Substance Misuse

If you or a loved one are struggling with substance misuse or abuse, reaching out for help is crucial. Substance misuse can lead to other harmful illnesses with serious consequences for your mental and physical well-being. Here at PATH Behavioral Healthcare, you can count on our experienced team of doctors, therapists, and counselors to help you overcome your challenges with substance misuse. We have helped many clients regain control of their lives, and we can do the same for you. Contact a clinic near you to start your path to optimized health today.

man sitting depressed with a glass of wine and an empty liquor bottle, shot glasses and his car key in a shot glass

What is Substance Misuse?

Substance misuse is a form of substance-related disorder in which a person’s use of a substance leads to physical, mental, or social harm. This can include:

  • Risky use of drugs and alcohol — such as drinking before driving
  • Drug addiction — when the drug causes compulsive behavior that users cannot control
  • Alcohol addiction — when drinking causes compulsive behavior that users cannot control
  • Dangerous use of prescription drugs (legal or illegal)
  • Over-the-counter drug abuse

Substance abuse or misuse are often used as blanket terms for substance dependence and substance abuse disorder. Many people believe that you either have one or the other, but there are multiple combinations of these disorders that can occur. Substance abuse can be either a one-time activity or chronic behavior.

What are the Signs of Substance Misuse?

Substance dependence is diagnosed when three or more of the following symptoms are present within a single year: 

  • Tolerance (needing larger doses to get the same effect) 
  • Withdrawal symptoms 
  • Drug-seeking behavior to obtain the substance (doctor shopping, stealing) 
  • Spending a lot of time getting, using, or recovering from the effects of the drug 
  • Decreased participation in important social, occupational, or recreational activities because of the drug 
  • Continued use of the drug despite knowing it is causing a physical or psychological problem

woman sitting on porch nursing a hangover with coffee against her head

Substance abuse disorder is diagnosed when two or more of the following symptoms are present within a single year:

Failure to fulfill responsibilities at work, school, or home as a result of substance use

Continued use despite having social or interpersonal problems because of the drug (fights, accidents)

Unable to cut down or stop using the drug

Using more of the drug over time

Legal problems as a result of having used the drug




Disordered thinking

Emotionally flat or lack of emotional expression

How Can Substance Misuse Be Treated?

Treatments for substance misuse are highly individualized, as treatment will depend on what substance is being used, and what effects it has had on the individual’s mental and physical health. Most treatment plans use a combination of detoxification, therapies, and certain medications that can help relieve withdrawal symptoms from some substances. With PATH Behavioral Healthcare, we provide clients with access to a full continuum of care options that are specifically designed to meet all of their individual treatment needs.

How PATH Integrated Healthcare Can Help

Because substance misuse and abuse disorders can require complex treatment plans, PATH offers clients a fully integrated healthcare system. Our system runs on our promise of  “zero barrier care,” meaning that our clients can connect with their doctors, therapists, and case managers while managing their medications and receiving treatment — all under one roof.

nurse and patient speaking and smiling

Contact a Clinic Today

We are an organization that specializes in providing high-quality, innovative behavioral health treatment via strength-based solutions and positive approaches to care. Your well-being is our number one priority. Whether you are seeking help for yourself or someone you care about, we are ready to provide the highest standard of care in a compassionate and non-judgmental manner. Choose PATH Behavioral Healthcare as your trusted partner on your journey towards wellness. Contact us today and let our medical professionals in Ohio, Louisiana, and Utah help you regain control over your life.