Get help today 888-744-0069 or sign up for 24/7 text support.
American Addiction Centers National Rehabs Directory

Steroid Overdose Symptoms and Treatment

Fit man taking steroids

In general, there are two kinds of steroid drugs:

  • Corticosteroids, which are used for medical issues.
  • Anabolic steroids, which may also have indications for medical use, but are often misused to improve strength, appearance, and athletic performance.

Both types of steroids can be misused, and excess dosing can lead to overdose and/or progressive mental and physical health effects.

Signs and Symptoms of Steroid Overdose

Corticosteroids and anabolic steroids are very different. Corticosteroids function similarly to cortisol—a naturally occurring hormone produced in our adrenal glands—and they are used to alter immune and inflammatory responses.1

What to Do in Case of Steroid Overdose

The first thing to do if you think a person may be experiencing a steroid overdose is get them medical help. In the case of a corticosteroid overdose, call 911 right away. The faster a person receives medical help, the better their chances of survival are.

If the person is slowly overdosing on anabolic steroids, professional substance abuse treatment is the best option for their health and survival. Chronic anabolic steroid overdose may not seem like a medical emergency, but it can eventually result in serious consequences for a person’s mental health and physical health.

Steroid Overdose Prevention

If you have been prescribed corticosteroids, the best way to avoid overdose is to only take the medication according to your physician’s guidelines and report any alarming steroid side effects or concerns that you have. Use of steroids outside of professional medical guidelines can result in serious medical repercussions.

If you’re taking anabolic steroids, you could be severely damaging your health over time. To avoid the development of dangerous symptoms, avoid ANY use of anabolic steroids. If you’re finding yourself unable to stop taking anabolic steroids, consider substance abuse treatment.

Treatment can help you learn how to cope with your compulsions to use this damaging substance and may address any mental health issues that may be contributing to use of these drugs, such as body dysmorphic disorder.

Doctor having serious conversation with male patient

Steroid Addiction Treatment Programs

A structured treatment program can also help you deal with withdrawal symptoms that may be difficult to cope with alone:3

  • Exhaustion.
  • Restlessness.
  • Lowered appetite.
  • Insomnia.
  • Decreased sex drive.
  • Depression.
  • Suicidal ideation.

These can be especially problematic as the user is coping with the extreme mood swings brought on by the steroid abuse itself. Suicide is a major risk factor for recovering steroid abusers.3

Certain treatment facilities may also be able to help restore a steroid user to hormonal balance with hormone therapy, which can help reduce or reverse adverse side effects of long-term steroid abuse.3

Steroid abuse treatment can also help a person understand why they began abusing the drug in the first place and find effective coping strategies for when they face future temptations to use steroids. Identifying underlying reasons for the abuse is a major part of recovery, and professional treatment can help a person find better ways to address these underlying issues without turning back to drugs. Rehab facilities are located throughout the U.S., and many offer specialized treatment that can cater to individual needs. You can use SAMHSA’s Behavioral Services Locator to search for treatment centers. Many state government websites will also provide local drug and alcohol resources to those in need. To find your state government’s website, do a web search for your state name and ‘.gov.’ Once your state website is located, substance use resources shouldn’t be hard to find, and they should provide further phone contacts for your assistance.

American Addiction Centers (AAC) is a leading provider of addiction treatment programs and has trusted rehab facilities across the country. For help finding a program, please call us free today at .

Steroid Addiction Treatment Levels of Care

Recommended Steroid Rehab-Related Articles

Was this page helpful?
Thank you for your feedback.

American Addiction Centers (AAC) is committed to delivering original, truthful, accurate, unbiased, and medically current information. We strive to create content that is clear, concise, and easy to understand.

Read our full editorial policy

While we are unable to respond to your feedback directly, we'll use this information to improve our online help.