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Emotional Signs of Addiction

woman struggles with emotional signs of addiction

Aside from the many physical consequences of addiction, substance abuse can lead to mental and emotional side effects.  These symptoms may be concealed by the user or can become so severe that friends, family, and coworkers begin to take notice.  Once these issues begin to occur, it is usually a sign that the user should seek professional treatment for substance abuse disorder.  Addiction recovery involves multiple strategies for treating the emotional damage done by drugs and alcohol, both for substance abusers and their loved ones. 

Deteriorating Relationships

People experiencing addiction often have a difficult time maintaining their relationships.  They may begin to act selfishly or become overly emotional and angry. Addiction can cause individuals to neglect their social obligations, failing to return calls or show up to pre-planned events.  Loved ones who are not aware of the substance abuse may feel hurt or betrayed by an addicted person’s behavior.  


Depression can often lead to substance abuse, but may also show up as a symptom of addiction.  Extreme sadness or moodiness may occur as a result of drug or alcohol use or may present itself when an addicted person is prevented from drinking or using drugs.  Over time, substance abuse can worsen depression to dangerous levels, making an addicted person lose hope and self-esteem altogether.

Deceitful Behavior

Even the most honest of individuals may begin to lie to their friends and family after developing an addiction.  They may lie to cover up their substance abuse, or to make excuses for their inability to fulfill obligations. For example, someone addicted to alcohol may begin to hide bottles in their house or lie about how many drinks they have had.  It is important to remember that this behavior is the result of an addiction and not a true reflection of a person’s character.

If you can identify these symptoms and behaviors in yourself or a loved one, it may be time to reach out for help.  At Arbor Behavioral Healthcare, you will meet knowledgeable, compassionate professionals that understand addiction in all its forms.  The Arbor uses an integrative and holistic approach to treat addiction and mental health issues. No treatment is one-size-fits-all, and at The Arbor, you will have a team of experts prepared to create your customized treatment plan.  We offer care for your mind, body, and spirit so that you can heal from the inside out and look forward to a lifetime of sobriety and wellness. If you are ready to take the first step in your recovery, please call us at 844-413-2690.