How to Help Someone With Alcoholism

how to help someone with alcoholism


Are you concerned someone you care about is drinking too much? Watching someone you care about in the throes of alcoholism can be hard. You might feel overwhelmed, not knowing what to do or whether the person would even be willing to accept your help. You may also feel like your relationship with this person is deteriorating due to their drinking. Although addressing a loved one’s alcoholism or alcohol abuse can be both challenging and difficult, there is a way and help is available. 

Signs Your Loved One Is Struggling With Alcoholism

The term “alcoholism” is a word to describe the struggle of alcohol use disorder. A person who battles alcoholism has a dependence on alcohol that is twofold because it is both physical and psychological. People battling alcohol use disorder struggle with controlling their drinking habits or opt to continue drinking despite the fact that their alcohol use causes problems. These problems may interfere with their social relationships, their professional lives or even their own health. 

Cases of alcoholism can range from mild to severe. Mild cases can develop into more serious cases over time. Early intervention and treatment is important for those with alcohol use disorder for the best outcome. 

It can be difficult to recognize the signs of a problem with alcohol in someone you care about, especially since the effects of the substance vary greatly from one person to another. There is no defined amount of alcohol a person has to drink in order to be diagnosed with an alcohol use disorder, rather, the condition is determined by how it affects a person’s life. 

You may be able to identify a drinking problem in your loved one if they:

  • Often binge drink or drink more than they intend to
  • Have mood swings, aggression or other concerning changes in mood behavior
  • Can’t remember what they said or did while using alcohol, or black out
  • Regularly neglect their responsibilities in life because they are either drinking or recovering from drinking
  • Continue using alcohol even if it causes problems in relationships with others
  • Lie about drinking or try to cover how much they are drinking
  • Use alcohol to self-medicate other mental health problems, such as depression, anxiety or bipolar disorder

If you want to know how to help someone with alcoholism, the first step is to educate yourself on everything there is to know about alcoholism and alcohol abuse. Learning about the different treatment options is important so you can talk with them while offering all of the support resources possible. 

How to Help Someone With Alcoholism

If you wonder how to help someone with alcoholism, you can do so by learning how to recognize their drinking problem and encouraging them to seek professional treatment. Remember to approach your loved one with knowledge, care and understanding. 

Understanding what alcoholism is and how alcohol use disorder impacts a person’s brain, body and behavior is the first step to helping your loved one suffering from the condition. This highly complex disorder involves more than just drinking too much on occasion. Alcoholism includes a high tolerance of alcohol, dependence and a loss of control. 

If you are ready to learn how to help someone with alcoholism, there are many available recovery programs available to help. My Recovery has researched alcohol rehabs across the country and is available to match your loved one with the best alcohol rehab in your area. If you are ready to learn how to help someone with alcoholism with the guidance of a professional, reach out to My Recovery today to get your loved one on the path to wellness. 

What Is Outpatient Substance Abuse Treatment?

What is outpatient substance abuse treatment?

Making the decision to change your relationship with drugs or alcohol is a huge step toward recovery. There are several types of substance abuse treatment programs available, including detox, counseling and therapy. Although many people think about inpatient rehabilitation programs when thinking about drug rehab and detox, outpatient programs are also a viable option. Outpatient substance abuse treatment programs are one option for you or your loved one battling substance abuse

What Is Outpatient Substance Abuse Treatment?

Outpatient substance abuse treatment programs involve non-residential daily treatment, including counseling, therapy or group sessions at a facility or clinic. Those who choose outpatient substance abuse treatment programs are able to continue life at home while they recover, enabling them to take care of family members or children while keeping up with their jobs and/or staying on track with school. Outpatient rehab requires much less time at a facility, in comparison to inpatient rehab programs that often require a minimum of three months in a rehab center.

Most outpatient substance abuse treatment programs are less intensive yet still help clients to overcome their drug and alcohol dependence while teaching them how to maintain their recovery over the long-term. 

