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A commonly held belief is that substance use is voluntary and wilful. It is hard on the part of the persons and their families to accept addiction as a disease and that outside medical help is needed to help substance abusers.



“Addiction is a disease.

It starts with a person but infects the whole family.”


A commonly held belief is that substance use is voluntary and wilful. It is hard on the part of the persons and their families to accept addiction as a disease, and that outside medical help is needed to help substance abusers.

How to identify addiction?

  • Uncontrolled use of a substance leads to problems in family and workplace
  • Progressively, a large amount of substance is needed to achieve the same effect or high
  • Persistent unsuccessful desire to cut down substance use
  • Spending a great deal of time to obtain, use and recover from substance use
  • Important social, occupational or recreational activities are given up or reduced because of substance use
  • Withdrawal symptoms when the use of a substance is stopped

Addiction or substance use disorders are complicated psychiatric conditions contributed by biological and environmental factors. Prolonged use of a substance brings about structural and chemical changes in the brain that transform the voluntary drug-using behaviour to compulsive drug use.

Substance abuse also affects the reward centre of the brain, which along with above-mentioned changes in the brain makes it difficult for the patient to abandon drug use. Behavioural, physical and psychological dependence are the hallmark of substance use disorder.

New insights about this common problem:

Addiction and substance use disorders are prevalent worldwide. Commonly abused substances are alcohol, tobacco, cannabis, opioids including abuse of prescription medications such as pain medication, cough syrup, etc.

  • 1 in 7 people has alcohol, cannabis, nicotine related problems
  • More than two-thirds of people with addiction abuse alcohol
  • The top three drugs causing addiction are marijuana, opioid (narcotic) pain relievers, and cocaine

The following factors may increase the chances of having addiction:

  • Failures, stressful life, financial losses, painful relationships
  • Mental health disorders, people with psychiatric conditions like depression, anxiety disorder are at increased risk
  • Family history of addiction
  • An abusive, neglectful or traumatizing childhood
  • Drug or alcohol use early in life
  • The company, friendship, culture have also a great role

Withdrawal symptoms are distressing symptoms specific to the drug of abuse, which appears when the substance use is abruptly stopped or reduced in amount after consuming a huge amount for a prolonged period.

What are the complications of consuming Alcohol? 

Alcohol is one of the most abuseddrugs worldwide. More than two-thirds of addicted people consume it.

Symptoms of intoxication:

  • Slurred speech
  • Dizziness
  • Incoordination
  • Unsteady gait
  • Impairment in attention or memory
  • Double vision
  • Coma

Symptoms of alcohol withdrawal:

  • Tremulousness
  • Irritability
  • Anxiety
  • Nausea and vomiting
  • Sweating
  • Increased heart rate
  • Increased blood pressure
  • Confusion
  • Seizures
  • Perceptual distortions

What are the complications of consuming Opioids?

Symptoms of intoxication:

  • Altered mood
  • Drowsiness
  • Slurred speech
  • Impaired memory and attention

Symptoms of withdrawal:

  • Nausea and vomiting
  • Diarrhoea
  • Yawning
  • Muscle ache
  • Lacrimation
  • Goosebumps
  • Fever
  • Insomnia

What are the complications of consuming Cannabis?

Symptoms of intoxication:

  • Red Eye
  • Increased heart rate
  • Increased appetite
  • Dry mouth
  • Decreased blood pressure on standing
  • Euphoric state
  • Impaired motor skills
  • Increased sensitivity to external stimuli
  • Objects appear more colourful

Symptoms of withdrawal:

  • Irritability
  • Anxiety
  • Insomnia
  • Vivid dreams
  • Decreased appetite
  • Weight loss
  • Depressed mood
  • Restlessness
  • Headache
  • Chills
  • Stomach pain
  • Sweating
  • Tremors

It reduces the complications:

  • Physical, such as heart disease, HIV/AIDS, and neurological damage
  • Psychological and emotional illnesses like anxiety, stress, and depression
  • Personal and social damaged relationships
  • Economic, such as bankruptcy and debt

Don’t struggle, Udgam can help you!

The good news is that there is hope through medical treatment!

Addiction can be managed with the help of appropriate medical treatment, which can be tailored according to individual patients after careful assessment to improve the chances of success.


UDGAM, along with its trained and experienced mental healthcare providers including psychiatrists, psychologists, de-addiction counsellors, motivational gurus and social workers, focuses on the basic approach treatment of addiction, including:


 Detoxification: management of symptoms appearing due to stoppage of drug of abuse with the help of medicinal drugs

– Maintenance and rehabilitation: for long-term behaviour changes

  • Helping patients to stay sober by use of medical drugs under the supervision of experts
  • Psychotherapy/Counselling (Cognitive behaviour therapy, family therapy, Motivational Enhancement Therapy)
  • Self-help groups like Alcoholic Anonymous, Narcotic Anonymousand more