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What is Polysubstance Abuse?

A young woman wondering, "What is polysubstance abuse?"

Drug addiction is a complex disorder that can completely derail one’s life. While addiction to one drug can be challenging, some people develop addictions to multiple substances—a situation known as polysubstance abuse. Polysubstance abuse can cause profound physical, psychological, and social harm, and often requires specialized treatment.

Do you need polysubstance addiction treatment? Call us today at 619.458.3435.

What is Polysubstance Abuse?

Polysubstance abuse involves simultaneously using more than one addictive substance. These substances can include illegal drugs, prescription drugs other than their intended purpose, or over-the-counter drugs. The combinations of drugs people use can vary, but commonly used combinations include heroin and cocaine, alcohol and marijuana, and prescription painkillers with alcohol.

Polysubstance abuse poses many dangers and challenges for people struggling with addiction. It could lead to a heightened risk of overdosing, life-threatening medical complications, or adverse intellectual and behavioral health outcomes.

Why Do People Become Addicted To Several Drugs at the Same Time?

People who struggle with polysubstance abuse may have started out as having an addiction to one drug and then progressively added others. However, others may begin using multiple drugs at the same time as a form of self-medication or an attempt to manage physical or emotional pain.

In some cases, people struggling with polysubstance abuse may have co-occurring mental health conditions such as depression, anxiety, trauma, or other illnesses. As a result, this can lead to substance abuse as a coping mechanism.

Signs of Polysubstance Abuse

Substance abuse disorders are some of the most challenging conditions to identify. The signs and symptoms of polysubstance abuse can vary widely from one person to another, but the following are common:

  • Mood swings and irritability
  • Poor judgment
  • Aggressive or violent behavior
  • Difficulty sleeping
  • Sweating or shaking
  • Withdrawal from family and friends
  • Financial problems
  • Neglecting personal hygiene
  • Decline in academic or work performance
  • Heightened risk of engaging in dangerous activities

These and other symptoms indicate that a person is struggling with polysubstance abuse and requires specialized treatment.

Do You Need an Addiction Treatment For a Polysubstance Use Disorder?

If you or someone you know is struggling with polysubstance abuse, it’s crucial to seek professional help as soon as possible. Because of the complexities associated with addiction to multiple substances, specialized treatment may be required.

Treatment for polysubstance use disorder typically involves a comprehensive approach that may include detoxification, medication-assisted treatment, behavioral therapies, and support groups. Therapies used in an addiction treatment program include cognitive-behavioral therapy, mindfulness-based therapy, motivational interviewing, psycho-education, and others.

Benefits of Addiction Treatment For a Substance Use Disorder

Professional addiction treatment programs provide numerous benefits for individuals struggling with polysubstance use disorder. These benefits include:

Individualized Care

Treatment programs tailor each person’s addiction treatment to their unique needs, ensuring they receive personalized care.

Behavioral Therapies

Behavioral therapy can help people overcome addiction triggers and learn new behavior patterns.

Medication-Assisted Treatment

Medications combined with behavioral therapies can help people reduce cravings and control withdrawal symptoms.

Access to Support Groups

Access to support groups such as 12-step groups can provide a sense of community, accountability, and practical assistance.

Development of Coping Skills

Treatment programs can help people develop new coping skills so that they can handle stress and other triggers without needing to turn to drugs or alcohol.

Improved Physical Health

Treatment programs often take a holistic approach that includes addressing physical health problems associated with substance abuse, such as poor nutrition.

Get Help Today From Apex Recovery Tennessee

Polysubstance abuse can take a devastating toll on an individual’s well-being, but recovery is always possible, and professional help is available. At Apex Recovery Tennessee, we offer a multi-disciplinary treatment approach that helps our clients break free from addiction and build a fulfilling life in recovery. We provide detox, residential, and outpatient services with evidence-based and holistic therapies.

Polysubstance abuse can cause significant harm to an individual’s health, safety, and overall quality of life. Seeking professional help is essential if you or someone you know is struggling with substance abuse. Receiving effective addiction treatment can help individuals overcome addiction and improve their physical and mental health, financial stability, and relationships.

Remember, there’s no shame in seeking help for addiction. At Apex Recovery, we offer the highest level of care for individuals seeking to overcome a polysubstance use disorder. Get the help you need by calling 619.458.3435 or reaching out online today.

Call Our Toll-Free Hotline 24/7 at 877.881.2689