Addictions - Including Substances Critical Incident Stress Management

Addictions - Including Substances

While some people can use prescription or recreational drugs with no negative effects, many others become addicted and face dramatic health and lifestyle problems as a result. Substance addictions negatively affect relationships, home, school or work, leaving the person feeling ashamed, helpless and isolated.

Physical symptoms of substance abuse and addiction are varied depending on the drug of choice, but the symptoms of the addiction itself are similar. People who are addicted to substances may neglect their responsibilities, take potentially dangerous risks and get into trouble with the law. As their drug use spirals out of control, they will lose interest in activities that used to be enjoyable and continue to take drugs despite knowing the harm it causes.

Substance addicts tend to build up a tolerance to their drug of choice, and get angry when they can't get more of it. Withdrawal symptoms are highly probable when an addict goes without it for too long. Depression, nausea, insomnia, sweating, restlessness, anxiety and shaking are all common withdrawal symptoms.

Psychotherapy can help you to overcome substance addiction by focusing on correcting maladaptive behaviors. Substance abuse is usually a coping mechanism against emotionally overwhelming past events or memories. Substances are often used to provide instant gratification instead of facing certain issues.

Therapists are equipped to help clients deal with addiction recovery through empowerment and helping them set simple short term targets. The first target is sobriety, followed by empowering the client with adaptive skills and finding new coping strategies that deal with the issues that caused the addiction. Substance addiction can be ended, allowing the person to live a healthy, productive life.

If you need a counsellor or psychologist to help you address the effects of substance addiction, you can search the directory below to find a professional with the approach best suited to your situation.

Note: You may narrow your search by selecting more than one filter below.

Sheran Selluski

M.A., RCC
Sheran Selluski has her Masters in Counselling Psychology and is a Registered Clinical Counsellor with the BC Association of Clinical Counsellors. She has offices in Maple Ridge and Mission. Sheran has trained in... Read more

Sandy Miller

M.Couns., RCC
Sandy has a Masters in Counselling Psychology, is a Registered Clinical Counsellor, and an International Certified Alcohol and Drug Counsellor. She provides counselling services to individuals, couples and families in... Read more

Jim Browning

Ph.D., R.Psych
Dr. Browning has been a registered psychologist in the Vancouver area since 1980. He has worked extensively in the areas of mental health, family violence, addictions, men's issues and employee assistance. Dr. Browning... Read more

David Brown

M.S.W., RCSW
Most of us want to make changes and improvements in our life, yet we tend to rely on the same old approaches (or habits) despite our best intentions. My approach to counselling is to support people to experiment with... Read more

Joyce Barwis

, RCC
  Joyce Barwis is a Masters Level Registered Clinical Counsellor providing the support you need to make significant, fundamental, and lasting change in your life. With over 35 years of practice behind her, Joyce... Read more

Noni Retfalvi

M.Ed., RCC
I am a Registered Clinical Counsellor with over ten years of experience providing therapy to individuals in the Greater Vancouver area. Change is difficult, and sometimes painful.  The moment we ... Read more

Melanie Huck

M.A., RCC
Melanie is a Registered Clinical Counsellor (#2136) and a member of the Adlerian Association of BC.  She has been a member of the BC Association of Clinical Counsellors since 2003.   She works with... Read more