image description

Signs and Symptoms of Addiction

Addiction impacts every aspect of your life, including your physical health, mental and emotional health, social life, and core values. The signs and symptoms of addiction can be biological, psychological, social and spiritual, and most people with a problem will exhibit signs in several if not all of these areas. These areas are often called the Four Pillars of Addiction and Healing.

Biological Signs and Symptoms

Biological signs include changes to physical health and appearance and include, but are not limited to, the following.

  • Sudden increases or decreases in activity or energy level
  • Weight loss or weight gain
  • A lack of personal hygiene
  • Strange body odor
  • Changes in the health of skin or teeth
  • Red, watery, glassy eyes or a runny nose that is not due to cold or allergies
  • Changes in eating habits
  • Change in sleeping patterns
  • Feeling sick or hung over
  • Lacking out or forgetting what happened while under the influence
  • Using increasing amount of a substance
  • Developing diseases and conditions related to your bad habit
  • Inability to quit without experiencing cravings or withdrawal

Psychological Signs and Symptoms

Addiction takes a real toll on emotional health and can result in many psychological symptoms. Here are some of the many signs and symptoms associated with problem behavior.

  • Mood swings
  • Feelings of depression
  • Irritability
  • Anger
  • Negative attitude

Thom Kessler, LMFT, RAS