If someone is experiencing symptoms of dependence, proper help and support will be necessary.
Difference Between Dependence and Tolerance
The main difference between tolerance and dependence is that tolerance refers to the body getting used to taking a substance and requiring higher doses. Dependence, however, refers to the physical or psychological symptoms that occur that make someone feel like they must continue taking a substance. Oftentimes, dependence and tolerance can go together. When someone develops a tolerance, they will likely develop a dependence with continued use.
What Can Dependence Lead To?
The main risk of drug dependence is that it could lead to the development of an addiction. Other risks of dependence include:
- Changes in the brain’s chemical structure
- Developing a tolerance
- Impaired judgment
- Long-term health risks
All of these risks are serious, and proper support is necessary for those struggling with drug dependence.
What is Addiction?
Drug addiction is characterized by an inability to stop or control the use of substances despite experiencing negative consequences.
Types of Addiction
Experts recognize two main types of addiction: chemical and behavioral. Chemical addiction refers to addiction that involves the use of substances. Behavioral addiction involves compulsive behaviors that are carried out despite not having any benefit.
Signs and Symptoms
Common signs of drug addiction may include:
- Development of a tolerance
- Feeling withdrawn from daily activities
- Inability to stop using a substance
- Strong cravings for drugs or alcohol
- Trouble managing daily responsibilities
- Using substances in risky situations (while driving, working, etc.)
- Withdrawal symptoms when you try to quit8
Addiction is serious and requires proper help and support to recover. If you or someone you know is struggling with any of these symptoms, there are resources available that can help.
Dangers of Addiction
Common dangers associated with drug addiction include:
- Altering brain chemistry
- Financial problems
- Irrational behavior
- Legal trouble
- Long-term physical health issues
- Mental health issues
- Relationship difficulties
Difference Between Tolerance and Addiction
The main difference between tolerance and addiction is that tolerance refers to the body getting used to using a substance and addiction refers to someone being unable to control their use of a substance. Oftentimes, tolerance and addiction can go hand in hand, as one can lead to the other.
The diagnosis of drug addiction requires a comprehensive evaluation which often includes an assessment by a psychiatrist, psychologist, or licensed alcohol or drug counselor. If you or someone you know is struggling with an addiction, contacting a medical professional or a treatment center can be a good first step.
Treatment Options for Addiction
There are many treatment options available for proper support and recovery of drug addiction.
Inpatient treatment involves someone staying at a treatment center for a duration while they detox, receive therapy, and work on coping mechanisms to deal with their addiction. Inpatient treatment allows you to live in a structured environment away from temptations to use drugs or alcohol.
Outpatient treatment involves reporting to a treatment center at designated times to help with the detox process and receive therapy to manage addiction. Outpatient treatment can be a good idea for those who have work or family responsibilities that they don’t want to neglect while they are healing.
Residential treatment is similar to inpatient treatment where you stay at a treatment center for a duration of time. However, residential treatment is less intensive and resembles more of a comfortable home setting. Residential treatment will provide you with detox services and therapy, and it will help you create a plan to maintain sobriety long term.
This information should not replace a visit to a doctor or treatment center. If you are concerned that you or a loved one might be suffering from addiction to multiple substances, ask for professional help today.