The Mind of an Addict

The mind of an addict is an interwoven mass of guilt, pleasure, depression, denial and fear.  No one starts using drugs or alcohol in the hopes of becoming an addict; most believe that they can control the amount they use. Scientists believe that some of us are wired for a more addictive personality than others, whether this is true or not has been hotly debated for decades.  The one thing that is true is that addiction to prescription medications, alcohol and illegal drugs continues to increase, causing harm to the addict, and their loved ones.  Unfortunately over 30% of our population believes (2008 report by the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration) that overcoming addiction is just a matter of willpower.  Anyone that has been around an addict, works with recovering addicts, and addicts themselves, know it requires more than willpower alone.

New Found Life 

“Cold-turkey” and “just gut it out” our terms that individuals without any knowledge of addiction and recovery throw around.  In truth, addicts need structure, therapy, counseling, support, and willpower.  Few addicts are successful in the long-term of beating an addiction on their own.  Rehabilitation centers, recognize the need for a multi-disciplinary approach to both recovery and the maintenance of sobriety.  Through true gender-specific programs, recovering addicts find the support they need to delve into the cause of their addiction while developing effective relapse prevention strategies.  Relapse prevention should be, and is an essential part of any addiction recovery program.

Recovering from Addiction

While some individuals present addictive tendencies, people from all walks of life can fall prey to any addiction whether it be to food, alcohol, prescription medications, illegal drug addiction, gambling, sex., or even exercise addiction!  Recovering from the addiction takes time, patience, perseverance, understanding, and structure – both from the addict, and those that support them.  Through one-on-one counseling, recovering addicts explore their pasts to find the links that lead them to start using and abusing their drug of choice.  It is through this thoughtful and honest examination that true recovery begins.  Without this step, just discipline and willpower will inevitably fail.  An addict’s mind is wrapped tightly around the need to feel better, forget the past, experience euphoria, or just escape.  This does not stop when the abuse stops.

How to Combat and Reverse Addiction?

For some individuals, addiction may be fueled by past physical traumas or emotional traumas that have not yet been given the attention they need to heal.  PTSD is one of the common causes of addiction and can come from traumatic events witnessed, or realized.  Learning to manage, identify, and process fear, grief and guilt is essential for anyone wanting to overcome an addiction.  The next part of the puzzle is the preparation to reintegrate into life.  This is often the greatest fear that many recovering addicts face.  Depending on the length of their addiction, and the amount of damage that it caused to their professional and personal lives, they may need academic, career and financial counseling to prepare them for what lies ahead.

Final Considerations

The mind of the addict is complicated, and there is no one right protocol for long-term recovery.  However, a total mind, body and spirit rehabilitation is often what is required.  Each individual that fights an addiction has different needs to start living a sober life.  Compare Rehabilitation Centers and find one that is the right match for you and your particular symptoms.

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