Knowing that your child, spouse or any other loved one is struggling with drug addiction is one of the most devastating things anyone can face. If you are in this situation, you certainly know the strain it can cause to your relationships. You want to do what you can to help that person overcome the addiction but sometimes feel overwhelmed at the sheer magnitude of the situation.
If you yourself have battled addiction to drugs or alcohol, you know how difficult it is to stop. Even if you wanted to, you still find yourself drawn to these substances. No matter how derogatory or shameful the term “drug addict” is, the impulse to continue with the behavior is sometimes too powerful to resist.
Contrary to what has been traditionally believed, drug abuse is not just a social problem and drug addicts are not merely individuals who are too weak to say no when these are offered. Science has taken a lot of strides in making us understand what drug addiction is and has consequently shed light on the best way to treat those who are suffering from it.
Drug addiction is now considered a chronic brain disease that causes individuals to seek and use drugs even if they know that it is harmful not only to their physical well-being but to their work, finances and their relationships with others as well.
It is categorized as a disease because even if the initial decision to use drugs is voluntary, continued use eventually leads to structural and functional changes in the brain. As a result, a person’s self-control and capacity to make rational decisions are impaired.
Imaging technology has shown that drug addiction produces similar affects to heart disease as far as metabolism is concerned. When glucose uptake was measured in both a healthy brain and a healthy heart, an increase in metabolism was recorded.
In the brain of a cocaine-abuser and someone affected with heart disease, the metabolic activity was significantly diminished. These changes in the brain explain why it can be very difficult for a drug user to rely only on willpower alone to stop engaging in substance abuse.
These results showed that substance abuse is similar to other diseases. As such, it can be prevented and treated. If it is left untreated, the effects of drug addiction can cripple a person for life.
Advances in medical science have led to the discovery of treatments that help neutralize the powerful grip of addiction and enable a person to get back control.
There are now many different treatment approaches to substance abuse. One of the most successful modes of treatment is the combination of treatment medications with that of behavioral therapy. There are others that are customized to an individual’s situation. The objective of any treatment mode is to help the patient recover and eventually lead a drug-free life.
If you or a person close to you is already under the influence of drugs, it’s not too late to take action. There are drug rehabilitation programs that can help you lead a productive and happy life once again. All you need to do is acknowledge that there is a problem and seek help. Call us today and speak with a Recovery Specialist at 800-407-1114.