The words “drug addiction” still have the capacity to bring to one’s mind the homeless “wino” hanging around outside the liquor store and the rescue mission, or the pitiful character lying on a filthy bed in some “flop house” with a tourniquet around his arm and a needle in the vein.
These mental images still ring true; however, more and more today there are people who have a drug addiction and yet look no more different than anyone else, or act in any way that would cause someone to know that the problem is there just by looking at the person.
Drug addiction takes on many different forms today. There are people who are addicted to prescription drugs, narcotic pain medication, sleep aids, or even some over-the-counter drugs or treatment methods (such as nasal spray, cough suppressants, etc.)
The addicted person may have such control (or think so, rather) that it is indeed unnoticeable to the average person that a problem exists. Unless something happens to cause the person’s problem to be brought to light, it may very well be that a person who shares office space with another may never know that that person is struggling with drug addiction.
When (notice I do not say if but WHEN) it is finally exposed, one may find oneself asking,”Why couldn’t I tell? If I had just known, I would have tried to help.” However, no matter how much anyone wanted to or wants to help, the person with the problem must first admit that there is a problem.
Until that happens, no one can do anything. Once the problem is brought out into the open, however, many opportunities exist for one to offer all the support and compassion possible to help the person overcome the problem of drug addiction.