Even though anabolic steroids do not cause the same high as other drugs, they can lead to addiction. Studies have shown that animals will self-administer steroids when they have the chance, just as they do with other addictive drugs. People may continue to abuse steroids despite physical problems, high costs to buy the drugs, and negative effects on their relationships. These behaviors reflect steroids' addictive potential. Research has further found that some steroid users turn to other drugs, such as opioids, to reduce sleep problems and irritability caused by steroids.
Non-medical users of anabolic steroids often “stack” different anabolic steroids over the course of a “cycle” of use. They also administer various ancillary drugs and substances to enhance the desired effects of anabolic steroids or to minimize adverse side effects. The most common liquid (injectable) anabolic steroids encountered in these cases are (oil-based) esters of testosterone (., testosterone cypionate, testosterone enanthate, and testosterone propionate, and a blend of testosterone esters called Sustanon 250) or nandrolone (., nandrolone decanoate). Also popular are Equipoise (boldenone undecylenate) and trenbolone acetate and trenbolone enanthate, as well as the water-based injectable Winstrol (stanozolol). Popular oral anabolic steroids include methandrostenolone (Dianbol), oxandrolone (Anavar) and oxymetholone (Anadrol 50).