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How to Help a Steroid Addict

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Help for Steroids Addicts

People who are addicted to steroids may need professional help to stop taking the drug. While the dependency that develops may be different from other, more commonly abused substances, anabolic steroids can indeed be addictive – meaning that the body and mind may crave the drug, even when a person wants to stop taking it.

How to Approach a Loved One Who Is Addicted to Steroids

Steroids are often abused by athletes and bodybuilders who set high goals for themselves. Anabolic steroid use can be difficult to overcome, because many users report feeling good about themselves while on steroids. They may also be receiving recognition for standout athletic performances bolstered by steroid use. Admitting to having a drug abuse problem or agreeing to seek treatment can be a difficult process for people addicted to these drugs.

One study found that the best way to support a loved one during treatment is to learn about and understand their drug use. Do your best to learn how the drug affects the body and what may have led your loved one to abuse steroids. Express understanding and genuine concern for their health. Make it clear that you will support them in getting the help they need, but do not continue enabling behaviors, like providing money for steroids. If you need help talking to your loved one about treatment, Community Reinforcement and Family Training (CRAFT) can teach you the skills to positively persuade your loved one to enter treatment.

In some cases, depression during withdrawal can lead to suicide attempts. With this in mind, it is extremely important that as the user’s family and friends, you remain supportive during their time of need and watch for any red flags. If you or a loved one is experiencing suicidal thoughts, call 911 immediately.

Receive 24/7 text support at your convenience with American Addiction Centers. Our team is well prepared to advise on all things treatment and help you find the care you need. We’ve helped thousands recover from addiction and we can help you too.

Steroids Addiction Treatment

If you are facing an addiction to steroids, you are not alone. There are programs designed specifically to help you quit the drug and get back on your feet. Inpatient steroid addiction treatment programs provide 24-hour care, with access to medical services if needed, so that you receive the best and most professional care possible.


Many inpatient programs will begin with a supervised detox period, during which serious steroid withdrawal symptoms may be managed. The anabolic steroid withdrawal syndrome may vary across individuals, but may include symptoms such as:

  • Difficulty sleeping.
  • Reduced sex drive.
  • Headache.
  • Tiredness.
  • Muscle and joint pain.
  • Anorexia.
  • Mood disorders.

Depression with suicidal ideation is the most immediately life-threatening symptom. If you detox within an inpatient facility, medical professionals will monitor for changes in mood. Should severe depressive symptoms arise, close supervision, antidepressant medications and other forms of therapy may be utilized.

Once your initial period of withdrawal has ended, addiction treatment will consist mainly of ongoing therapy – either on an inpatient or outpatient basis – to address the issues fueling the steroid abuse and addiction. You may benefit from therapy aimed to improve your self-esteem and help you learn to love yourself and your body, as research shows some people are driven to use steroids as a result of poor body satisfaction and an obsession with muscularity, or a need to get increasingly bigger. If you abuse steroids, you may have experienced these feelings of muscle dysmorphia or “reverse anorexia syndrome.” Feelings of low self-esteem and depression during withdrawal may also be attributed to temporary hypogonadism – or the failure of the gonads (testes or ovaries) to secrete adequate levels of testosterone or estrogen.

Participating in therapy can help you learn to cope with any triggers that could potentially result in relapse. In addition, adjunct therapy such as yoga and meditation may be successful in helping you reduce stress and anxiety during withdrawal.

Support groups can serve as an additional support for continued abstinence from steroids.

Are Steroids Addictive?

Steroids are addictive. The drugs introduce additional hormones to the body, and this can result in the body craving the drugs at specific intervals each day. The signs of addiction to steroid can sometimes be very clear. For example:

  • Steroids result in the increase of lean muscle mass quickly, so if someone you know suddenly is incredibly muscular, they may be using steroids.
  • A person taking steroids may have track marks from injections.
  • There may be bottles of pills lying around in their gym bag.
  • You might notice a strange odor from use of steroid creams.
  • Sudden breakouts of acne can also indicate steroid abuse.

American Addiction Centers maintains a strong partnership with a large group of insurance companies at our addiction treatment facilities. Start the journey to recovery and find out instantly if your insurance provider may be able to cover all or part of the cost of rehab and associated therapies.

Am I Addicted to Steroids?

If you find yourself craving it or needing more of it than usual to achieve the same effects, steroid abuse and addiction may be indicated. If you are addicted, you likely need help to stop taking steroids. If you have trouble going without the drug or if you suffer withdrawal symptoms when you stop taking it, you may have become addicted or developed a dependency on the drug.

Steroids do have some medical applications; however, dependence can develop even if you begin taking the drug for legitimate medical reasons. If you begin taking the drug more often or taking it differently than prescribed, you may be addicted.

There is hope in recovery.
Call us at to find the information you need to stop taking steroids.

Call Our Hotline Today

If you or a loved one has taken anabolic steroids, it’s okay to seek help for a dependency or addiction problem. With help from a medical provider, you may be able to reduce the side effects of withdrawal and be able to minimize your time on a potentially dangerous drug.

Call and our 24-hour hotline will be happy to provide you with rehab and treatment information over the phone. You can also contact free narcotics and drug abuse hotline numbers.

How to Help Someone with Alcohol or Illicit Drug Addiction

Help for Prescription Drug Abuse

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Patrick Condron, M.Sc., M.A.C., is an addiction specialist and drug and alcohol counselor. He is Executive Director of Lazarus House, Inc., a transitional residential program for men and women who continue to work on their recovery towards independent living.
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