With a stigma on drug addiction, it has become more difficult to explain how addiction is not a choice but rather an actual disease. Taking a look at what a drug addiction is defined as and why drug addiction can happen are important components for breaking the stigma of addiction. Getting an accurate understanding of the disease also helps to further educate the public, which ultimately assists in preventing drug use and drug addiction.
Understanding Drug Addiction
Drug addiction is defined as “a primary, chronic disease of brain reward, motivation, memory, and related circuitry,” according to American Society of Addiction Medicine (ASAM). Commonly, drug addiction is referred to as a vicious cycle of repetitive use with the inability to stop or stay stopped for long. While there are genetic factors that can increase the likelihood of an addiction, the disease could happen to anybody regardless of their age, gender, race, or creed. Addiction is an illness that does not discriminate. It’s important to remember this because the reality is that nobody is immune to the disease of addiction.
But what makes an individual become addicted to drugs? Aside from how genetic factors can increase the risk of addiction, environmental factors, depression and mental health issues, as well as repetitive drug use can make an individual more susceptible to addiction. Drug users typically seek out substances to self-medicate, which can make these individuals with family problems and mental illnesses more likely to use habitually, which can easily become a drug addiction. By addressing personal, family, and mental health issues early on with coping skills in place of drug use, like counseling, cognitive behavioral therapy, family therapy, and behavioral activation, these risk factors for drug addiction could potentially be reduced.
Preventative Measures for Drug Abuse & Drug Addiction
Education is key when it comes to preventative measures for drug use and drug addiction. Providing information early on for children and teens in an appropriate manner about the dangers of drug use can be effective. Early education on the disease of addiction also has potential to help individuals learn about what to do and look out for in themselves and their loved ones. Different types of therapies can be effective for working on issues prior to any drug abuse as well as after and during drug use. Children, teens, and young adults should be encouraged to engage in hobbies and interests instead of resorting to drug use for entertainment. It’s also important to learn healthy coping skills, like exercising, writing, singing, dancing, and playing sports, early on since the way that individuals react to problems at a young age can shape how they deal with issues later in their life.
Drug Treatment Options for Addicts
Becoming addicted to drugs and/or alcohol does not need to be a life sentence. There are treatment options available, including inpatient rehabilitation, partial hospitalization programs, intensive outpatient programs, and halfway houses for aftercare. Any drug addict has the ability to live a clean and sober life with the right treatment plan.
While there are several treatment options available, it may be difficult to decipher which drug treatment facility is effective, safe, and best for you or your loved one. The Watershed Addiction Treatment Programs is a reputable and effective drug treatment facility that has been dedicated to saving lives for 20 years! When you are in need of treatment for a drug and/or alcohol addiction, The Watershed is here to help you better than any other drug rehab can. With compassion and an understanding of the disease, the staff and team at The Watershed are committed to helping you get your life back. Call The Watershed for help today at 1-855-781-2699.Tags: Addiction Treatment, drug addiction, drug prevention, drug treatment