Outpatient substance abuse treatment programs are ideal for those who are committed to stop using alcohol or drugs but require flexibility so they can still remain functional at home and work while adhering to their regular schedules. 

There are several different types of outpatient substance abuse treatment programs, including:

  • Day Programs, which offer the highest level of structure and care in an outpatient setting, often meeting 5 to 7 hours a day while offering biofeedback, ongoing therapy, group counseling and other types of therapy.
  • Intensive Outpatient Programs offer treatment with defined and measurable milestones that are set in place to ensure progress. The commitment per week is decreased as each milestone is met. IOP programs are a great option for those who are serious about abstaining from drugs and alcohol but still need to be able to pursue daily responsibilities, such as work, school or family life. These programs may require a few hours of sessions each week by way of group therapy, counseling sessions, relapse prevention education or recovery support groups.
  • Continuing care groups are another type of IOP programs, such as Narcotics Anonymous or Alcoholics Anonymous. These ongoing support programs are available to help those battling substance abuse to solidify their commitments to sobriety. These groups may be gender- or age-specific and may focus on certain aspects of recovery.

Why Should I Consider an Outpatient Substance Abuse Treatment Program?

Outpatient substance abuse treatment programs offer many benefits that make it the best option for many clients, including:

  • Outpatient substance abuse treatment programs tend to cost less than inpatient rehab as they do not include the costs of lodging at an inpatient facility.
  • Clients can live in their homes while receiving treatment, which is a great option for clients who have friends and family who are a support system.
  • Many different types of therapy and counseling are offered in this setting and clients can choose the level of intensity of care that is best for them and their unique situation.
  • Programs can treat clients with co-occurring problems or disorders, including eating disorders, depression, bipolar disorder or post-traumatic stress disorder.
  • Appointments can be made for meetings that accommodate work or school schedules, including evening meeting times.

Who Should Go to an Outpatient Substance Abuse Treatment Center?

Deciding whether outpatient substance abuse treatment is best for you or a loved one battling substance use is between you/them and a professional; however, by asking yourself or your loved one a few questions before committing to outpatient rehab vs inpatient drug rehab can help:

  • Are you exposed to drugs or alcohol in your environment?
  • Do you live in an environment that is supportive of sobriety and stable?
  • Do you have close friends or family members who use drugs or drink alcohol around you?
  • Can you leave your home, school or job for a period of time to pursue treatment?
  • Can you commute to a facility from your home several times a week?
  • Do you have any other mental health or medical issues that require specialized treatment for a co-occurring disorder?

If you or a loved one is up against a drug or alcohol problem, it is important to pursue help from a treatment professional or someone you can trust. Treatment professionals can offer feedback that helps patients to decide which treatment option is best. 

If you or a loved one is ready to pursue outpatient substance abuse treatment help, the team at My Recovery Source is dedicated to helping you find the best treatment center for you. We understand that obligations at work or home may keep some from pursuing necessary treatment, which is why we are here. Whether you are ready to pursue outpatient substance abuse treatment or want to determine which addiction treatment option is best for you or your loved one, contact us today to get started down the path to wellness and recovery.

Commonly Abused Drugs by Teens

What are the common drugs abused by teens?

It is frightening to come to the realization that your child might be using drugs or abusing substances. Drug abuse in teens is a significant problem today. Drug abuse in adolescents is on the rise. Furthermore, people who begin on the path of drug use in their teenage years are more likely to abuse drugs during adulthood. As a parent or someone who cares for a teen or adolescent who you suspect is on drugs, it is important to recognize the most commonly abused teen drugs and how teenage drug abuse should be addressed.

What Drugs Are Commonly Abused by Teens?

