Studies show that the success of one's recovery is determined not only by the type of drug rehab program they attend, but the amount of effort put into applying what is learned in treatment when returning home and making the necessary changes in life to remain sober and be successful, happy, responsible and productive in life. Physical addiction is only one component of drug addiction; many addicts become so obsessed with achieving the next high that they must relearn appropriate behaviors for everyday life outside the context of drug use. A drug rehab program can go a long way in helping a person to realize that they are not alone in their struggle to overcome their addiction, and to address the underlying psychological issues that may have contributed to their addiction. Additionally, a drug rehab center will provide structured activities and predictable routines that have proven crucial to newly sober people.
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Typically, when a person is addicted to a drug or alcohol, they are not be able to control their use and they will continue using in spite of the harm that their substance abuse is causing to themselves and everyone around them. Addiction can cause an intense craving for drugs or alcohol. The person may want to stop using, but most people find they cannot do it on their own.
Not everyone who uses drugs or alcohol becomes addicted, but for many what starts as casual or recreational use, often leads to addiction. Addiction can cause serious, long-term consequences including problems with physical and mental health, relationships, employment and the criminal justice system.
Are you struggling with an addiction problem that is out of control? If so, you may feel isolated, helpless, or ashamed. Or perhaps you're worried about a friend or loved ones addiction. In either case, you are not alone. Addiction is a serious problem that many people are faced with in the world today.
The good news is that you or your loved one can get better. There is hope. No matter how severe the addiction problem may be and no matter how powerless you feel to stop it, learning about the nature of addiction, how it develops, what it looks like, and why it has such a powerful hold, will give you a better understanding of the problem and how to deal with it.
The path to addiction typically begins with experimentation. You or your loved one may have tried a drug or alcohol out of curiosity, because friends were doing it, or in an effort to relieve some other problem. At first, the substance seems to solve the problem or make you feel better, so you use the substance more and more.
But as the addiction advances, obtaining and taking the drug becomes more and more important and your ability to stop using is undermined. What begins as a voluntary choice turns into a physical and psychological addiction. The good news is that drug addiction and alcoholism are treatable. With treatment and support, you can counteract the disruptive effects of addiction and regain control of your life.
While each drug of abuse produces different physical effects, all abused substances have one thing in common. They hijack the brain's normal "reward" pathways and alter the areas of the brain responsible for self-control, judgment, emotional regulation, motivation, memory, and learning.
Whether you're addicted to cocaine, alcohol, heroin, Xanax, meth, or oxycontin, the effect on the brain is the same, when addiction sets in: an uncontrollable craving to use the drug that is so powerful that obtaining and taking the drug to get "High" becomes more important than anything else in life, including family, friends, employment, and even your own health and happiness.
Many people use drugs in order to escape physical and emotional discomfort. Maybe you started drinking to numb feelings of depression, smoking pot to deal with problems at home or school, using cocaine to raise your energy and confidence, taking sleeping pills to deal with panic attacks, or taking prescription painkillers to relieve a physical pain.
But while drugs might make you feel better in the short-term, attempts to self-medicate ultimately backfire. Instead of treating the underlying problem, drug use simply masks the symptoms. Take the drug away and the problem is still there, whether it be low self-esteem, anxiety, loneliness, or an unhappy family life. Furthermore, prolonged drug use eventually brings its own host of problems, including major disruptions to normal, daily functioning. Unfortunately, the psychological, physical, and social consequences of Addiction become far worse than the original problem you were trying to deal with.
One of the most dangerous effects of addiction is denial. The urge to use is so strong that the mind finds many ways to rationalize the drug use and addiction. You may drastically underestimate the quantity of drugs you're taking, how much it impacts your life, and the level of control you have over your drug use.
Denial is an unconscious defense mechanism. Minimizing and rationalizing the addiction is less harmless than admitting that your drug use is dangerously out of control, in the mind of an addict. But the price of denial can be extremely high.including the loss of important relationships, your job, financial security, and your physical and mental health.
If you're ready to admit you have a drug problem, congratulations! Recognizing that you have a problem is the first step on the road to recovery, one that takes tremendous courage and strength.
Facing your addiction without minimizing the problem or making excuses can feel frightening and overwhelming, but recovery is within reach. If you are ready to make a change and you are committed to seeking help, you can recover from your addiction and build a satisfying, drug-free life for yourself.
Don't try to go it alone; it's all too easy to get discouraged and rationalize "Getting High One More Time". Whether you choose to go to a drug rehab program, rely on self-help programs, counseling, support is essential. Recovering from addiction is much easier when you have people you can lean on for encouragement, comfort, and guidance.