Obstacles that Can Lead to Relapse
About Drug and Alcohol Addiction
Millions of Americans suffer from dependency and addiction to drugs and alcohol, and the numbers continue to increase. According to the National Institute on Drug Abuse, In 2012, approximately 23.9 million people in America, 12 years of age and older, had used an illegal drug or abused a psychotherapeutic medication , such as a pain reliever or stimulant, in the past month. This is an 8.3 percent increase from a decade ago.
With the increase of sales from prescription painkillers and the downfall of the American economy, more people are addicted to drugs. Drug or alcohol addiction is a chronic disease that can cause a person to act in ways that are harmful to themselves and to the people around them. Both drug and alcohol addiction can lead to organ failure and result in fatalities, and both addictions can lead to person pulling away from loved ones, losing their job, losing their money and committing criminal acts.
Due to all of the negative consequences that stem from drug and alcohol addiction, at some point most people realize they need to stop, but stopping can be extremely hard for a person to accomplish. Due to the withdrawal symptoms and the control that addiction has on a person’s brain, many people need help in overcoming their addiction. However, even with help, overcoming an addiction will have obstacles that a person must conquer.
Obstacles that Every Recovering Addict Must Overcome
According to the National Institute on Drug Abuse, many people do not understand drug or alcohol addiction, and it is often mistakenly assumed that people who abuse drugs lack moral principles or willpower. The reality is that drug addiction is a complex illness, and stopping drug use takes more than strong will and good intentions.
When a person develops an addiction to drugs. Their brain will change in ways that will cause them to feel a compulsive need to use drugs, this makes overcoming a drug addiction extremely difficult.
When a person decides to stop using drugs or alcohol, there are three obstacles that they must overcome:
1. They must get through the physical withdrawals. The physical withdrawals from drug or alcohol addiction can be painful and exhausting. Most people fear going through them, but the physical withdrawal symptoms typically do not exceed a week’s time.
2. They must deal with emotional issues. Along with physical withdrawals there is also psychological withdrawals that a person must learn to manage. In addition, drug and alcohol addiction can alter a person’s brain chemicals, which may take time to heal, and that may cause a person emotional turmoil. A person should discuss their feelings to a therapist and deal with any emotional baggage they are carrying.
3. They must find the strength to stay away from drugs or alcohol once they leave a treatment program, and for the rest of their life. Support groups and therapy commonly help a person to stay strong.