It is difficult to come to terms with the fact that your use of illegal or prescription drugs has reached a problem stage. Some people find this to be the hardest thing to deal with in terms of addiction and the recovery process. Actually admitting that the problem exists can be more difficult than any other aspect of the illness. You may already be aware that things are not right and know how drug addiction affects your life, but it might be easier to deny the problem exists than to admit these issues out loud. Maybe, you are hoping that if you ignore your current situation things will get better on their own; they will not.
Addiction is an illness of the brain that requires treatment. You need to remember that it is not a curable illness yet but there are millions of individuals who have managed to overcome their addictive tendencies and move on to a happier, healthier life. They did so by completing a comprehensive recovery programme that included a detox, rehabilitation, and aftercare.
How Did You Get to this Point?
When pondering the issue of how drug addiction affects your life and the lives of those around you, you could get to thinking about how you got to this point in your life. It may have been fine in the early days of drug use, where you had a choice and could control your use of recreational substances. However, without you even realising, your use of these substances got out of hand to the point where you are now struggling to function without drugs.
Perhaps you do not even use illegal drugs but are still struggling to control your use of a different mood-altering substance. It could be that you were prescribed strong medication for a medical condition and have no found that you are unable to quit this drug. Prescription drug addiction is a growing problem here in the UK, but most people are still unaware of the dangers of this type of medication or of what actually constitutes abuse of it. Whatever substance you are using, if your use of it has spiralled out of your control, you will need help to overcome.
Not everyone who uses illegal or prescription drugs will develop an addiction though; some individuals are more prone to addiction than others are. While most can use these substances without ever having a problem, others will develop an addiction that threatens to destroy their life.
Addiction rarely happens instantly. In the early days of drug use, most people have a choice. They decide when to use chemical substance and when to stop. Nevertheless, as time goes by, their body and brain adapts to the chemicals.
In some people, mood-altering chemicals hijack the reward system in their brain. Their brain releases substantial amounts of feel-good chemicals known as dopamine when they take illegal or prescription drugs. The intense feelings of pleasure and wellbeing experienced is something that they want to recreate over and over.
To recreate these feelings, they will take the substance again and again until their body gets used to them and start to crave them. At this point, the affected person will have little or no control over his or her use of the drug. He or she will feel compelled to use even knowing that doing so will have a negative impact on their life and the lives of those around them.
Is Your Life Affected by Drug Addiction?
The thoughts of how drug addiction affects your life may be something that worries you. Or maybe you have never actually made the connection between your drug use and the problems that you are having. It is common for those with addiction to not see the damage their drug use is causing them.
In fact, the individual may even believe that the use of drugs helps to relieve the problems he or she is experiencing. It is true that some people begin taking drugs in the first place to help block out painful memories or because they are suffering with mental health problems.
Nonetheless, continued regular abuse of drugs can cause health issues, the breakdown of relationships, and money problems. Below we have listed just some of the ways in which life can be affected by addiction.
Drug abuse can lead to many health problems. In the early days, the issues with physical health may not be so obvious and often the use of the drug can mask any pain or symptoms. This makes it more difficult to spot these problems. However, if you continue to abuse drugs regularly over a prolonged period you are likely to experience lasting problems, some of which can even become life-threatening. It is not uncommon for addicts to go on to experience heart disease, liver damage, lung disease, kidney disease and hepatitis C.
Continued abuse of mood-altering chemicals can affect the brain and lead to many types of mental health problems. There is a strong link between drug abuse and mental health issues. Some individuals use drugs to help relieve mental health problems such as anxiety disorder or chronic depression; however, regular abuse of mood-altering drugs can actually cause mental health problems in some people. This can include paranoia, schizophrenia, psychosis, and dementia.
Try as you might, you will almost certainly find it tough to keep relationships on track when abusing drugs. Drugs can lead to a physical change the structure of the brain, making it harder for you to think clearly. You are likely to continue abusing drugs even when knowing that to do so will have negative consequences for yourself or your loved ones. This is because you have no control over your compulsion to use.
Your friends and family will probably find it hard to understand why you just cannot stop using drugs when it is causing so much harm. It is difficult for them to understand the pull that the drugs have over you. This can lead to strained relationships. Addiction is often referred to as a family illness because every member of the family will be affected in some way or another.
If you are funding an illegal drug addiction, you will know that your financial situation is negatively impacted. The cost of buying illegal drugs and the fact that your consumption levels will continue to increase can leave you and your family in difficulty. You may even begin to use money that is needed for other things, or start borrowing from family members, friends, and lending institutes in a bid to get your hands on the drug you crave.
Even if you are addicted to prescription medication, you could find that your financial situation is affected. Just because you are getting your medication from the NHS does not mean you will not suffer financially. After a while, your doctor might decide that your prescription should not continue and that you should stop taking your medication as you no longer need it, unaware that you have developed an addiction. Out of desperation, you could find yourself buying medication online or turning to street drugs to get your fix.
Finances are also affected by an inability to work, caused by the effects of the substance being abused. The longer the abuse of this substance continues, the worse the effects will become. Poor performance or continued absenteeism can often lead to unemployment.
Is There Help for Addiction?
When thinking about how drug addiction affects your life, you may begin wondering if there is anything you can do to improve your current situation. The good news is that you do not have to continue living with addiction hanging over your head. Although there is no cure for addiction, it can be treated with a programme of detox and rehabilitation.
There are some individuals who cannot imagine a life where drugs do not play a role; these people fail to get the help they need to get better. Nevertheless, recovery is possible for everyone – even those with a severe drug addiction.
Recovery Lighthouse has helped many people to overcome their addictions to various drugs. Even those who believed that a sober life was out of their reach have managed to go on to live productive lives with their loved ones.
They completed a programme of detoxification to break their physical addiction and then went through a series of therapeutic treatments with support from a team of dedicated and fully trained professionals. Here they learned new positive coping strategies that they then took with them on their return to independent, sober living.
This is possible for you too. All you need do is get in touch with us here at Recovery Lighthouse. When you do, we will discuss your situation with you to determine what your treatment requirements are, if any. If we believe you have an addiction that requires treatment, we will go through your options and explain each in detail so that you are fully informed.
Our clinic is staffed by a team of top professionals who will do everything in their power to help you get well. Please call today to see how we can help you break the cycle of addiction for good.