Misinformation about how addiction works, how it is treated, and the challenges that can arise due to addiction not only impact those trying to help, those who live with or work with an addict, but they affect the addict as well! After all, being in the process of addiction doesn’t mean an addict really understands consciously what’s happening, or why.
One prevalent myth is that addicts are few and far between. An addict will typically feel isolated and alone, and may entertain self-shaming thoughts that further separate her from the community. The truth is that one in four American families is dealing with an active addiction. No one should feel alone, cast out, or ashamed of wanting to seek help.
Another story we tell ourselves is that addiction is merely mind over matter. Given the appropriate willpower, an addict would surely stop their bad behavior, become less selfish and take better care of himself or his family. Not only do these judgmental characterizations come from the outside world, they tend to come from inside the addict at the same time. The consequences of negative self-image, blame and judgement are not positive, and do not lead to a recovery. The truth is that addiction has multiple factors. Some believe the physical factors, like genetics inherited from family, are more important than any others. However, studies have shown that the environment an addict experiences can add to the risk of addiction. Also, certain key developmental stages can be interrupted by addiction, which then takes hold. In other words, it’s very hard to tell who is going to become an addict, and there is no one formula that applies to everyone. However, in no case is beating addiction a simple matter of willpower.
Finally, there seems to be a societal focus on the evils of illegal substances. However, there is such widespread abuse of prescription drugs that the National Institute on Drug Abuse reported that as many as 1 in 12 high school students reported recreational use of Vicodin in 2010. The myth that a prescription is a license to take a drug, and that no harm can come to someone using a prescription drug is very dangerous, along with exposing young and old people alike to unintended consequences of prescription drug abuse and addiction.
When involved with an addict in the family or circle of friends, it is important to be aware of the concepts about addiction. The best defense against misinformation is an awareness of research in the field of addiction.
Distributed by Client Initiative
Company Name: Hill Alcohol and Drug Treatment
Contact Person: Charles
Address:41877 Enterprise Circle North, Suite 100
Country: United States