Find out more about the various forms of addiction:

  Sex And Love  
  Drugs Addiction  

Drug addiction, or known as substance use disorder in Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, 5th Edition (DSM-5), is the compulsive use of a substance despite negative or dangerous consequences. It affects anyone from any socioeconomic status and class. The important characteristic is an underlying change in brain chemistry. Repeated relapses and drug cravings when exposed to a trigger are some of the physical symptoms of the brain chemistry change. 

Stopping the drug use after frequent use leads to acute withdrawal symptoms. To avoid the uncomfortable withdrawal symptoms, the person seeks relief through drug use. The addictive cycle is reinforced and strengthened. Before the destructive cycle is broken, drug addiction affects the user's career, relationships and financial situations. DSM-5 has outlined 11 criteria as symptoms of drug addiction.  

  • Taking the substance in larger amounts or for longer than intended to
  • Persistent desire or unsuccessful attempts to cut down or stop using the substance
  • Spending a lot of time getting, using, or recovering from use of the substance
  • Cravings and urges to use the substance
  • Recurrent substance use resulting in failure to fulfill major role obligations at work, school or home.
  • Continuing to use, even when it causes problems in relationships
  • Important social, occupational or recreational activities are reduced or given up because of substance use
  • Recurrent substance use in situations which is dangerous
  • Continuing to use, even when the you know you have a physical or psychological problem that could have been caused or made worse by the substance
  • Needing more of the substance to get the effect you want or a diminished effect with continued use of the same amount of substance (tolerance)
  • Development of withdrawal symptoms, which can be relieved by taking more of the substance.

Severity of substance use disorder

Breaking a drug addiction cycle is difficult, but not impossible. Help, like addiction counselling, educational and therapy programmes and 12-Step Self-help recovery support group, is available for the individual and family members. 

If you or someone you know exhibit the aboved symptoms, no matter how mild or severe, we strongly encourage you to make an appointment with us. Call 6547 5459 or email:


To find out more about our drug addiction counselling programme (SOAR), click here


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11 Jalan Ubi, Block 5, #01-41, Singapore 409074    Fax: 6547 5458 | Tel: 6547 5459