Substance use disorder is a complex mental health condition that affects a person’s ability to control their drug or alcohol use despite the harm it causes. Angela Harvey, MSN, APRN, PMHNP-BC, AGPCNP-BC, understands the toll substance use disorder takes on you and your loved ones, and provides medication-assisted treatment (MAT) at her practice, A1 Medical & Behavioral Health in St. Petersburg, Florida. For comprehensive substance use disorder care, call or schedule your in-office or telemedicine appointment online today.

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What is substance use disorder?

Substance use disorder is a mental illness that affects brain function and behavior. People with substance use disorder have such an intense need to use a substance (drugs, alcohol, tobacco) that it interferes with their ability to function. They continue to use the substance despite the harm it causes.

What are the symptoms of substance use disorder?

Substance use disorder symptoms are grouped into four categories. These categories include:

Impaired control

Impaired control refers to the strong cravings you have for the substance. These cravings are so intense, it makes it hard to stop using even when you try.

Social problems

Substance use disorder affects personal and professional relationships. Social problems may include withdrawal from friends and family or the inability to complete work or school assignments.

Risky use

Risky use refers to the continued use of the substance despite the harm it causes. People with substance use disorder may also engage in risky activities, like driving while intoxicated.

Dependency effects

Over time, you develop a tolerance to the substance and need to take more to get the same effects. You may also have withdrawal symptoms when you stop using.

If you or someone you love is struggling with substance use disorder, schedule a consultation at A1 Medical & Behavioral Health for help.

What happens during a substance use disorder evaluation?

Mrs. Harvey takes an empathetic and patient-centered approach to care. She aims to find the root cause of your substance use and create a comprehensive plan that helps you heal.

She asks detailed questions about your drug or alcohol use and your personal goals. She reviews your medical and mental health history and performs various psychological tests to understand your current emotional state.

Testing may also help identify underlying mental health conditions related to your substance use. Many people with substance use disorder also struggle with other mental illnesses like depression and anxiety.

What are the treatments for substance use disorder?

At A1 Medical & Behavioral Health, Mrs. Harvey offers medication-assisted treatment (MAT) for substance use disorder. MAT is a holistic approach to care that includes prescription medications to control cravings and withdrawal symptoms and behavioral therapy to help you understand your addiction and the steps you need to take to recover.

Mrs. Harvey may also prescribe psychiatric medication to manage any underlying mental health condition.

Substance use disorder is a disease, not a choice. For help getting back on the right path, call A1 Medical & Behavioral Health or schedule your consultation online today.