Addiction is a mental disorder that drives people to compulsively abuse substances and engage in harmful behaviors. Addiction disorder tears families and friends apart, destroys financial well-being, wrecks careers, and causes deep shame, while robbing addicts of their health and well-being.
Statistical Facts about Drugs and Alcohol Addiction Disorder
Addicts often feel alone and hopeless. They’re far from alone. According to the Association of American Medical Colleges, 21 million Americans report having at least one addiction, and far more live in denial. The Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration tells us that only 10% of people who admit they have a problem go on to get treatment for it. The National Institute on Drug Abuse reports addiction costs the United States economy more than $600 billion annually.
Since the 1990s, the CDC reports that drug and alcohol overdose deaths have more than tripled. In 2017 alone, 24.2 million drivers were charged with DUI of alcohol or drugs. The WHO tells us that one in 20 deaths worldwide is caused by alcoholism. Addiction of any kind is a serious health issue that requires medical help.
The Path of Addiction
Addiction starts with a feeling of needing or craving a substance. This feeling can be triggered by a stressful event or trauma, but it can also come about from social habits. Feeding these cravings causes them to increase in intensity over time. Addiction sufferers eventually experience withdrawal symptoms, which are their body’s way of telling them it needs this substance to function normally.
Living with an addiction means it becomes increasingly more difficult to feel good or normal without being high or drunk, but drinking or partaking in drugs doesn’t make sufferers feel high or drunk anymore. It can become impossible to get high or drunk enough to feel good.
People suffering from alcoholism or drug addiction don’t feel good when drugs or alcohol are in their system, but they feel even worse when they’re sober. This is when addiction spirals out of control and people accidentally overdose in an attempt to maintain homeostasis.
Getting clean and sober never happens for some people. Their addiction is too strong, peers enable their addictive and self-destructive behaviors, and alcohol and drugs eventually take their life. Others get lucky, hit rock bottom, and reach out for help.
Signs of Alcoholism and Drug Addiction
The American Psychiatric Association defines alcohol abuse disorder in the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM-5). These signs are similar to those suffering from drug addiction. If you or someone you love experiences two or more of these symptoms in a 12-month period, contact us for information about how we can help you.
- Drinking or getting high more than intended for longer than intended.
- Trying and failing to cut back on drinking or drug use.
- Strong urges to drink or get high.
- Blowing off work, school, friends, or family to get drunk or high.
- Drug or alcohol use is causing disagreements and problems with loved ones and friends.
- Prioritizing getting drunk or high over important responsibilities or activities.
- Drugs are alcohol use is putting you or someone you love in physically dangerous situations.
- Drugs and/or alcohol use is causing health problems, including the exacerbation of mental health disorders like depression or delusional disorders.
- Tolerance to alcohol or drugs is increasing.
- Experiencing withdrawal symptoms when sober.
Withdrawal symptoms vary by the substances abused but can include vomiting, diarrhea, hot and cold flashes, sweating, shaking, muscle soreness, bone pain, muscle twitches, restless leg syndrome, seizures, exhaustion, obsessive thoughts about drugs or alcohol, mood swings, intense physical and mental cravings, uncontrollable crying, shame, paranoia, irregular or fast heartbeat, and even death. Withdrawing from drugs or alcohol is dangerous and should be done in a medically supervised environment.
The Process of Getting Help
Reaching out for help is a huge step, and when a person does this, they need to be met with support from experienced healthcare professionals. Addiction sufferers dread detoxification. The drug and alcohol rehabilitation specialists at Topsail Addiction Treatment understand and empathize with those who are brave and strong enough to ask for help.
Topsail understands that exercising helps release hormones that help our patients rewire the reward centers of their brains and start to feel better again. Our psychological support and counseling can help patients beat the mental game of getting sober, which is the hardest part long-term.
If you or someone you know is suffering from addiction to drugs or alcohol, know that there’s no shame in getting help. The rehabilitation treatment specialists at Topsail’s rehab center are here to serve residents of Framingham, MA. We’re here to help, and we want addiction sufferers to know that we’re so proud of you for taking this difficult step. Contact us today to have a no-obligation discussion about treatment.