What Are the Different Types of Substance Abuse?

It’s a sad fact that 10% of Americans will suffer from some form of substance abuse over the course of their lives. 

You might be suffering yourself, or have a loved one who’s experiencing a problem.

That’s why it’s so important to understand the different types of substance abuse. Having greater knowledge of the issues can help you address the issues more effectively. Read on to gain a better understanding of substance abuse.


While the majority of people enjoy a little alcohol from time to time, overindulging on a regular basis can be a sign that things are getting out of hand.

Alcohol abuse is one of the most common forms of substance abuse. Sometimes it’s pernicious, growing slowly on a person and causing major problems before they even realize they’re suffering from an addiction issue. 

Although alcohol abuse is perhaps a little less stigmatized than other forms of addiction, it can be just as devastating, leading to severe health and social problems. If you think you or a loved one is suffering from this kind of substance abuse problem, it’s important to get help as soon as possible. 


Opioid addiction is a growing issue across America. A type of depressant, these drugs are often used as pain relief and can be majorly addictive. 

A person taking painkillers to treat a painful medical condition can find themselves struggling to get by without their medication, long after their medical condition has cleared up.

Long-term opioid addiction can be devastating, causing the subject to suffer all kinds of adverse health effects, potentially ending in fatality. Social issues are also a major problem, with opioid addiction often going hand in hand with bankruptcy, job loss, and family strife. 


Cannabis is another substance that is commonly abused.

While cannabis is now legal in many states and can be used for medical reasons, it’s important to remember that it’s a drug. Just like alcohol and opioids, if it’s overused, it can have some major detrimental health and social impacts. 

Addiction might be an issue if a person can’t seem to get by for even a short time without consuming it.

Other Types of Substance Abuse

Although the types of abuse listed above are some of the most common kinds, there are many more types out there. Practically any chemical substance which alters the human body can be abused.

Substance abuse can come in many different forms and even if it’s of a type that’s unfamiliar, that doesn’t make it any less damaging. 

Getting Help

Substance abuse can seem an almost insurmountable problem. But it’s crucial to remember that countless people have overcome substance abuse issues, many with the help of a quality rehabilitation clinic.

Lots of people have overcome their addiction issues at Hope Rising Recovery, a rehabilitation clinic offering expert treatment, served up with care and compassion. 

Learn More

We hope our article on the different types of substance abuse was helpful to you. 

Are you looking for more information on other health issues and other topics? If so, please check out our blog, where there are plenty of other articles to keep you informed.