Is my loved one addicted to opioids?

MastHead Outline
September 7, 2021

Signs your family member may have opioid disorder include: 

  • Use of prescription opioid medication long after recovery
  • Frequent medical appointments with different physicians 
  • Irregular mood changes
  • Drastic change in behavior
  • Difficulty maintaining gainful employment 
  • Disinterest in usual hobbies and activities 
  • Withdrawal from social circles and friends
  • Use of opioids outside of directed prescribing 
  • Poor decision making
  • Lack of worry about negative consequences 
  • Erratic sleep patterns
  • Financial problems, borrowing money often 
  • Secretiveness, leaving home for long periods
  • New friends or social group
  • Decreased personal hygiene or interest in personal appearance 

Increased risk of opioid addiction can be attributed to: 

  • Younger men ages 20 to 30 years old
  • Living under high stress, poverty, unemployment 
  • Family history of addiction 
  • Legal issues such as incarceration, DWIs
  • Surrounded by high-risk individuals and environments 
  • Struggles with mental illness
  • Past trauma or abuse including sexual, physical, emotional 
  • Thrill-seeking behavior
  • War veteran or struggling with PTSD due to deployment 
  • Previous severe injury where opioids were prescribed 

These risk factors reflect most data that has been collected and studied surrounding opioid use disorder. Still, addiction can afflict people from all walks of life regardless of gender, age, and social status.