Sadly, as substances are abused, addictions develop and obstruct the lives of thousands of people every day.

When an individual becomes addicted to substances, it is in their best interest to secure professional treatment via a private inpatient rehab or an outpatient rehab.  However, for many reasons, the number of sufferers that do so remains minimal.

If you have reason to believe that someone close to you has become addicted to drugs or alcohol, it is entirely normal for you to want to help them as best as you can. 

Yet, as addiction takes control of their life, you may find that your help is rejected.  Your relationship with the individual in question may even become hampered, leaving you deflated and unsure of what to do.


Noticing The Signs Of Addiction

Before understanding how to help someone with an addiction, it is important to review the signs of addiction.  In doing so, you will be able to determine whether an addiction is indeed impairing a loved one’s life.

Due to their very nature, addictions cause a range of physical and behavioural signs to arise.  However, the following signs will often be displayed:

  • Changes in their behaviour, such as becoming more aggressive or agitated
  • Reduced interest in hobbies and things that once interested them
  • Lying about their whereabouts
  • Participating in anti-social behaviour
  • Isolating themselves from loved ones
  • Spending an increased amount of money
  • Asking to borrow large sums of money on a frequent basis
  • Experiencing debt
  • Weight loss
  • Changes in their appearance and complexion
  • Taking less pride in their appearance
  • Poor hygiene
  • Appearing to be extremely tired
  • Reduced concentration and an inability to retain information

 In addition to the above, those affected by a drug or alcohol addiction will experience several psychological symptoms. Though these symptoms are not visible to the naked eye, the behavioural signs noted above will surface on a recurring basis as they become more intense.


Finding Ways To Help Someone With Addiction 

Having come to understand the signs of addiction, you may now find yourself certain that someone you know is struggling with a drug or alcohol addiction.  Although your first instinct may be to confront the person or remove drugs or alcohol from their possession, doing so is not advised. 

Instead, we recommended taking the following ways to help someone with addiction into consideration. 


1.     Understand Addiction Treatment 

From researching the types of rehabs available throughout the United Kingdom to understanding addiction treatment in greater detail, educating yourself is extremely beneficial when it comes to helping someone with an addiction.

Though you may think there are other ways to help someone with an addiction, it should be noted that many individuals delay attending rehab due to not understanding the rehabs and treatments that can assist them in overcoming their addiction. 

Considering this, the more knowledge you have surrounding rehabs, addiction treatment and the benefits of securing professional treatment, the better you will be able to help a friend, family member, or employee.


2.     Approach The Individual With Compassion and Empathy

While confronting a loved one or friend about their addiction may seem like an appropriate way to address an addiction, we would advise you to reconsider doing so. 

Not only could appearing confrontational harm your relationship with the individual in question, but it could cause them to display self-destructive behaviours and consume larger quantities of substances.

Instead, when attempting to help someone with an addiction, you must approach them with compassion and empathy.  This will enable you to begin to break down any barriers that may have been erected and offer reassurance and support.


3. Listen To What They Have To Say

Though addictions arise from various factors, a large proportion of individuals will become addicted to substances as they attempt to navigate mental health problems alone.

By providing a listening ear and a safe space for your loved one or friend to share their concerns, they will gradually feel the weight of their coexisting disorder alleviate from their shoulders.


4. Refer a Loved One For Addiction Treatment

Regardless of how supportive you are, you may find that your help is declined.  Though disheartening, this does not mean that your efforts to help someone with an addiction should stop.  

Rather than attempt to approach the individual again, referring them for addiction treatment is a suitable solution.  

Referring someone for addiction treatment will require you to contact a rehab, such as our own, and discuss the signs and symptoms you have observed with a professional.  From here, the individual in question will be contacted directly.


5. Stage An Intervention 

Although referrals continue to be highly effective, interventions are often required.  Essentially meetings hosted by family members and friends, addiction interventions are overseen by psychologists and recovery support workers to ensure that addiction treatment is commenced. 

Though staging an intervention may seem like a last resort, we would encourage you to do so if you have attempted to help someone with an addiction. 


6. Reach Out For Support

While addictions undoubtedly have the most significant impact on the person suffering, addictions also have devastating consequences on those affected by someone else’s addiction.

To ensure that you can help someone with an addiction, you must reach out for any support that you may personally need.  

Doing so will provide you with the opportunity to discuss your worries, seek counselling and learn how to cope with the ramifications of addiction. 


Contact Us Today

As you review how to help someone with an addiction, you may have numerous unanswered questions.  

To find out more about how to help someone with an addiction or discuss the impact that someone’s addiction has had on your life, we welcome you to contact us today by calling 01253 847 553.

As you do so, our team will listen to your worries and provide you with appropriate help.

John Gillen - Author - Last updated: December 14, 2021

John is one UK’s leading professionals in the addiction recovery industry. Pioneering new treatment techniques such as NAD+ and ongoing research into new therapy techniques such as systematic laser therapy, John is committed to providing the very best treatment for people throughout the UK and Europe. During his extremely busy schedule, John likes to regularly update our blog section with the latest news and trends in the industry to keep visitors to our site as well informed as possible on everything related to addiction treatment.