People in your life may be concerned about your drinking habits or your drug use. Maybe concerned family members make comments when you go for one more beer at parties or have a second glass of wine for dinner, but does this mean you need to seek treatment? How do you know if you’re really ready for recovery? Recovery is a personal journey that will look different to everyone from start to finish.
It can be difficult to assess when you should ask for help. While it’s important to take input from your friends and family, they all have biases that influence their opinion. You have to do what is right for you. But how can you determine that? There are various signs that you might be ready to start your recovery journey.
Understanding Symptoms to Know if You’re Ready for Recovery
When you picture a person with substance use disorder (SUD), you probably imagine the worst-case scenario. A person with severe withdrawal symptoms who prioritizes using above all else. However, SUD does not look the same in every person. Some variables might include the substance the person is using and specific personality traits. Generally, the criteria for being diagnosed with SUD involve the following:
Impaired Control (Mild Consumption)
- Consuming the substance in larger quantities and for longer amounts of time than intended
- Persistent desire to cut down or stop using but failure to do so
- Most of your time is spent consuming or recovering from the effects of the substance
- Experiencing cravings or desire to use
Social Impairment (Moderate Consumption)
- Substance use impairs the ability to fulfill responsibilities and work, family, or school obligations
- Continued use of substances despite social or interpersonal problems
- Reducing or withdrawing from recreational, social, or occupational activities because of substance use
Risk Impairment (Moderate-Severe Consumption)
- Multiple instances of using substances in an unsafe environment
- Continue usage despite knowing that it is causing or exasperating physical or psychological problems
Pharmacologic (Severe Consumption)
- Requiring an increasingly higher dose of a substance to achieve the same effects due to a built tolerance
- Experiencing withdrawal symptoms that are caused by periods of abstaining from substance use
Why You Shouldn’t Wait Until You Feel Ready for Recovery
You may not “feel” ready for recovery until you are in it. It’s a difficult process that lasts a lifetime and requires you to reflect on your thoughts and behaviors. Everyone deserves a chance to start their life over. Facilities like Restoration Recovery Center can help you live a happy, healthier, and fuller life. Don’t let the fear of change hold you back. The earlier you seek intervention, the more immediate effect it will have on your mental and physical health. However, even if you’re at the most severe stage of SUD, it is never too late to ask for help.
The Benefits of Early Intervention
The earlier you seek intervention the easier your recovery will be. Seeking early intervention can even prevent the onset of symptoms. If you seek treatment early, your recovery journey will be easier because you will likely not have to mitigate severe withdrawal symptoms and will be less hindered by the physical side effects of SUD.
The Harm of the ‘Rock Bottom’ Myth
You can’t wait until you hit “rock bottom” to be ready for recovery because it doesn’t exist. Some people might have “rock bottom” moments where they realized that they needed help, but this moment will be different for everyone. Even once a person declares a moment in their life to be “rock bottom,” that doesn’t guarantee that they won’t ever hit a new one. Don’t worry if you have or haven’t hit this point; if you feel like your substance use is affecting how you function in your day-to-day life, don’t be afraid to reach out for help.
Other Signs You’re Ready for Recovery
A SUD diagnosis can be broken down into more specific diagnoses. For instance, if you qualify for a SUD diagnosis, you may also qualify for alcohol use disorder (AUD), opioid use disorder (OUD), or marijuana use disorder (MUD), to name a few. Many rehabilitation facilities like Restoration Recovery Center have various recovery programs that are substance-specific. The symptoms for each of these disorders are more specific than SUD, and knowing what they are can help you better understand where you are on the SUD spectrum.
Some other generally reported signs of SUD may include:
- Obsessive thoughts
- Disregard of harm
- Loss of control
- Isolating or being secretive about activities
- Financial problems
- Legal problems
- Disrupted sleep
- Avoiding talking about substance use
If your friends and family are raising concerns about your substance use, take the time to analyze your substance use patterns. While this does not mean you necessarily have SUD, it’s always good to check in with yourself and examine your thoughts and behaviors. Analyze how they are impacting your ability to function in your day-to-day life.
Understanding the signs and symptoms of SUD can help you understand if you’re ready to begin your recovery journey and seek treatment. SUD will look different for every person, so only you can decide if starting your recovery journey is right for you. At Restoration Recovery Center, we offer a variety of treatments for various types of substance use disorders. Our mental health professionals can work closely with you to develop a treatment plan that will meet your recovery needs. If you or someone you know is struggling with substance use, call (888) 290-0925 to learn how Restoration Recovery Center can help you restore your life’s purpose and heal from addiction.