Steroid use and addiction can lead to a number of physical and mental health problems. Largely popular among young men and athletes, the use of steroids was first popularized during the 1954 Olympics. Since that time, steroids have exploded in both popularity and widespread use. Touted as giving a person more muscle mass, testosterone, and power, the reality of steroid use is quite the opposite. While many people feel an initial boost when using this drug, the long term and lasting effects of use are nothing short of terrifying. By learning the signs of steroid addiction, you can help yourself or a loved one get the help they deserve.
What are Steroids?
By definition, steroids are a compound consisting largely of hormones, alkaloids, and vitamins. Because of their contents and chemical makeup, steroids are considered an artificial or “man-made” drug. Steroids work by lowering the activity of the immune system, as well as decreasing inflammation. While licensed physicians might prescribe certain steroids for legitimate medical purposes, anabolic steroids are mostl used illegally, with the intention of producing rapid muscle growth and strength in its users.
Banned from all major sporting events aside from bodybuilding, in recent years steroid use has become more and more taboo. Despite this, steroid use in professional and amateur sports alike is very common. Additionally, steroid use in places like the gym or recreational areas has also been on the rise. Because of its popularity, it is essential to learn the dangers of steroids.
Dangers of Steroids
Using steroids in any capacity can put a person’s health in dire jeopardy, particularly young men. Contrary to what many studies once suggested, it is now commonly accepted that the male brain and body are not fully developed until a young man reaches the age of 25. Because of this, many young men who use drugs or steroids put themselves and their development at severe risk.
When a person uses steroids, their brain is affected in several key negative ways. Steroids have the ability to produce a phenomenon known as “roid rage.” The term refers to the overly aggressive, sometimes violent tendencies that some people adopt after using steroids. This is due to an excess of hormones, including unnatural levels of testosterone entering one’s system. While the point behind these hormones is to encourage muscle growth, the brain becomes overwhelmed by the excess amount of synthetic hormones. This often manifests as aggression, rage, violence, and psychotic episodes.
Furthermore, if a person already has an undiagnosed co-occuring mental health disorder, steroid use can result in further mental health complications, and even full psychological breakdowns. Counterintuitively, though steroids add testosterone to one’s system, they have the negative effect of disrupting one’s natural testosterone production. This means that after a person stops using steroids, their gonads can dramatically decrease in size. Additionally, natural testosterone production is reduced. This results in a host of physical and mental health problems.
Signs of Steroid Addiction
By learning the signs of steroid addiction, a person can better identify signs of abuse in themselves and their loved ones. After identifying that they have a problem, a person can begin their treatment journey. Typically, signs of steroid addiction may include:
- Rapid weight or muscle gain
- Mood swings
- Irrational thinking
- Enlarged breasts (in men)
- Violent or aggressive outburst or actions
While this list is not exhaustive, knowing how to identify these signs can help a person adequately identify steroid use.
Steroid Withdrawal and Treatment
Fortunately, there are treatment options for those addicted to steroid use. Typically, this process begins with a steroid detoxification treatment. This rids the body of toxins or residuals of the steroid. Next, treatment can begin. With a team of certified medical professionals at one’s back, treatment can be a therapeutic process with little to no discomfort.
- Body ache
- Loss of appetite
In contrast to medically supervised detox, solo withdrawal is never recommended. The dangers of solo withdrawal include a higher likelihood of relapse as well as the dangers associated with unsupervised detox. People can become mentally and emotionally unstable during the withdrawal process, so an effective recovery facility will monitor and protect the patient via numerous safety protocols.
Find Addiction Treatment for Steroids in California
Here at New Life House, we are waiting with open arms to help you during each step of your recovery process. Allow our team of highly skilled and compassionate professionals to give you the tools necessary for lasting recovery. New Life House is proud to offer sober living and treatment options for those struggling with dependency. There has never been a better time to reclaim your freedom from addiction and to begin living the life that you deserve. Contact our admissions page today and take the first steps in your journey to recovery.
Last Updated on August 27, 2022