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         Frequently Asked Questions – Drug Addiction

Dr Sumeet Inder Singh is the best de-addiction specialist in Chandigarh, Mohali and adjoining areas.

  • Whom should I consult for drug addiction ? and why?
    Drug addiction in fact, requires both medical and psychological treatment and support. Treatment programs, besides medical treatment for detoxification from drugs and subsequent abstinence (staying drug free), also include counselling, both for the affected person and his family, teaching behaviour modification techniques and new coping skills. Psychiatrists are also able to diagnose and treat other psychiatric illnesses which often coexist with drug addiction. Drug abuse is also known to bring about symptoms of another mental illness, for e.g., there is increased risk of psychosis (loss of reality contact) in marijuana users or severe depression after cocaine use. Conversely, mental disorders can lead to drug abuse, possibly as a means of “self-medication.” Patients suffering from anxiety or depression may rely on alcohol, tobacco, and other drugs to temporarily alleviate their symptoms.
  • How can drug addiction be diagnosed?
    A definitive diagnosis of drug addiction usually occurs after an evaluation by a psychiatrist, who as part of their training deal with drug addiction. Blood tests are not used to diagnose drug addiction but may be used to see whether you are taking certain drugs or you’ve taken certain drugs in the recent past.
  • What are the warning signs that a friend or a loved one is using drugs?
    Psychiatrists diagnose someone as having an anxiety disorder if symptoms occur for six months on more, and significantly interfere with the person's ability to function at home, work or school. Doctors perform physical evaluations to rule out other causes for the symptoms of anxiety. Cardiovascular disease, thyroid problems, menopause, substance abuse and/or drug side effects, such as from steroids, may cause symptoms similar to those of an anxiety disorder
  • How can we prevent drug abuse in children/adolescents?
    Take the following steps to help prevent drug abuse in your children / adolescents: « Communicate. Talk to your children about the risks of drug use. Don’t shy away from the topic or feel that it is too early in child’s life to discuss such things « LIsten. Be a good listener when your children talk about peer pressure to use drugs, and be supportive of their efforts to resist it. « Set a good example. Don’t abuse alcohol or addictive drugs. Children of parents who abuse drugs are at greater risk of drug addiction. « Strengthen the bond. Work on your relationship with your children. A strong, stable bond between you and your child will reduce your child’s risk of using drugs. Spending quality time with your child will help you to discuss and guide him regarding any query he may have, about drug use.
  • What steps will help avoid relapse to drugs?
    Once you’ve been addicted to a drug, you’re at high risk of falling back into a pattern of addiction. 1. Avoid high-risk situations and build sober social network.Don’t go back to the neighborhood where you used to get your drugs and stay away from your old drug friends. If your previous social life revolved around drugs, you may need to make new social network. 2. Get help Immediately If you use /feel like using the drug again. If you start using the drug again, talk to your psychiatrist or your counselor. Drug addiction relapse is linked to a number of problems that may be helped with counselling. Because people with other mental health problems, such as depression, are more likely to relapse, the underlying mental health concerns need to be addressed, or you may have marriage or family problems you need to work through. 3. Stick with your treatment plan. It may seem like you’ve recovered and you don’t need to keep taking steps to stay drug-free. But don’t stop seeing your doctor, or taking prescribed medication. 4. Drug abuse relapse often stems from misguided attempts to manage stress or to cover up painful memories and emotions by again using drugs. However, there are healthier ways to keep your stress level in check including doing exercising regularly, meditating /doing yoga, practising simple deep breathing exercises, and challenging self-defeating thoughts. 5. Build a meaningful drug free life by picking a new hobby which is creative and always interested you or having realistic goals to work towards and something to look forward to, can be powerful antidotes to drug addiction.