Menu icon - click here to toggle the menu

Drug Abuse Symptoms That All Social Workers Should Look For

Recovery Centers of America

Authored by Recovery Centers of America

Learn how to recognize the symptoms of drug abuse in your clients and promote substance abuse rehab.

There’s no denying that social workers serve a vital role in our society. For instance, social workers are often the first line of defense for the disadvantaged. Thus, they come to be advocates for people of all backgrounds who are facing a wide variety of crises.  Unfortunately, some of those whom you are trying to help may be hiding their problems from you.

Have you ever suspected that one of your clients could be abusing drugs? Knowing drug abuse symptoms and what they correspond to may help you promote substance abuse rehab save a life one day!

As a social worker, you know that addiction is a disease.  Furthermore, denial is an integral part of the disease and may be a major obstacle to recovery.  So, social workers have gained insight and understanding about alcoholism and different treatment approaches that are matched to a client’s readiness to change and can support their entry into recovery.  In addition, paying close attention to these drug abuse symptoms in your clients is crucial to helping them get the care they need.

Common drug abuse symptoms:

  • Inability to keep a job: Repeatedly being let go from positions is an indication that something isn’t right. Commonly, drug abuse will prevent someone from performing tasks well or even showing up on time.
  • Lying and deception: Some social workers may believe that they need to earn someone’s trust. But, a client’s inability to be honest, or repeated forms of deception, like lying about where one has been or who one has been seeing, are key symptoms of drug abuse.
  • Repeated illness or sleeping at unusual hours: If your client claims to be sick frequently or is often sleeping at odd hours of the day or for long periods of time, these may be drug abuse symptoms. Your client may be ill from opioid withdrawal symptoms, or hungover from excessive drinking.

Co-occurring illnesses

Additionally, it’s also important to keep in mind that your client may be suffering from an undiagnosed mental illness. This is on top of a substance abuse problem. So, they could need substance abuse rehab. Co-occurring illnesses may make it even more difficult to recognize drug abuse symptoms and may also make treatment more complex.

Lighthouse Can Help

If our list of drug abuse symptoms has led you to suspect that your client is dealing with a drug or alcohol addiction, Lighthouse can help.  Lighthouse offers a full continuum of substance abuse rehab care to help your clients begin their journey through recovery. Contact us today for more information and resources atl 1-800-RECOVERY for immediate assistance.

Authored by

Recovery Centers of America

Recovery Centers of America



Treatment Advisor
Standing By, 24/7