Addiction Misconceptions As Explained by Costa Mesa Drug Rehab
Addiction is a chronic illness that causes someone to continue to consume or use a substance even though there are adverse psychological and physical effects. It can cause a lack of concern for consequences and compulsive or obsessive behavior to obtain and use that substance. Those that become addicted to a substance will do everything in their power to get it. Addiction is considered a mental illness and complex brain disorder , and the impact of ongoing substance use is long-lasting. Although addiction has been studied, researched, and has proven to be something that can be treated, it is commonly misunderstood. Clear Life Recovery, the leading Costa Mesa Drug Rehab, has helped hundreds of those struggling with addiction and substance abuse understand their addiction and get the help they need to move forward.
To understand addiction, it is essential to understand to be able to differentiate between myth and truth. Common misconceptions surrounding addiction is a part of how addiction is viewed and perceived.
Myth #1 Addiction is a Habit
One common misconception that most believe is that addiction is really just a habit and not an illness. In fact, having a habit and chronic illness, such as addiction, are two very different things.
A habit is something that you occasionally partake in, such as having a glass of wine after a long day. You’re aware of its effects on your mood, but you don’t overindulge every night after work. But addiction falls into the category of chronic illness because it’s far more involved than just a habit.
A chronic illness is considered to be something that lasts longer than two months. Addiction occurs due to the brain and the body’s need to have a particular substance, and it typically will begin long before two months of use. Like other chronic illnesses, addiction disrupts the areas of the brain that control memory, learning, motivation, and reward.
Making the difference between a habit and addiction can help you through recovery. The significant traits of addiction include:
- Direct or indirect negative impact on your life – caused by your behavior
- Allowing yourself to be in risky situations
- Withdrawal symptoms, such as shakiness, stress, anxiety, and loss of sleep
- Hiding your substance use from friends or family
- Inability to stop consuming or using on your own
Once substance abuse shows these traits, it is more than just a habit. It has grown into a chronic illness that controls all aspects of the user’s life. When substance abuse is not treated, it can have prolonged effects on the brain’s chemistry and cause physical damage.
Myth #2 Addiction is “Rock Bottom”
Those that struggle with addiction sometimes subscribe to the line of thought that they are not truly an addict because they haven’t reached “rock bottom.” Many people believe that you seek help for addiction only when you’ve lost everything – your job, your family, and all of your money. This perception has been pushed by those in specific programs that cause you to believe that you are at your “rock bottom.”
This is not always the case when it comes to addiction. Someone who can maintain a job and family relationship can still suffer from addiction. Some people struggling with addiction can even carry on and live a “normal” life from the outsider perspective while they are struggling mentally and physically with addiction. Many people suffering from addiction appear to be highly functional, and some may not even notice an addictive behavior until it spirals more out of control.
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Surprisingly this is still a misconception about addiction. Like other chronic illnesses, such as cancer, diabetes, or cardiovascular issues, addiction is not a choice. While addicts do voluntarily use or consume drugs or alcohol, the effect and reasoning occur through a strong chemical reaction in the brain. It creates a need or craving. When someone uses a substance more frequently, the brain develops a physiological need to use or consume that substance.
It is not a choice but is the result of substantial changes in the brain’s chemistry. An addict’s mind is now rewired by this change to need to consume that substance even if they harm themselves or someone else in the process. Addiction changes the brain and brain chemistry in at least four ways, including:
- Homeostasis which is the brain’s natural balance
- Amount and type of chemicals released into the brain
- Effective communication patterns in the brain
- Altered brain structures and functioning
Due to these changes in the brain, the substance use no longer becomes a choice to the addict. It becomes a need that they must fulfill the same as breathing. Our team at Clear Life Recovery ranked among the best in Costa Mesa Drug Rehab. We work with you one-to-one to effectively rewire your brain chemistry to eliminate the need for these substances. Through personalized treatment methods, you’ll be able to get back on to living your life.
Treatment with Clear Life Recovery, Costa Mesa Drug Rehab
If you or someone you love is struggling with addiction, Clear Life Recovery can help. Our effective treatment programs have made us known as one of the best Costa Mesa Drug Rehab clinics. We have a passion for helping get you on the road you want to be on. Through personalized treatment programs, we can help guide you through recovery. Our team of professionals is here to talk with you and get you started on your recovery program. Contact us today to see how we can help.
. National Institute on Drug Abuse. “The Science of Drug Use and Addiction: The Basics,” https://www.samhsa.gov/data/report/2017-nsduh-annual-national-report
. Cascade Mental Health. “The Biological Causes of Drug Addiction,” https://www.cascadementalhealth.org/poc/view_doc.php?type=doc&id=58685&cn=1409