In order to help a teen battling substance use, it is important to know the most commonly abused teen drugs


Alcohol is a legal drug in our society (for people of age, of course) and is very common. It can be enjoyed responsibly and also abused. Unfortunately, it can be one of the most harmful teen drugs around considering the extreme ways it can be consumed by teens. Most teens are given the opportunity to try alcohol. It is readily available and despite its legality, it is still considered high on the list of addictive substances,  next to nicotine. It is a central nervous system depressant that inhibits a person’s ability to think, reason and even physically function. 


Marijuana is another commonly abused teen drug due to its easy accessibility. With marijuana becoming legalized in many states, usage has increased among teens – likely due to its decrease in perceived harmfulness. Some (but not all of) the signs of common marijuana drug use include lack of motivation, bloodshot eyes, increased appetite, slowed reaction time and nervous or paranoid behavior. 


Cocaine use is less common among adolescents than marijuana, according to the National Survey on Drug use, but it still remains a commonly abused substance among teens. Cocaine is often combined with alcohol use to allow a person to drink more. It is often present in nightlife and party settings but can also be used at home in quiet since it can be snorted. Signs of cocaine use include dilated pupils; excessive energy; sensitivity to light, touch or sound; irritability; restlessness and/or paranoia.

Prescription Drugs 

Prescription drugs are also common teen drugs, including narcotics such as Vicodin and OxyContin. The three most common drugs abused by teens include:

  • Opioids, such as OxyContin, Vicodin or codeine, which are used to relieve pain
  • Stimulants, such as Ritalin or Adderall, which are used to treat attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD)
  • Depressants, such as Xanax or Valium, which are used to relieve anxiety disorders or to help a person sleep better


Heroin abuse is on the rise in the United States and is prevalent among young women. Its severe withdrawal symptoms make it difficult to beat heroin addiction. Signs of heroin use include sleepiness, pinpoint pupils, needle tracks on the body, skin infections, vomiting, nausea, itching and more. 


Nicotine addiction may seem less harmful than other addictions, which is likely due to the ease of accessibility to tobacco products and their legality. However, the worst side effects of nicotine addiction take time to develop and are highly addictive. Some people think nicotine use is not a big deal because it does not offer a high like other drugs and is so prevalent in today’s society, but it stimulates the release of dopamine in neurons just like other drugs.  Nicotine is also considered a gateway substance, as are several other drugs, including marijuana. This means the use of this drug tends to precede the initiation of the use of other drugs. 

How to Get My Teen Help With Drug Addiction

If you think your teen is on drugs, the first thing to remember is that you don’t have to do this alone. Nobody expects you to take on the battle of teen drug addiction yourself. It can be overwhelming for parents or loved ones of a person struggling with teen drugs to take on the challenge of helping the teen alone. Look for help in the form of immediate family, your child’s friends, school counselors and teachers, doctors and intervention specialists. It is also important to learn how to talk to your teen about addiction.

It is also important to reach out to a professional right away if you notice signs of teen drug use in your child. The longer substance abuse is allowed to fester, the more difficult it can be for your teen to break the cycle of addiction. Finding an addiction recovery center can be overwhelming. There are many options available with varying degrees of treatment and financial options. My Recovery Source is proud to act as the middleman, helping you to find the teen addiction treatment facility right for you and your family. Reach out today for your free personalized recommendations.

How to Tell if Someone Is on Drugs

How can I tell if someone is on drugs?

Coming to the realization that someone you love is on drugs can be a hard pill to swallow but knowing the signs that point to drug use can be helpful for your friend or family member so they can get the help they need. Addiction is a serious problem, with 11.7% of Americans 12 and over reporting use of illegal drugs.  Learning how to tell if someone is on drugs can help you to identify whether they are using drugs and to guide them toward necessary treatment. 

Signs and Symptoms of Someone on Drugs

There are many signs and behaviors to watch for if you are concerned that someone you care about is on drugs – but it is also important to note that just because a person has one or two signs of drug use or addiction does not mean your loved one is necessarily abusing drugs. Some other conditions can present with the same symptoms. Read on to find out how to tell if someone is on drugs.

