A person can become addicted to just about anything. This is because the physiological cause and effect are the same regardless of the stimulus. Addiction is a physical, chemical, psychological, and medical condition. It hijacks the brain and controls the person’s life. It’s not a weakness of character; it is a disease. Fortunately, like many other diseases, addiction is treatable.
Having an addiction is not a character defect. Understanding the physicality and complexity of addiction can be the first step to recovery for both the afflicted person and their family. Another initial step is to have the patient evaluated by a credentialed and licensed professional, as is done with a person with any other serious disease. Evaluations at A New Hope Recovery are done by an accredited and licensed therapist.
Behavioral and Substance Addictions
When most people think of addiction, they think of addiction to drugs or alcohol. This kind of addiction is known as substance use disorder (SUD). However, it is not the only kind of addiction.
Behavioral addictions are also serious forms of addiction. Fortunately, behavioral addictions are treatable as well. Some examples of behavioral addictions include addictions to gambling, shopping, gaming, television, sex, and the internet.
In any addiction, regardless of its substance or behavior of choice, the neurological reward system is affected. In the brain, the equation is the same: participate in the behavior/use the substance → releases dopamine = pleasure.
The brain has been compared to a computer numerous times. It doesn’t know or care whether the person’s addiction is good or bad for them. Does a computer care what programs are downloaded? This explains how someone can become addicted to a good thing.
Any Addiction Is Treatable
Other factors are also at play when a person is addicted to a behavior or substance. For example, many addictions are maladaptive responses to peer pressure, trauma, or mental health catalysts such as depression. Considering these influences is important because the whole person will need to be treated, not just their disease.
Just as with other illnesses, addiction is treatable. Also, as with any serious illness, it’s best to enlist the services of a professional. A crucial part of any addiction treatment is therapy. Treatment facilities are staffed with excellent therapists and counselors. Only when the person stops their addictive behavior can they uncover the reason why they use.
All Addictions Can Become Life-Threatening
Addictions can quickly degrade into life-threatening situations. Even behavioral addictions carry this danger. For example, a gambling or shopping addiction can lead to financial ruin. Then the person can sink into an intolerable depression and consider taking drastic actions.
A treatment facility is one of the best methods for treatment. However, many who struggle with addiction are resistant to getting any type of help. This isn’t because they’re stubborn. It’s because their brains are still being affected by the disease of addiction. Often, people who are addicted cannot seek treatment fully of their own volition. They need their friends and family to start the process for them.
A person who is addicted to anything loses the ability to think logically. When anyone questions them about their behavior, they become defensive and dismissive. It may not matter what is said because the person perceives any pressure to quit as an attack. The object of addiction, whether a substance or behavior, takes precedence over anything else. Addiction takes over their life completely. Everything else becomes a distraction and a nuisance, even family.
Ignoring every other aspect of one’s life in favor of their addiction is entirely self-destructive. The afflicted person can’t see this, but others can. The more anyone pleads with them to quit, the more they may dig their heels in and do the opposite. They’re not being spiteful; they’re being human. They have a disease.
Soon, the afflicted person feels more at home with people who share their addiction than in their own home. Submerging into their newfound addiction culture strengthens their resolve to continue using. They’re in an addiction haze, void of clarity of mind. How can anyone outside this tainted, altered reality understand it? They can’t without help from professionals.
An Intervention May Be the First Step
Addiction doesn’t create tunnel vision. It creates psychological blindness. Sometimes, the only way to reach your loved one is to hold an intervention. There are many components to an intervention. This is why it is vital to have a trained interventionist plan and facilitate it. An interventionist’s best tool is that they can remain objective.
A New Hope Recovery offers an evidence-based four-step process intervention. An intervention is not an attack on the impaired person. It is a loving, caring, and life-saving act. The interventionist will gather information about the patient and all attendees. The interventionist will also inquire about the family dynamics. When all interviews are complete, the interventionist can then design a personalized treatment plan.
Treating Addiction Reduces Stress
Addiction is stressful not only for the afflicted person but also for their family. The family is stressed, worrying about their loved one and trying to get them to quit. The impaired person exists in a constant state of anxiety. They agonize over the logistics and finances of getting their next dose or partaking in their destructive behavior.
A New Hope Recovery can alleviate much of this pressure by explaining how they can help. The first weight is lifted off by providing reassurance that addiction is treatable.
A New Hope Recovery believes that a person who struggles with addiction should always have hope. Addiction is treatable with professional help and support from family and friends. Our entire staff is accredited and licensed in their respective fields. Our interventionist is trained in all aspects of arranging and conducting interventions. Our care does not stop after the intervention is completed. We encourage and support the patient through recovery. Within 48 hours of your first call to us, we can mobilize and facilitate an intervention. With decades of experience, we know the steps to start the afflicted person on their path to health. Call us at (407) 501-8490 to learn how we can help.