ClickCease What Is Polysubstance Abuse | Polysubstance Abuse Rehab Center | NH

What is Polysubstance Abuse? And Does It Affect You?

Authored by Granite Recovery Centers    Reviewed by James Gamache    Last Updated: August 27th, 2021


James Gamache Medical Reviewer
Jim is a Licensed Clinical Social Worker (LICSW) and Licensed Masters Level Addictions Counselor (MLADC). He has been working in the field of mental health/addiction treatment since 1995. Jim earned a Bachelor’s Degree in Human Services from Springfield College in 2000, and a Masters Degree in Social Work from Boston University in 2002. In 2002 Jim was hired by the Mental Health Center of Greater Manchester holding the position of Clinical Case Manager. From 2004-2019, Jim was employed at WestBridge Inc. During his time at WestBridge, Jim held the following positions; Clinician, Team Leader, Director, & Chief Operations Officer. In 2019 Jim transitioned employment to GateHouse Treatment Center as the Clinical Director for 10 months. In October of 2020 Jim transitioned to Granite Recovery Centers and is currently serving as the Senior VP of Clinical Services and Quality Assurance.

A growing number of people in the nation are experiencing a problem known as polysubstance abuse. But what is polysubstance abuse? And how can it affect you? The answers to these questions could just save your life. Thankfully, a drug addiction rehab center in New Hampshire can help you recover. So read on to find out polysubstance abuse definition and more information about this epidemic.

What is Polysubstance Abuse?

When asking, “what is polysubstance abuse?” there are many possible answers. The most straightforward definition is behaviors that include taking multiple drugs at the same time. The type of medications taken often vary. For example, some may mix cocaine and alcohol to create a “speedball.” This combination creates a vivid reaction due to being both uppers and downers. A person may experience a racing heart, along with a slowing of their mental acuity.

However, people may also mix prescription drugs too. For example, some may take opiate painkillers and anxiety medicines to create a high. The idea behind this abuse is to create unique combinations that you can’t get with a single drug. The dangers are often incredibly serious because some medicines may cause adverse reactions when mixed. Therefore, you must understand why people behave in this way and how to get treatment. In many cases, people mix their medications with other substances leading to more serious addiction and mental health problems. If you find yourself with a co-occurring disorder it is best to come to our dual diagnosis rehab center.

Why People Engage in These Activities

Typically, people engage in polysubstance abuse for one of two reasons. First, some want to enhance the effects of a drug. As mentioned previously, you can mix downers like painkillers and opiates to create a more significant high. Others intentionally mix effects to create different combinations. This situation includes mixing uppers and downers to create conflicting actions in the body. The dangers here are often ignored for the sake of the buzz.

Unfortunately, people trying either approach put themselves at a high risk of danger. Both short- and long-term effects can be quite high. Overdoses are particularly common. Other people may walk away with permanent brain damage. Some may slip into a coma while others die. The dangers here are too high to tolerate, but many still engage in this activity. As a result, you need to know not only “what is polysubstance abuse?” but the dangers as well.

Dangers of Polysubstance Abuse

The polysubstance abuse definition includes a series of symptoms and side effects. For example, short-term dangers include higher adverse effects of the drug taken. For example, the paranoia caused by cocaine may be increased when also taking methamphetamine. Some people end up addicted to multiple substances and creating a very hard to escape the situation. This type of addiction often requires a very focused care option to manage. In many cases, a person may need medical detox that is carefully monitored to properly rid the body of the physical dependence of the two substances. Granite Recovery Centers provides medical detoxification for people who do not need immediate medical intervention, are not a danger to themselves, and are capable of self-evacuation in the event of an emergency.

And as hinted before, polysubstance abuse also increases overdose risk. Overdoses may occur more quickly and be more dangerous in this scenario. Some may also experience worsened mental health problems. Sometimes, this situation creates a tight web from which it can be hard to escape. So when asking “what is polysubstance abuse?” you also need to know the treatments available.

Knowing the Polysubstance Abuse Definition Helps You

If you abuse substances, ask yourself a few questions to gauge your risk for polysubstance abuse. You need to know “what is polysubstance abuse?” while assessing your behaviors. Just a few situations that may indicate an issue include:

  • Mixing alcohol with illicit or prescription drugs
  • Craving two substances at the same time
  • Wanting a more significant high with your substance
  • Taking multiple prescription drugs to get a high
  • Experiencing various types of withdrawal symptoms

If you find yourself a victim of these situations, you need to get professional help. High-quality rehab can help you detox in a streamlined way. The dangers of polysubstance abuse make this step particularly vital. Withdrawing from multiple drugs at once is very dangerous. Therefore, you need 24-hour care to walk away from rehab feeling free and sober for good. In addition, you need the mental support and empowerment of our Newport addiction therapy programs for lasting recovery.

Let Us Guide You to Sobriety

If you need to know “what is polysubstance abuse?” or need treatment, please contact Granite Recovery Centers. Call 855.712.7784 to get detox and residential care. You can also get group counseling, holistic therapy, behavioral adjustments, and more. Let us take care of you and your needs.

At Granite Recovery Centers, we want to provide accurate information about health and addiction so that our readers can make informed decisions.

We have credentialed medical doctors & clinicians who specialize in addiction treatment review the information on our website before it is published. We use credible sources such as government websites and journal articles when citing statistics or other medically related topics.