Chemical dependency is a chronic brain disease that robs someone of the power to choose. Typically, a person might decide to have a drink or not. A chemically dependent person with an alcohol use disorder doesn’t have the option. However, there’s treatment that can help.
Understanding the Breadth of Chemical Dependency
Unlike a process addiction such as gambling or sex, chemical dependency involves one or more drugs. Examples include alcohol, prescription medications, and street drugs. The chemicals in these substances alter someone’s mood by acting on the brain’s pleasure center. As a result, the experience becomes its own reward.
Does this describe you or someone you know? People don’t plan to get addicted to a substance. They believe they can control use. But in reality, the chemicals alter the brain chemistry and create the dependence.
Symptoms of a chemical dependency include a single-minded focus on procuring the drug, using it, and hiding the consumption. You might encounter legal or professional problems. Relationships may suffer because of substance abuse. In some cases, people don’t want to admit that their drug or alcohol use is out of control.
Sometimes, they cut themselves off from relationships with loved ones because they don’t want to deal with the confrontations. Others believe that their drug use is not unusual and that they can handle it just fine. They don’t realize what others see. However, people typically know in their gut that they need to stop using.
Why Don’t People Just Quit?
At this point, it’s no longer possible to choose whether or not to use. You have to pick up the drink or procure the drug. Failure to do so results in painful and potentially dangerous withdrawal symptoms. Adding insult to injury, the enjoyment you once derived from the drug is no longer present.
In many cases, individuals find themselves in a vicious cycle that makes drug use possible. The chemical dependency appears to meet a need. For some, it could be self-medication. For others, it could be the creation of a buffer between themselves and the real world.
If you do nothing, the brain disease of addiction progresses. You take more of the substance to reach the same high. You combine drugs to arrive at a new level of high. Eventually, you may suffer fatal consequences from an overdose or because your body gives out.
Getting Help for a Chemical Dependency
Following the disease model of addiction, it’s important to remember that substance abuse is a primary condition. Its chronic nature makes a cure impossible. That said, therapists can successfully treat it and send it into remission. Doing so starts with detox.
Once you’ve broken your physical dependence on the substance, experts can now work with you to overcome the psychological addiction. Examples of common treatments include:
- Dual diagnosis assessment and treatment as part of an integrated addiction model, which assists individuals with underlying mental health problems
- Living consciousness that puts you in the driver’s seat of your recovery efforts with cognitive behavioral therapy for pattern recognition
- Yoga provides a holistic component to getting well that grounds you, which is instrumental for those suffering from addictions
- Functional living and life skills training help you relearn how to live sober with topics centering on nutrition, health, and exercise
- Group therapy offers the opportunity to leave a life of self-imposed isolation by sharing with others in a supportive environment
Some people struggling with addiction worry that they’re too late to benefit from these types of programs. That’s simply not the case. It’s never too late to quit. The trick is to work with a rehab facility that will customize its treatment model to your individual needs.
Overcoming Addiction at Healing Springs Ranch
The compassionate and knowledgeable addiction experts at Healing Springs Ranch tailor therapeutic approaches to your preferences and requirements. No two guests at the facility undergo the exact same treatment plan simply because everyone has different needs. You don’t have to continue suffering from a drug problem. Call us 866-656-8384 for immediate assistance to a way out.