Americas Growing Need For Addiction Treatment
An estimated 9% of the population of the United States above the age of 12 is current or former users of illicit drugs. Addiction refers to the habit of taking certain substances and being dependent to such an extent that withdrawal leads to emotional and physical discomfort.
Treatment For Addiction
- Assess one’s life. This is the most important step addicts can take to reclaim their lives. It involves making an admission that there is a problem.
- Get out of the addiction. This step involves removing any of the substances from one’s reach or environment.
- Join a support group or organization.
- Inform friends and family members about the decision to go clean.
- Commit to change. Full recovery does not happen overnight and treatment may take some time to be effective.
- Be positive and try again in case of a relapse.
Symptoms Of Drug Abuse
The Problems Of Addiction
Alcohol and cigarette abuse is believed to be one of the greatest risk factors for various diseases including certain forms of cancer. Overuse of prescription drugs can damage the liver and other vital organs.
Death as a result of overdose is common with certain drugs such as cocaine and heroin. Since 1980, the number of deaths as a result of overdose has risen by 540%. Many drug users contract various diseases such as HIV through intravenous drug injection. Stimulants cause rapid weight loss, teeth and gum disease and may cause cardiac arrest.
Since drugs tend to create addiction in users, many people use them long enough until they develop the stated health problems.
Many addicts take risks with their lives and that of others. This makes them bound to get into problems with the law enforcement authorities. One of the legal problems that may befall some addicts includes DUI convictions. Addicts often sell drugs to finance their habits or to make money from other people’s addiction.
In any case, they still get access to more drugs to abuse, which hooks them further.
Addicts may also get embroiled in violent crimes. This increases their chances of being incarcerated. Because drugs impair judgment, addicts may also engage in domestic violence, which also has legal consequences.
Drug dealers often look for wealthy and successful customers because they provide steady business. They do not care about the financial cost to the addicts or their families. Some addicts in a position of authority use their positions to embezzle funds to maintain their habits.
Substance abuse leads to loss of resources however minimal. The resources could be used on other meaningful activities. Good use of resources is the not a forte of addicts.
- Black outs
- Drug induced psychosis
- Disillusionment with life
- Long-term memory loss
The Most Critical Element In Treatment For Addiction
A critical element of addiction treatment is support. Though seeking professional assistance is one of the first steps towards recovery, having a solid support system goes a long way. The most helpful form of support is that offered by family members and close friends.