The topic of substance abuse inspires a lot of popular opinions — much of them misinformed. In part, that’s due to the way addiction and addiction treatment are portrayed in popular culture. Watch these depictions carefully, and you will be able to detect many addiction treatment myths.
The reality about addiction treatment is vastly different than what you see on TV and hear about in conversations around the water cooler. Addiction treatment is a hard process that requires significant commitments on behalf of individuals to rebuild their lives. It allows individuals with substance abuse problems to find a better way. Debunking alcohol treatment myths can help.
How Does Addiction Happen?
Someone doesn’t become addicted due to a “germ” or virus. Addiction is a chronic disease that comes on progressively, one drink and one pill at a time. You don’t realize when it’s happening.
Addiction also isn’t measured by quantity–by how much you drink or use drugs. The diagnosis of substance abuse relates to the impact of drugs or alcohol on your life. If it leads you to lose your job, to fight with your spouse, to get arrested, or worse — and yet you continue to use drugs or drink alcohol — you are showing signs of addiction.
4 Myths Surrounding Addiction Treatment
Drugs or alcohol trigger changes in brain chemistry, where your body becomes dependent on these substances to feel normal. It’s a physiological and psychological disorder that requires addiction treatment. Unfortunately, this disorder leads to addiction treatment myths. Here are four to watch out for:
- People choose to be addicted. This could be the worst of the addiction treatment myths. Years of research show that genetics, family environment, and brain chemistry are among the factors beyond the control of someone who is addicted.
- You can’t force somebody into treatment. While that’s partially true, nobody wants to go through addiction treatment. They do it, ultimately, because the law requires it or their family appeals to them to get help.
- If addiction treatment doesn’t work the first time, it will never work. Substance use disorders are forever. They can be treated. But they are never cured forever. Sometimes it takes several stays in treatment to get on the right path.
- There is only one “right” form of addiction treatment. Every individual has a different profile in addiction. The successful approaches to treatment are also varied. People struggling with substance abuse face enough challenges with their disease. Perpetuating addiction treatment myths does not help.
Supporting Yourself with Aftercare
Someone in recovery or who is receiving addiction treatment cannot control the distribution of addiction treatment myths. But they can develop skills in the aftercare stage that become immensely helpful in shaping reactions to those myths.
The aftercare stage of addiction treatment is aimed broadly at helping you cope with the stresses of society and living in sobriety. It initially consists of ongoing counseling sessions with a therapist, either one-on-one or in a group format.
Aftercare also typically includes attendance at 12-step peer support programs such as Alcoholics Anonymous or SMART Recovery. Peer support helps build fellowship and establish mentoring or sponsorship relationships to help each other through tough times. Aftercare helps teach skills for dealing with addiction treatment myths.
Getting Help for Addiction at Victory Bay Recovery Center
Addiction disrupts lives, creating problems for your health, family, and career. Addiction treatment is a potential way out. Let the staff at Victory Bay Recovery Center guide you back toward a life of sobriety. We’re a New Jersey-based treatment center that provides outpatient addiction treatment and support for co-occurring disorders. Victory Bay Recovery Center employs clinicians and staff dedicated to helping you return to a stable and sober life. We provide a full set of resources for treatment, therapy, family support, and sober living. Don’t let addiction treatment myths stop you from getting help. Call to speak to a counselor today at Victory Bay Recovery Center at 855.259.1624.