Substance Use Disorders and Treatment


If you are currently experiencing a life-threatening emergency, please call 911 or go to the nearest hospital emergency room immediately. If you’re thinking about harming yourself, call the National Suicide and Crisis Lifeline at 988, or the 24-hour National Suicide Prevention Lifeline toll-free at 1-800-273-8255 to be connected to a trained counselor at a suicide crisis center nearest you. For youth under the age of 18, call the Division of Child and Family Services’ (DCFS) Mobile Crisis Response Team (MCRT) at 702-486-7865 in Southern Nevada or 775-688-1670 in Northern Nevada.

Addiction is a complex but treatable disease.

Addiction affects the way a person thinks, feels and acts. No one plans to become addicted, but it happens when a person is no longer able to control the decision to drink, use drugs, or take part in other unhealthy behaviors. Many people who abuse drugs or alcohol are aware they have a problem but find it difficult to stop on their own.

Relapse can happen. As with other chronic health conditions, substance use treatment may be ongoing and can be adjusted based on how the patient responds. Treatment plans need to be reviewed often and modified to fit their changing needs.

Symptoms of substance use disorder.

A person with an addiction will often continue to use despite experiencing serious negative consequences or putting themselves or others in harm’s way.

Other symptoms of substance use disorder include:

  • Tolerance: A person will need increasingly larger amounts of alcohol or drugs.
  • Craving: A person will feel a strong need, desire, or urge to use alcohol or drugs. Craving is a primary symptom of addiction.
  • Loss of control: A person often will drink more alcohol or take more drugs than they mean to, or may use alcohol or drugs at a time or place they hadn’t planned.
  • Physical dependence or withdrawal symptoms: In some cases when alcohol or drug use is stopped, a person may experience withdrawal symptoms which can include nausea, sweating, shakiness, and extreme anxiety.

Explore available treatment options.

Substance use therapy is individualized – not every outpatient or residential treatment program works for every person. We can help find what works. If you or someone you love is struggling with addiction, call our behavioral health team toll-free at 1-800 873-2246, TTY 711.