If you or a loved one are facing the effects and struggles associated with a substance abuse issue or another addiction issue, it can leave you wondering just what can be done about the matter and where help can be found. Even the possibility of such an issue existing in your life can leave you feeling helpless and at a loss for what to do.
As with anything relating to your physical and mental wellness or to that of a loved one, the first thing that you should look to do is educate yourself on the matter as much as possible.
Unfortunately, there is a great deal of misinformation about addiction and substance abuse out there that can cloud your judgment and only confuse you more. Furthermore, the way in which society views addiction can often be unsettling and disheartening. You might even feel reluctant to seek help in the first place out of the fear that you will be judged or cast aside by your friends and family because of your struggles.
The fact of the matter is, though, that help is out there. Factual, trustworthy information can be found from credible sources that can help you to overcome your addiction or help your loved one do so. Arming yourself with the right information is going to be the first step to coping with an addiction issue.
With that in mind, here are four facts about addiction that you should be aware of if you suspect that either you or someone that you care about is struggling with such an issue.
Not All Addiction is the Same
Because of how one type of addiction is often lumped together with all types of addiction, it is easy to conclude that all types are the same. However, the most important thing to learn right off the bat is that not all addiction is the same. Depending on everything from the manner in which a substance is used to what the substance actually is, the type of addiction that you are facing might be completely different from that of another person.
For instance, a cocaine addiction also referred to as a “coke” addiction, is quite different from alcohol addiction. Cocaine is an incredibly addictive substance that can hook a person who hasn’t even used the substance that often. This is because of the effects that cocaine has directly on the brain and on the production of certain hormones in the body.
On the other hand, alcohol can be linked more directly to a tolerance issue as well as the feeling that one associates with the substance. Understanding such differences in the various types of addiction can help you to better understand the struggles that you or a loved one are facing.
“Just Quitting” Usually isn’t an Option
By nature, addiction to a substance is a medical condition that has physical and mental symptoms and ramifications. For this reason, it is wrong to assume that the solution to a problem with addiction is to “just quit”.
In actual fact, there is usually a long process involved with overcoming addiction. This process can involve seeking professional help from a qualified healthcare provider. There are various treatment options available to help those struggling with addiction for a reason. It is because tackling the issue on your own or expecting someone else to do so will typically only lead to falling back into the pattern of addiction before too long.
A good rule of thumb is to consult your physician or another healthcare provider if you suspect that you or a loved one is struggling with some kind of addiction.
Relapse is Common
Another incorrect assumption that many people make in regard to addiction is that relapses should never happen and that when they do, it is a sign of failure. The fact of the matter is that relapse is often a part of the road to recovery. Many people who struggle with addiction will face a relapse of some kind throughout their journey.
The better you are able to understand and grasp this concept, the better you will be able to approach and recover from a relapse should one occur. Falling into a pattern of thought that you should simply give up because you have relapsed is a dangerous road to go down. Bear in mind that many who face addiction relapse along the way and that your relapse can actually serve as a positive learning experience in the long run.
There is No One-Size-Fits-All Solution
Even though addiction and substance abuse was once not viewed with the level of respect that it deserves both from society and the medical community, the world has now arrived at a place where resources are becoming more readily available, and those who suffer from addiction are being viewed with more kindness and empathy. That being said, it is important to bear in mind the fact that among all of the resources and treatment options out there, you won’t find a one-size-fits-all solution.
The nature of addiction is such that it affects everything from your mental health to your physical wellbeing. Furthermore, your addiction’s reasons and causes might be entirely unique to your situation. Because of this, the best approach that you can take to the issue at hand is one that is personalized to your particular situation.
It might even take you some time to find the right physician or treatment center for you. It is important that you are comfortable with your surroundings as you look to break free from your addiction and that you trust those offering you treatment and resources implicitly. If you aren’t confident in what you are doing at this time to fight your addiction, you should change things up and find the solution that is right for you.
Remember that recovery from addiction is a process, and that process can take longer for some than it does for others.