Understanding Drug Addiction

A Guide to Understanding Drug Addiction

Drug addiction may be one of the most confusing and frustrating diseases. It is hard to imagine why anyone would continue to use drugs and alcohol as their entire life is falling apart.  Understanding drug addiction is not simple because it often defies logic. Watching someone face consequences like the loss of family, arrest, financial ruin, and more while continuing to use drugs is heartbreaking. The key to it all is to know that the one who is active in their addiction is not in their right mind. Fortunately, this begins to change as they get sober, and then it’s time to rebuild.  That’s why The Last House is here; we’re here to help those coming back from addiction create a sober life. 

What Is Addiction?

Addiction is defined as a chronic, relapsing disorder characterized by compulsive drug or alcohol use despite any adverse consequences.  Drug and alcohol use typically begins with experimentation or first use. While we often think of this in terms of illicit drugs, the drugs may be legal. A person may be prescribed opioids for long-term pain or may begin using alcohol. The user may stop there or may move on to regular use. The danger begins when the use continues, becomes riskier, and leads to dependence. If you find yourself drinking while drunk or high, you’re engaging in more dangerous use. If you find you cannot stop or taper down without experiencing withdrawal symptoms, you have crossed over to physical dependence on the substances you have been using. Not everyone who uses or experiments with drugs and alcohol will become addicted. Researchers do not entirely understand why, and this is why understanding addiction is so complicated. 

What Is the Best Way to Treat Addiction?

Treating your addiction depends on multiple factors. The drugs you have been using, how you have ingested them, and your use history will significantly impact treatment decisions. Treatment is about more than the drugs, though, because the drugs are typically used to cope when poor coping skills exist. Maybe you turned to drugs as a way to self-medicate your anxiety disorder or because you couldn’t cope with past trauma. Perhaps you found drugs as a way to self-medicate your depression or because you grew up in a family where someone normalized drug use. All of these circumstances will be taken into account as you seek treatment for your addiction.  Researchers continue to explore the effectiveness of different treatments and find that twelve-step mutual aid recovery groups and recovery housing are both very effective. 

Can Addiction Ever Be Cured?

While it can never truly be cured, addiction can be managed quite well. The United States Surgeon General reports that approximately fifty percent of adults who once suffered from substance use disorder are considered in stable remission. This represents about twenty-five million people, once active in their addictions, who have now been sober for more than a year. That’s good news for those early in sobriety; recovery is possible. However, recovery is a lifelong endeavor.  Addiction, like many other diseases, requires ongoing care and attention for remission to continue. 

Reach Out to the Last House Today for More Information About Drug Addiction

The Last House Sober Living is a network of sober living homes in the heart of West Los Angeles. We believe in providing our clients with the tools to have a meaningful life and participate in their own sobriety.  Activities such as service commitments, sober parties, conventions, dances, and house outings are all a part of helping you learn how to have fun in sobriety.  If you’re wondering where to start to create your sober life, The Last House is here to help. 

Tags: No tags

Comments are closed.