Addiction is a disease that can be hard for the addicted person to explain to their family. Some aspects of addiction are isolation, depression, and denial that the dependency exists in the first place.
When a person comes forward to get help for their addiction, they are at their most raw and humble. They are ready to change, but they need the tools to improve, as well.
Addiction and substance abuse disorders still carry too much stigma. There are well-known facts about addiction that scientists agree on. For example, even Harvard says that addiction is a disease of the brain.
Here are three dangerous myths about addiction and recovery:
- “Addicts are bad people, and they don’t deserve to get help.” Of course, addicted people aren’t bad people, but they are sick, can do “bad” or illegal things, and need help. Many people who end up in court for minor infractions such as petty theft have a substance use disorder. Many people addicted to drugs don’t see a way out of their predicament. Unfortunately, these people may do desperate things to continue to stay high, and continue to use despite negative consequences.
- An addicted person chooses to stay addicted. At any given time, a person who isn’t savvy about the facts surrounding addiction and recovery will claim that addiction is a choice. This belief is just one thing that can prevent addicted people from getting help. Addiction prevents people from making healthy decisions, like ceasing use of a drug. (People try to make that choice every day! But often they can’t live up to it and too ashamed to ask for help.)
- People get addicted to just one thing. This myth is a common misconception. It’s easy to believe that a person addicted to Oxycontin can still have an alcoholic drink now and then, but this isn’t the case. Many people abuse more than one substance, sometimes more than one at a time. Cessation of all alcohol and drug use is considered important in recovery. If a person continues to use mood-altering substances, they probably will end up trading one addiction for another.
Addiction is a disease, and there’s nothing to be ashamed of if you or somebody you love has been affected by it. To get free from a substance use disorder’s grip, you must quit using and start the road to recovery. Building a support network and creating new habits is essential to sustaining your life in recovery. To learn more about your disorder and ways to cope with urges to use, you may want to start a program at an inpatient or outpatient treatment center.
Detox is usually the first step people take when starting their recovery journey. Being in a safe place that also offers a therapeutic environment can make all the difference. Call us today to learn about your options: 1-888-959-3277.