Behavioral Signs of Drug Use

Behavioral changes are common in those abusing drugs, regardless of the type of drug. Substance abuse has a tendency to cause significant alterations in the way a person normally behaves. If your loved one is exhibiting any new or unusual behavior that cannot be otherwise explained, it should warrant concern. Here are some of the more common behavioral signs that someone is using drugs:

  • Relationship problems with family, friends and/or work colleagues.
  • Neglect of responsibilities, often because the person is more focused on drugs than responsibilities at home, work or school.
  • Decreased performance at work or school – even in a person who typically excels.
  • Financial and legal problems, including falling into debt, overspending, borrowing too much money and getting in legal trouble.
  • Social withdrawal.
  • Risky behaviors that a person wouldn’t normally exhibit, such as stealing, driving while drinking or engaging in risky sexual behavior.
  • Unusual mood changes, ranging from unusual levels of depression or anxiety or a person may be more euphoric or energetic than normal for no explainable reason.

Physical Signs of Drug Use

Some people become good at hiding some of their behavioral changes when using drugs, masking changes that are taking place, such as hiding their decreased performance or pretending to be engaged with people around them. However, physical warning signs of drug use are not as easy to hide. Some of the most common physical signs of drug use include:

  • Sleeping problems, such as difficulty falling asleep, falling asleep at strange times or being awake during odd hours.
  • Changes in eating habits, such as an increased or decreased appetite. 
  • Changes in speech, such as slurred speech or talking in a way that is difficult to understand.
  • Eye changes, including red or watery eyes or pupils that are too small or too large.
  • Poor coordination, such as stumbling while walking.
  • Poor physical hygiene.
  • Persistent runny nose.
  • Tremors.
  • Facial changes, including flushing, paleness or puffiness.

Signs of Drug Use for Specific Drugs

In addition to the above signs that someone is on drugs, there are also specific symptoms that are typically present when a person is using a specific type of drug or substance. This is important to understand because, although all drug abuse is harmful, some can be more damaging and require more pressing treatment and intervention. Signs of drug abuse of some of the more common substances include:

  • Marijuana: Red, glassy eyes, lack of motivation, periods of excessive laughter followed by tiredness are all signs of marijuana use.
  • Depressants (such as tranquilizers and barbiturates): Symptoms are similar to alcohol use, such as coordination problems, lack of judgement, slurred speech or general tiredness.
  • Stimulants (such as meth, cocaine and crack): Periods of extreme euphoria/hyperactivity/talkativeness followed by excessive depression and/or sleepiness.
  • Heroin: Needle marks, vomiting, sweating and twitching as well as a possible loss of appetite and strange sleeping patterns.
  • Hallucinogens (such as LSD): Behavioral symptoms such as paranoia, confusion and/or aggression as well as physical symptoms like dilated pupils.
  • Alcohol: Self-destructive behavior, agitation, compulsive behavior or aggression are some of the behavioral symptoms of alcohol abuse, while blackout, shakiness, dizziness or sweating in addition to slurred speech and stumbling around while walking are physical signs and symptoms of an alcohol addiction.

How to Get Help With a Drug or Alcohol Addiction

If you or a loved one battle drug or alcohol addiction, getting the help you need might be difficult on your own. Know that addiction is not the result of a choice you or your loved one has made and you should not feel ashamed or afraid of pursuing addiction treatment. 

Drug abuse is damaging to people, including their physical and mental health as well as their relationships with loved ones. If you suspect someone you care about might be using drugs, knowing how to tell if someone is on drugs is important so you can help them get the treatment necessary.

Finding the right rehab for your loved one may seem challenging, which is why My Recovery Source is here to help. Our program helps you to evaluate your specific needs, including whether you have any underlying mental health or medical conditions that need to be assessed. Once adequate information is obtained for you or your loved one’s unique struggle, the team at My Recovery Source can then help find the right treatment and treatment facility for you.