Steroids Addiction, Symptoms and Treatment Information

Many aspiring athletes and exercise enthusiasts have a desire to look as fit as possible, build muscle, and perform at their best. They turn to steroids to accomplish these goals, and often the abuse ends up causing an addiction. Anabolic steroids are drugs that can encourage the growth of muscles in the body, causing improved strength and stamina. When athletes and fitness enthusiasts begin using steroids for the benefits described above, it causes their health to deteriorate. The user often finds it difficult, if not impossible to stop using, and a Steroids Addiction is the result.

What are Steroids?

Anabolic steroids are performance-enhancing drugs that simulate testosterone in the body. They help a person to look “ripped” or “built”. The steroids increase muscle healing, which also promotes growth, and increases physical performance. People who abuse steroids often take up to 100 times the recommended dosage.

Symptoms of an Addiction

Signs of an addiction usually include rapid muscle gain in a short time span. If you suspect someone you know of having a Steroids Addiction, you may notice that they are spending an excessive amount of time at the gym, spending money on pills or supplements, and are in possession of needles and syringes. You may also notice that this person is ignoring responsibilities, such as work, school, or family to concentrate on working out. Thier hair and skin can become excessively greasy as a result of the abuse. You may notice that your friend or family member has sudden skin breakouts, bad breath, and mood swings. Withdrawal and depression are other telltale signs of a Steroids Addiction.

Treatment for a Steroids Addiction

Once an addiction is recognized, it is important for the user to get treatment. It may be difficult getting someone to admit that they have an addiction. An intervention or counseling may be necessary. The first thing the patient will need to do is to stop using steroids and detoxify their body. This process needs to be closely monitored, as suicidal thoughts or tendencies can occur. An inpatient treatment may be necessary at this time, since side effects can be severe, and include headaches and muscle aches.

The patient can expect to attend regular therapy sessions. A counselor will work with them on their self-image and factors that contributed to steroid abuse. The patient may attend therapy sessions alone or bring along family and close friends who have been affected by the addiction.

It is important to note that along with an addiction to steroids often comes an addiction to other drugs. The steroid use may have caused symptoms such as insomnia, and the patient may have abused sleeping pills as well. Those with a steroid addiction are often also addicted to pain medications, due to the frequent body aches caused by the steroid use. All of these addictions need to be discussed and treated.

The patient will undergo an evaluation and education as part of their treatment. Once these steps are completed, the patient can choose the type of rehabilitation that best fits their needs. The most common types include inpatient treatment, outpatient treatment, and intensive outpatient treatment.

Inpatient Treatment

This type of treatment for an addiction is often the most intense. The patient stays at the treatment center for 30-90 days, and maybe even longer. There are daily counseling sessions and behavioral therapy. The patient works closely with their doctor on a daily basis to monitor their progress. Group counseling is common with inpatient therapy, as well as practices such as yoga and meditation.

 Outpatient Treatment

The patient will receive treatment at a rehabilitation center on an outpatient basis while continuing to live in their own home. They may attend treatment sessions one day per week or several. The patient may or may not continue to work or attend school. A counselor can help the patient decide in outpatient treatment fits their needs. Someone may complete inpatient treatment, and continue with outpatient treatment for an extended period of time.

Intensive Outpatient Treatment

This type of treatment is similar to inpatient treatment in the level of intensity. Treatment sessions occur every day, yet the patient continues to live in their own home. Usually, the patient is not able to continue to work or attend school during this time, as the treatment is their main focus.

What To Expect During Treatment

Patients can expect to receive monitored care during their treatment no matter which type they choose. The counselors are dedicated to helping everyone resume a healthy lifestyle. People receiving treatment need to achieve clarity regarding their addiction. They will work hard to identify the behaviors that led to the abuse and develop a plan for removing these behaviors from their lives.

After the Treatment

One of the biggest difficulties that patients face is returning to their normal lives after the treatment has ended. A patient has to have a plan in place so they do not relapse into their addictions. Recovery is an ongoing process, and patients must work hard for many years to a lifetime to stay healthy and focused. Programs, such as 12-step programs are available. Many people need to restructure their entire lives. Some need to meet new groups of friends and develop strong support systems. Regular therapy appointments will help the patient to set goals for themselves and their new, healthy lifestyle. Many people attend support groups for additional help. This helps them realize that they are not alone and that they can overcome their addiction and stay on the road to a healthy, steroid-free life.

It is important for the patient to include as many loved ones as possible in their treatment journey. These are the people that will support them along the way. This is especially important if people close to the patient had become enablers during the addiction. They may need some counseling as well so that they can learn ways to support the patient in a healthy way.

Addictions affect millions of people. Not only the patient but the people who love and care for them. With an appropriate course of treatment, it is possible to overcome an addiction and be on the road to a lifetime of good health.

Further Reading:

Side Effects of Steroids
Long Term Effects of Steroids