Drug Rehabilitation Blog

man smoking cigarette

The 7 Habits of Highly Addicted People

Posted by Myra Davis to Addiction

Every drug addict has a tell. What do I mean? Like amateur gamblers might cough, blink, or smile when they hold a winning hand, addicts show signs of their addiction. Your addicted coworker, spouse, or friend tries really hard to hide the truth, but you’ll see reality sooner or later if you watch them long enough. Don’t believe me? Look for one or more of the following seven habits of highly addicted people and see for yourself.

man smoking cigarette
Photo by Enrico (Flickr)

1. Withdrawing From Loved Ones

Addicts are consumed by their substance of choice, and they spend the majority of their time looking for or using drugs. That means they’ll typically skip social gatherings or will either arrive late or rush to leave early. Don’t expect addicts to return emails, chat with you on the phone, or meet you for lunch, either.

2. Acting Secretive

No addicts I know want to be caught. Instead, they do everything they can to conceal their activities. Addicts are experts at guarding their phones and computers, lying about where they go and what they do, and resisting anyone who questions what they’re doing. They’re the best undercover operatives you’ll ever meet.

3. Abandoning Hobbies

Activities that used to hold the addict’s attention no longer hold appeal. That’s because addicts either don’t have money for hobbies or are too busy getting high to care about painting, biking, or gardening. Depression, anxiety, and lack of motivation, three common ailments that affect addicts, could also factor into why the addicts you know abandon the hobbies they used to love.

4. Skipping Work or School

Regular attendance at work or school isn’t a typical habit you’ll find addicts employing. They’d rather party or sleep off a hangover than force their bodies and minds to function at work or school. Whether they arrive late, leave early, do shoddy work, or call in sick, addicts will habitually skip work or school with little regard for the consequences.

5. Spending Cash Quickly

If you notice someone burning through cash like they’re on fire, they might be addicted to drugs. Saving money isn’t a habit addicts typically display. Instead, they spend cash as quickly as they can make, borrow, beg, or steal it.

6. Engaging in Risky Behavior

Driving fast, jumping off of cliffs, and acting promiscuously can give an addict a high just like their favorite drug. Drugs can also give addicts a feeling of invincibility or paranoia. I’m not saying that all extreme sports participants are addicts, but if you see a friend or loved one turn risky behavior into a habit, you could be looking at an addict.

7. Neglecting Their Personal Appearance

Some addicts become hyper-vigilant about taking care of their personal appearance because they don’t want anyone to know that they’re using. Others could care less about what they wear and whether or not they wash their bodies. Plus, addicts often can’t hide the physical effects of drug use, including weight loss, bloodshot eyes, unusual odors, persistent cough, or meth mouth.

Does your loved one exhibit one or more of these seven habits? I understand that all addicts are different, but these signs are highly common. Be aware of them as you interact with addicts in your life and you’ll be better equipped to help.

1 Comment

  • Walter

    Well I thought that this was a very interesting article as what it does is lays out the different behaviors that you can definitely see. In retrospect, I remember one of my family members who were exhibiting some of these signs, although I was either too stupid or blind to it to see it at the time. The arriving late and always being secretive, etc. This is not something that i saw very quickly, but like I said in looking back I can see where I definitely had all of these signs when I had a problem. I was always sneaking around and finding out more ways I could get away with what I was doing. In looking at it now, I was not the secret agent that I thought that I was being. If there had been someone else in my life that had the confront to take up the problem, my drug use would have probably ended sooner than it did, as that was what it took to get me to stop doing all the bad stuff. I highly recommend looking out for these behaviors if you suspect that ou have a loved one with a problem and then confronting them on it. It could save a life!

  • Write a Comment

    Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

    addiction resources

    Addiction Treatment: Why Resources, Not Rhetoric Are Needed

    Addiction has been a continuous issue within our society for decades. More and more individuals fall into the deadly grasps …

    at-home detox

    The Risks Associated With At-Home Detox

    There can be a variety of risks that are associated with addiction and substance use.  Detox is a period which can pose …

    summer sobriety

    Sober for Summer: How to Stay Strong in Your Recovery

    Summer is a time of a variety of enjoyable events, including parties, socializing, and many outdoor activities.  But, this …