Substance Use

Substance Dependence 

By definition, dependence is made up of three types of symptoms: cognitive, behavioral and physiological. With repeated use, a person may develop tolerance to the drug, withdrawal symptoms and compulsive use.

For dependent users, getting and using the drug becomes more and more important—even if they want to cut back or stop, they suffer negative consequences because of their use.

Types of Substance Use


Weighing the benefits and risks of alcohol use is a balancing act. You may read one article about the heart benefits of a glass of red wine. Then, you read another article claiming too much alcohol increases your risk of cancer.

For most adults, drinking small amounts of alcohol is safe. Moderate to heavy drinking, however, can increase your risk for both physical and mental health conditions, as well as social problems.

Be aware of your drinking habits. At-risk drinking increases your health risks and can, over a period of time, lead to alcohol dependence.

Talk to your doctor about the consumption of alcohol with medications. Alcohol can increase the effects of certain medications. It can also create adverse side effects when combined with medications.

Drug Abuse and Dependence

People can become dependent on or addicted to many different types of drugs, including alcohol, tobacco, pain pills and sedatives. Addiction is a complex brain disease that develops over time and is characterized by:

  • Craving
  • Physical dependency
  • Continued use despite negative consequences
  • Drug dependence may result in significant and potentially life-threatening withdrawal symptoms. Experimenting with any drug is dangerous, especially for children and adolescents. For example, people who use nicotine during their teen years are more likely to use other illegal drugs later on.

Just because a drug is legal does not mean it is safe to use. Even a legal medication prescribed by your doctor can become a problem if over-used or abused. This is the fastest-growing area of drug abuse, especially for teenagers.

If your doctor prescribes a medication that could lead to dependence, take the medication exactly as prescribed. Tell your doctor right away if you feel the need to take more than prescribed.

What is the Recovery Support Program?

We built our program around supporting you through your recovery, one day at a time. We’ll help you plan for success and coach you through the tough times. We are here for you, to help you stay focused on your goals for healthy living.

You’ll get support and encouragement to help you feel better and face the future with confidence.

What Can You Expect?

When you choose to join our recovery support program, you’ll work one-on-one with a clinically trained behavioral health coach. Because everyone’s journey is different, your coach will help you create a personalized action plan to help you overcome the challenges of addiction.

Through scheduled phone calls, your coach will help you:

  • Set short- and long-term goals for sobriety.
  • Identify risky behaviors and relapse triggers.
  • Develop coping strategies to deal with cravings.

Substance Use Health Coaching

You’ve begun your journey to healthier living. No matter which stage you are in, we want you to know you are not alone. We are here to help you stay clean and sober through our recovery support program. 

Get Started Today

You’ve made a huge step in the right direction. Health coaches are here to help you stay on track.

Request a Health Coach

If you have questions, contact our health coaching team at 800-868-1032, ext. 25835. You can also email us at

If you decide the recovery support program isn’t right for you, you can leave at any time.

Please note: Only members with health coaching benefits through CBA can take advantage of these resources. Please see your Schedule of Benefits or talk to your Human Resources department to see if you are eligible for CBA's health coaching services.

Support Organizations

Interested in joining a support group or educating yourself about the problem and treatment options? Below are some other trusted organizations with resources on substance use.