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4 levels of Substance Use:

Casual Substance Use: Contact with substance is purely social and very infrequent with no particular pattern.


Substance Misuse: Occasional episodes of behavior due to substance use that are clearly not what you wanted to say or do. A weekly pattern may become evident (like only on weekends)


Substance Abuse: Radical behavior episodes are frequent and person is actively seeking their substance of choice on an everyday pattern. Relationships become strained because of use and work and financial stability become affected. D.U.I. and other involvement with authorities may occur. Multiple D.U.I charges are definite signs of abuse.


Substance Dependence: This is the point when it is no longer a choice to use. Without use withdrawal symptoms start to occur and chemically your body needs the substance to function in the morning and throughout the day. Traumatic events are occurring on a regular basis and relationships have been strained to the breaking point. Hospitalizations for over-use have occurred and the person is most likely starting to isolate themselves in order to hide their dependencies. At this point Detoxification and Inpatient stabilization are needed before counseling towards recovery can even begin.

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