily activities
  • Spending more money than usual or requesting to borrow money
  • Issues with financial management, such as not paying bills on time
  • Changes in appetite, such as a decreased appetite and associated weight loss
  • Bloodshot eyes, poor skin tone, and appearing tired or run down
  • Defensiveness when asked about substance use
Substance Use Disorder and Addiction Education | Turning Point of Tampa

Addiction Treatment at Turning Point of Tampa

Since 1987, Turning Point of Tampa has been a family-owned facility focused on 12-Step oriented, quality care for men and women 18 years or older. Located on one campus, our programs feature highly credentialed staff. Our staff have many years of training, providing structure and years of knowledge on addiction and drug abuse.

We teach clients how to practice 12-Step principles, in a licensed, residential setting where group counseling is the keystone. Our goal is to help clients achieve long term recovery, free from alcohol or drugs.

At Turning Point of Tampa, we provide treatment services to those who suffer from addiction, eating disorders, and dual-diagnosis issues.

Our recovery programs promote the recognition of substance use disorders and through training show that one can learn to live in recovery free from active addiction. We maintain a strong focus on addiction education, special populations, and understand the connection between drug abuse and mental health. We welcome those who want to address their substance use and mental health issues.

We believe to reduce stigma around those who need treatment, we offer more information on the benefit of addiction education and treatment. We participate in the community, through addiction education, continuing education, and by understanding the consequences of one's actions - lives change and communities change. Addiction treatment is often the steppingstone for a person lost in drug addiction to come out the other side and end up in graduate school where they in turn can help others change their lives.

Overcoming Addiction

Overcoming addiction is a multi-step challenge that involves tackling both physical and mental behavior patterns, but a vital first step in that battle is education. If you believe you are suffering from addiction, take a moment to read through the information below to better understand signs and symptoms.

If you believe a loved one is struggling with addiction, the information below can help you begin a conversation about the risks involved with substance abuse.

Benefits of Drug and Alcohol Addiction Education

Addiction is a disease that affects everyone differently. Learning the facts about addiction can aid you in controlling a substance abuse relationship in your life.

The addiction education process aims at teaching addiction and addiction-related behaviors, to help adults and the community cope by ensuring appropriate social and psychological protection from harm. The person can create strategies to avoid negative peer pressure associated with drug and alcohol. Once they find out the physical dangers of alcohol and other drugs it becomes more acceptable to avoid it.

Types of Substance Use Disorders

There are many types of addictions that range from a legal substance to illicit drugs that are found on the street. Below are the most common substances that result in inappropriate drug use or addiction.

Opioids

Opioids are powerful painkillers that affect the central nervous system and can lead to extreme dependence and even death. Other effects can include nausea, unconsciousness, slowed breathing, and risk of heart attack or coma. People with an opioid use disorder may experience a potent effect on the brain because the drug is highly addictive.

Sedatives/Depressants

Sedatives, hypnotics, and depressants affect the brain and nervous system and make users feel drowsy or less anxious. Chronic users of these drugs can develop a tolerance that requires increasing dosages, which can lead to dizziness, lethargy, and reduced brain functioning.

Stimulants

Stimulants, also known as "uppers," raise activity within the brain and body. Side effects can include irritability, inability to sleep, and weight loss. Over time, stimulant users can experience chronic insomnia, difficulty breathing, rapid heartbeat, nausea, and unconsciousness.

Marijuana

Marijuana and hashish are both products of the cannabis plant. Both drugs affect the central nervous system and decrease coordination, eyesight, and concentration. Long-term use can lead to chronic conditions including asthma, sinusitis, and lack of concentration.

Stimulants

Stimulants, also known as "uppers," raise activity within the brain and body. Side effects can include irritability, inability to sleep, and weight loss. Over time, stimulant users can experience chronic insomnia, difficulty breathing, rapid heartbeat, nausea, and unconsciousness.

Inhalants

Inhalants are chemical compounds found within household items like glue, cleaning products, and lighter fluid. They can cause severe headaches, nausea, unconsciousness, and damage to the respiratory tract. Long-term use increases the risk of organ damage.

Club Drugs

Club drugs are odorless, flavorless, and colorless, making them common in cases of sexual assault. These drugs are created in illegal laboratories, making their purity and potency very difficult to predict. As a result, they can cause severe health issues, including memory loss and cognitive harm.

Hallucinogens

Hallucinogens alter sensory perceptions, leading to hallucinatory experiences. These drugs can also cause disorganized thinking, blurred vision, dizziness, nausea, and increased heart rate. Because they affect a person's perception, they can also lead to risk-taking and potentially harmful behavior.

Getting Help

At Turning Point of Tampa, our team members share a singular focus – dedication to our clients. If you need additional information about any of the drugs listed or simply need guidance on your next steps, we are here to help. The consequences of addiction can be detrimental, but there is hope with Turning Point of Tampa.

Contact us anytime for you or your loved one, at 1-866-901-4061 with any concerns and for support. We offer a free, confidential conversation to those looking for resources or for more information on our treatment programs.

The Point is Recovery Podcast

Join us for conversations with advocates, experts and people in long term recovery as we work to end the stigma that has long plagued addiction & mental health. We are passionate about recovery and are excited to share our experience, strength & hope with you.

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