Drug Abuse and Addiction – WhiteSands Treatment

Drug Abuse and Addiction - WhiteSands Treatment

Some addicts are confused as to how and why they became a drug addict while others use drugs as a coping mechanism in order to cover up negative past experiences. While many individuals believe that one can simply stop using one day if they had enough willpower, this simply isn’t the case. Addiction is classified as a mental disease and just as other brains and bodily diseases require treatment in order to overcome, so does addiction.

Drug use has the capacity to alter the chemical makeup of the brain, hindering the individual’s perception and ability to have a sound train of thought. In turn, it makes it difficult for them to accept that they require help for their addiction. Luckily there are proven addiction treatments that can help addicts recover from drug abuse so that they can carry on living meaningful and content lives.

Long-term drug abuse can affect a person in many areas such as:

  • Memory
  • Judgment
  • Learning
  • Decision making
  • Behavior

Addiction is an extremely compulsive chronic disease that has inherently harmful repercussions. Many of the most addictive drugs available act on the reward circuit of the brain, flooding it with dopamine which gives the user a sensation of pleasure and happiness. This is what is called a ‘high’. Over time and with prolonged drug use, the brain adapts to the constant flow of dopamine and requires that high amount in order to simply feel ‘normal’. In turn, when the user is not high, dopamine levels are so low that the individual becomes depressed, irritable, and agitated until they can get high again and bring those dopamine levels up.

Drug use typically begins with a voluntary decision to try a certain drug or alcoholic beverage. This could be by virtue of peer pressure or simply choosing to use drugs in hopes that it will make one fit in a social crowd. That use can quickly turn into abuse when the individual starts craving the substance more and more often until their body and their mind become dependent on it. Once an individual is reliant on a substance in order to make it through the day, they are addicted.

Drug addiction is considered a ‘relapsing disease’. This is because drug abuse can change the brain permanently, causing the person to always crave that drug that they were so heavily reliant on. Even if one has not used in years, they are still susceptible to falling back into the stronghold of addiction.

Addiction is by no means your fault. If you or someone you know is going through addiction and is ready to seek help, contact WhiteSands Treatment today to discuss treatment options.

What is Addiction?

Addiction is a complex brain disease that alters the functioning of the brain’s reward and motivation systems. It encompasses alcohol and drug abuse, which can be accompanied by behavioral problems such as eating and gambling disorders


Signs of Addiction

Recognizing substance addiction in you or in a loved one can help determine whether intervention needs to take place. Addiction isn’t something that happens overnight, but rather is a progressive disease that may take years to notice.


Understanding Addiction

Addiction is a disease that overtakes the mind and alters its ability to ration and operate normally. The disease of addiction works by altering the way the brain registers pleasure, corrupting it, and convincing it that it needs the desired substance in order to function properly.


A to Z Addiction Substances

There are a plethora of addictive substances on the market. From readily available and legal alcohol to prescription painkillers and illicit drugs; people can get addicted to anything.


Dealing With Addiction

Addiction does not magically appear overnight, but rather, is a gradual endeavor that takes years to get to. Dealing with addiction is not enviable as you become a slave to your substance dependency; it controls you.


Alcohol Addiction

Alcohol treatment is becoming increasingly more common as many people are beginning to recognize the severity of the disease. Over time, enjoying alcohol develops into a need to drink alcohol on any occasion that permits it. This turns into addiction.


Opioid Addiction

Addiction to opiates, opioids, and narcotics are at epidemic levels. Opiates cover a large amount of legal opiates including morphine, codeine, and OxyCodone. Those who are hooked on opiates often don’t use them as prescribed, abusing them and essentially becoming addicted.


Cocaine Addiction

Cocaine is a powerful stimulant, derived from the leaves of a native South American plant, Coca and works by boosting the dopamine neurotransmitters in the brain. Cocaine is a very addictive drug and is at high risk for dependency, especially in those who have a particularly addiction nature.


Heroin Addiction

Heroin is an illegal drug that is made from the popular painkiller, morphine. Morphine is naturally derived from the seed pod of a select strand of poppy plants and is used as a pain reliever.


Methamphetamine Addiction

Users can snort, inject, ingest, or inhale meth and often repeat the process multiple times in a short period because the results don’t last very long. Meth can destroy your body and your mind, leaving behind lasting effects that will haunt you for years to come.


Crack Addiction

It isn’t easy to get crack out of your system. Because of the withdrawal symptoms, it’s important to find a medically-assisted detox with board-certified professionals overseeing the process.


MDMA Addiction

MDMA, short methylenedioxymethamphetamine, is a synthetic drug and is part of a family of drugs that act as stimulants and hallucinogens. MDMA can pose an extreme danger as many times it is cut or ‘laced’ with harmful additives such as cocaine, cough medicine, or bath salts.


LSD Addiction

LSD, short for lysergic acid diethylamide and more commonly referred to as acid, is a hallucinogen and psychedelic drug. LSD is the most potent hallucinogen on the market and can cause a dangerous trip especially in those who are paranoid.


Inhalants Addiction

Inhalants consist of a multitude of substances or products that can be breathed and ‘inhaled’ in, hence their name. Inhalants pose a unique danger to youth as they can easily access household inhalants by simply opening up their kitchen cabinet.


Polysubstance Addiction

One who uses more than a single illicit substance in order to get them ‘high’ is considered to have a polysubstance addiction. Those who have this dependency will take more than one type of drug over a 12-month time span.


Behavior Addiction

Behavioral addictions such as gambling and eating disorders often stem from underlying emotional issues; often, this is associated with dual diagnosis. Having an addictive personality or a history of compulsion in one’s family also plays a significant role.