Signs of Addiction in Veterans & How to Get Help

signs addiction veterans

It’s an ironic twist that one of the key symptoms of addiction is denial. If your addicted mind is convincing you that you don’t have a problem, how can you see it? Veterans in particular can struggle with identifying signs of addiction due to the stigma against substance abuse in the ranks. The reality is, if drugs and alcohol have taken over your life, the signs are everywhere. You just have to look for it. This comprehensive checklist gives you a starting point. How many apply to your life right now? Have you experienced:

  • Getting arrested
  • Parking tickets
  • Overdue bills
  • Problems with your landlord
  • Arguments with your girlfriend, boyfriend, partner, or spouse
  • Tension with family members
  • Road rage
  • Irritability

  • Trouble sleeping
  • Sleeping too much
  • Loss of appetite
  • Overeating
  • Weight loss
  • Weight gain
  • Skin texture changes
  • Sores
  • Hair loss
  • Dull eyes
  • Rapid heart rate
  • Lack of energy
  • Nausea
  • Headaches
  • Shakes
  • Nightmares

  • Sexual promiscuity
  • Overspending
  • Overeating 
  • Hygiene issues
  • Difficulty cleaning your home
  • Unpaid taxes
  • Fighting with your neighbors
  • Lost friendships
  • Empty bottles all over your house
  • Drug paraphernalia in your house
  • Anxiety

  • Depression
  • Nightmares
  • Paranoia
  • Changes in your friend group
  • Bad grades at school
  • Issues with your commanding officer

  • Not brushing your teeth and flossing
  • Borrowing money from friends and family
  • Selling off your possessions
  • Stealing
  • Risky behavior
  • Bloodshot eyes
  • Frequent bruising or injuries
  • Getting sick frequently

  • Dizziness
  • Having people tell you you need to cut back
  • Confusion 
  • Strokes
  • Blackouts
  • Shrunken pupils
  • Flu-like symptoms
  • Lying
  • Rigidity
  • Isolating
  • Absences from work or school
  • Anything else? 

Do I Need Rehab for Veterans? 

In the depths of addiction, it’s easy to blame addiction symptoms like the ones above on anything but your drinking or drug use. You might blame the military, your spouse, your boss, your landlord — even God — for your troubles. The reality is, you didn’t cause your addiction but you are responsible for it. The decision of whether you want to live free from addiction is yours alone. If you are willing to consider that your life could be better without drugs and alcohol, then addiction treatment for veterans could probably be beneficial. People who don’t have a problem with substance abuse usually don’t torture themselves wondering if they need rehab. In most cases, if you’re asking yourself the question, then it’s only a matter of time before you enter addiction treatment for veterans. And if you do, you’re not alone. One study found that nearly one in three veterans returning home from Iraq met the criteria for alcohol use disorder.

What Happens in Addiction Treatment for Veterans

Addiction treatment for veterans is designed to help you stop drinking and using. At the same time, however, Owl’s Nest takes a dual-diagnosis approach to healing the underlying issues and symptoms that may be linked to your addiction. For example, many vets self-medicate to numb the effects of PTSD, depression, and anxiety. Getting clean without addressing your mental health challenges makes it hard to stay sober for the long term.

We utilize a variety of addiction treatment modalities to help you find freedom. For example, daily yoga sessions can help you find balance again. Medication-assisted treatment may be helpful in managing withdrawal symptoms in early recovery. Each client receives a custom plan with their own unique mix of therapies that will give them the wings to fly.

Even if you’re not sure whether you have a problem, contact our team for a confidential chat. They’ve been through addiction and recovery themselves, and can give you honest feedback about your situation and how to move forward. Because you deserve to experience the freedom you fought for.


The Owls Nest


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