Did You Think These Myths About Drug Addiction Were True or False?
As pervasive as addiction is in the population (reliable drug addiction statistics quote the figure of 23.5 million in the U.S.), it is very poorly understood, often, even by those who suffer from it. The pervasiveness of myths about drug addiction gets in the way of those who attempt to climb out of addiction or to help a loved one.
What follows are explanations about three different areas of damaging mythology that often make it harder for people to fight their addictions.
To remain addicted is a matter of weakness and indiscipline
Certainly, many people who become addicted to a drug manage to quit on their own with no professional intervention from rehabs — they manage to use their willpower, an innate sense of discipline, and to stop using. This isn’t to be taken to mean that addiction can always be addressed with personal resolve, however. It is undeniable that addiction is a mental disorder; the DSM V recognizes it as such. To significant numbers of those who are addicted, personal resolve is ineffective. It takes a sustained and well-planned medical, psychiatric and psychological treatment approach to make a difference.
The best drug rehabs include treatments in each one of these areas in their treatment programs. They offer medical treatment in detox to suppress withdrawal symptoms, and afterwards, to help with cravings, psychiatric treatment as part of a dual diagnosis approach, and counseling, behavioral therapy and other forms of intervention in rehab therapy. Each one of these approaches is an important part of an evidence-based approach to leaving addiction behind. It’s important to understand these methods would not exist if personal resolve were to be adequate.
People only accept rehab once they hit rock-bottom
The rock-bottom myth is an enduring one. When families are at their wits’ end trying to get a loved one to agree to quitting, they hear about the notion that addicts only ever come around to understanding the reality of their addiction when they end up so seriously hurt as a result, the they have no choice but to see the truth. While overdosing, getting into an accident, getting arrested, losing one’s job or marriage, or other such unfavorable occurrences certainly are able to change the mind, however, it isn’t a good idea to wait until these things happen.
Not only can it seriously complicate the addict’s life (or cause death) to wait around, wasting time in this way can give an addiction a chance to deeply establish itself. The longer an addiction is allowed to exist, the harder it becomes to escape it.
The best way to help an addicted person understand their need to quit is to stage a professionally managed intervention. It’s possible to contact a good rehab, ask for a professional interventionist, and have them carefully manage such an effort. Nine out of ten times, such efforts do result in a reasonable acceptance, and a cooperative attitude.
Rehabs can cure addiction with a short treatment course
According to the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration, addiction is a disorder that comes with no definitive cure. There are many medically valid types of addiction treatment available, but these need to be regularly delivered over extended periods of time. Relapses are common when treatment is withdrawn.
It’s important to see addiction as a mental disorder. Depression, bipolar or OCD, which are other common mental disorders, are known to strike at any point in the patient’s life even once treatment appears to make a difference; sometimes, this can happen without explanation, and after years of apparent health. Addiction is no different; it can return in the form of cravings. Conscientiously performed therapeutic intervention, and applying the lessons learned to one’s life, are important to lasting sobriety. Keeping in regular touch with relapse prevention therapy to help keep the mind focused on a life of sobriety, is important, as well.
Learning about these myths about drug addiction is an important step to finding an approach to escaping a sensible approach to escaping this condition. The more you familiarize yourself with a modern, scientifically valid understanding of what addiction is, the more likely you are of gaining an upper hand.
If you or a loved one needs help with abuse and/or treatment, please call the WhiteSands Treatment at (877) 855-3470. Our addiction specialists can assess your recovery needs and help you get the addiction treatment that provides the best chance for your long-term recovery.