How to Tell if Your Coworker is Addicted to Drugs

Signs of drug use can sometimes be tricky to spot – especially if you are unsure as to what to look for. But for employers, it’s important to know these signs to make sure your employee can get the support that they need. This tool can help encourage employers to look for ways to identify and assist employees who are struggling with substance abuse, which can make a huge difference in the lives of both the individuals and the business. Calls to numbers on a specific treatment center listing will be routed to that treatment center. Calls to any general helpline (non-facility specific 1-8XX numbers) could be forwarded to SAMSHA or a verified treatment provider.

Observation is key to early detection of emerging patterns of performance and attendance problems. Do not wait for performance or attendance to deteriorate to the point that the employee has little chance of remediating the situation. Addressing potential issues before they become serious problems is an important step in creating a safe, healthy, and productive workplace. Maintain all employees’ rights under the policy and follow the same procedures and policy in the same way for all employees.

How Can You Help an Addicted Coworker?

Being able to identify and document the signs of illicit drug use and intoxication on the job is a key set of skills for a supervisor to help ensure workplace safety. Ask the employee to come to a private area with another supervisor, a human resources representative, security, or some combination of these. Inquire, in a nonjudgmental tone, about the behavior, rumor, or report. Stick to the facts, and do not involve the names of other employees.

signs of employee drug use

Choose the type of assistance based on the established effectiveness of available treatment options for particular issues. Identify supervisory support to help the employee improve performance/attendance. You will be more effective if you have a log of specific examples to refer to when addressing the employee.

Spotting The Signs of Drug Abuse

Once the situation is documented and everyone is in agreement, only then should you meet with the employee for a discussion of what has been observed. You then have the options to follow whatever is stated in your company policy. Suspicions regarding an employee who may be under the influence may come from co-workers or clients, often before it is noticed by a supervisor.

  • These shifts do not necessarily mean drug use, but they often mean something has changed for the employee and needs to be addressed and reasons for the new behavior found.
  • Whether they can’t afford to pay their water bill anymore or they simply do not care about their hygiene, an employee that barely showers is a clear warning sign that they may be struggling with drug abuse.
  • The employee could be physically ill, experiencing severe stress or fatigue, be under emotional distress, or experiencing ketosis.
  • If your policy allows for it, contact your drug test facility to notify it that you have an employee on the way for reasonable suspicion testing.
  • SAMHSA’s mission is to lead public health and service delivery efforts that promote mental health, prevent substance misuse, and provide treatments and supports to foster recovery while ensuring equitable access and better outcomes.
  • Using drugs impairs decision-making abilities andphysically impairs people.

EAP programs are in place in many companies, offering confidential referrals to counseling, rehabs and support groups for substance abuse and many other kinds of problems that might affect an employee’s performance on the job. Individuals who suffer from substance abuse addiction may be extremely good at masking their symptoms while others may be obvious. But by ordering drug test kits and knowing what signs of drug abuse to look for, you can find do i have an allergy to alcohol out whether you have employees that have a drug problem. Another sign of a potential employee drug abuse is a change in job performance. If you start to see a noticeable dip in an employee’s productivity or unusually poor quality in their work product, seek out the cause. However, for some professionals in addiction, their work is the last area to slip, so if your ordinarily reliable employee shows signs of decline, don’t wait to address it.

What are the signs of drug use in the workplace?

That’s why it’s crucial for managers to maintain specific records of employee performance. Marijuana abuse might actually result in weight gain due to a side-effect which makes individuals hungrier, so it’s best to pay attention to any dramatic physical changes that an employee may go through. Even though some employees can use eye drops to remove bloodshot eyes, you can still see changes in the pupils or the glazed look they may have. Timothy A. Dimoff, CPP, president of SACS Consulting & Investigative Services, Inc., is a speaker, trainer and author and a leading authority in high-risk workplace and human resource security and crime issues.

signs of employee drug use

A study by OSHA states that the most dangerous occupations, such as mining and construction, also have the highest rates of drug use by their employees. This entry was posted in Drug Testing Articles and tagged drug test, drug testing, Rapid Detect, signs of drug abuse, One of the signs of drug abuse also consists of lack of concern for personal hygiene. First and foremost, you must have a written drug and alcohol testing policy. It should include drug and alcohol testing for reasonable suspicion. A general policy statement is not enough to permit testing; if your policy does not include testing for reasonable suspicion, you may want to consult a workplace consulting firm or your legal counsel to help you implement one.

Drug Test

One of the first signs of a substance issue is a change in an employee’s normal behavior or demeanor. Dramatic shifts such as lashing out at colleagues or lying are easy to flag, but other behavioral changes may be more subtle. While not all of these behaviors mean the person is abusing a substance, it is crucial to have a conversation with the employee to determine the reasons behind their actions, how long alcohol stays your system urine & blood test whether or not it is a substance abuse problem. For all workplaces that involve the use of heavy machinery and vehicles, like trucking companies, public transportation, and limousine companies, ensuring a drug-free workplace is crucial. Random drug testing has been shown to drastically reduce drugs in the workplace, but employees can still show up to work under the influence of drugs and alcohol.

You must observe and document substantial change from the person’s normal appearance, behavior, and/or job performance. If a workplace is required to follow federal testing regulations , a qualified substance abuse professional may need to conduct both the initial and return-to-work assessments. SAPs are available through third-party national networks, and they typically offer fixed fees based on each individual case.

Drug-Free Workplace RR – Related Resources

You can do this privately or outside of work if it makes you more comfortable. Not only do they run the risk of having deadly or dangerous accidents occur, but substance abusers also cost employers money and hurt them financially. Drug addiction in the workplace can affect everyone, not just the addicted individual. Knowing how to tell if someone is addicted to drugs can save jobs, money – and lives.

Recovery from alcohol, prescription drugs, or other drug problems is a gradual, nonlinear process. To prevent relapse and to promote sustained recovery, supportive re-entry and follow-up are key. Nevada and the city of New York have passed laws on pre-employment marijuana testing. But manufacturers sometimes see the testing differently from companies that have dropped it.

SAMHSA’s mission is to lead public health and service delivery efforts that promote mental health, prevent substance misuse, and provide treatments and supports to foster recovery while ensuring equitable access and better outcomes. The employer should continue to be supportive of employees who have been referred for assistance with problems related to alcohol and misuse of prescription or other drugs. An EAP can provide supervisors with guidance on supportive measures. Always document all signs and symptoms leading up to and during a reasonable suspicion drug test.

Employees who use drugs are likely to miss work, which may negatively impact costs and customer service. They’re also more likely to file workmen’s compensation claims, as workplace accidents are more likely, or, in some cases, it may increase employer’s liability if employees harm others or steal. NSC and NORC found health care costs for employees who have a substance use disorder are almost double the costs of an average employee with no SUD.

Constructively addressing the problem involves organizing a well-structured performance meeting. If your company has an employee assistance program , the program might be able to provide guidance on how to hold an alcohol intervention for a loved one the process. During the consult, the EAP can also help coach you, as the supervisor, through the constructive assessment process. Find treatment facilities and programs in the United States or U.S.

For many people, the casual use of certain substances, like alcohol or drugs, becomes a serious problem because of one thing — denial. The refusal to acknowledge a chemical dependency can lead to reckless abuse, the effects of which spill over into the other areas of a user’s life. Substance abuse costs the Canadian health care system $8 billion for funding of substance abuse treatment centres and outpatient clinics. A drug policy that includes reasonable suspicion testing means the employee has to adhere to your testing requests.






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