It goes without saying that drug addiction continues to be a problem in America, as opioid overdose rates are higher than ever before, and prescription drugs like Xanax and Adderall still find themselves being used non-medically. You’d think that, given the overdose rates behind opiates and heroin, the dangers with using sedatives like Xanax, and the potential for psychological damage behind Adderall, the people using drugs like this would just stop or seek treatment for drug addiction.
But they can’t. That’s the definition of addiction, and the underlying point behind all their struggle. Addictions are hard to break, and if anyone could do it alone, then everyone would do it. But they don’t.
Modern-day drug addiction treatment is far from perfect, but there are plenty of treatment options to fit every kind and form of addiction, and we’re closer than ever to understanding what a successful rehabilitation looks like, and why treatment for drug addiction is so hard – as well as how we could work to treat it more quickly. But the main point is this: there are plenty of options for treatment for drug addiction, as well as treatment for drug addiction including therapies and methods that can successfully help you get into long-term sobriety.
However, the road to said sobriety will be a little rocky. And that is where the misconception around treatment for drug addiction comes from. Just because many people relapse during treatment does not mean it doesn’t work – relapses are not failures, but episodes that are a part of the treatment process. Addiction, as we have learned, is more of a chronic condition than an acute issue. The changes in the brain formed by physical dependence on a drug are hard to reverse, and require years of abstinence and healthy living to undo. Until then, the risk of relapse exists, and any unexpected and severe stressor can bring people dangerously close to the brink, or push them over the edge.
Addiction treatment doesn’t make all that go away, but it massively helps people cope with living with their addictions, in such a way that they can successfully deny themselves their addiction and continue living peacefully without it.
It’s a long, arduous process – but it’s much harder without treatment. Despite the revelations and successes in recent research, most people struggling with substance misuse still do not seek treatment. Here’s why it’s important to reverse that behavior, and get help today.
Treatment For Drug Addiction Is Not Extraordinarily Expensive
Drug addiction treatment isn’t always about going to an expensive rehab or spending hundreds of dollars an hour with a therapist in an upper-class neighborhood. There are plenty of resources and options for people struggling with drug addictions in poorer economic conditions – which is where most people with drug addiction find themselves.
Like many other things, addiction is a vicious cycle: it grows most rapidly and effectively in places of emotional turmoil, depression and anger, and continues to both produce and feed off those feelings. The stress of living off a low income in a poor neighborhood with little potential for upwards mobility plays a role in the development of addiction. That does not mean that poverty is the only factor for addiction – it is one among many, including family history, genetics, trauma, peer pressure and others.
It’s no secret that healthcare is expensive, and that many of the people who need addiction treatment can’t afford certain kinds of treatment. But there are many other alternatives across the country that offer help to people struggling with addiction, getting them off the drugs and helping them stay off for good.
How Addiction Hijacks Your Brain
Some people may presume that drug use doesn’t have to turn into addiction. If you take a person’s life and take a certain period within which they survived a war against all odds, then you wouldn’t deem that person immortal. Everyone dies, eventually. In the same way, prolonged use of an addictive drug will eventually turn into addiction, so long as someone continues to use the drug.
Excepting very rare genetic circumstances, most people can only casually use a drug like cocaine for a certain amount of time before their body begins to crave it, then need it. Withdrawal symptoms kick in, and the physical dependence becomes apparent.
Even then, many refuse to see the signs, which is why denial is a common factor in the early months of addictive behavior. And after a while, when the truth is impossible to deny, addiction becomes an emotional cycle of withdrawal, relapse and anger, sometimes leading to symptoms of depression and feelings of hopelessness.
You Could Do It Alone (But You Don’t Have To)
It’s not impossible to treat your own addiction. There have been documented cases of people going cold turkey, surviving the withdrawal process, and having the will to simply stay off the drugs for the rest of their days. In some cases, this sudden and very drastic cutoff leads to emotional damage, and anger issues.
In other cases, it’s basically a modern-day miracle. The truth is that most cases of addiction are resolved through the help of friends, loved ones and medical professionals. Addiction is a disease within your own mind – but with motivation, inspiration and trust from those around you, you can find the strength to fight against it long enough to live above it.