Drug addiction is depicted through every type of media, whether it is realistic or not. Through alternative movies such as Requiem for a Dream and Trainspotting audiences are able to see through the eyes of an addict. Are these characters true representations of drug addiction?
With all the propaganda thrown at us it is easy to believe in certain drug addiction stereotypes, which may be damaging and hurtful to those suffering from drug abuse and their loved ones. Drug addiction may be misunderstood by many, mainly due to circulating stereotypes and lack of direct experience.
Marijuana leads to drug addiction
Many believe marijuana is a gateway drug that leads to abuse of other substances, but according to CNN, although the use of marijuana is not to be encouraged, the use of prescription drugs such as Adderall or OxyContin has been shown to be extremely addictive as well as easily accessible to teens, making them all the more dangerous.
Drugs fry your brain
Another offensive sentiment is that drugs permanently “fry your brain,” which insinuates that those in recovery can never truly live normal lives. It is not a guarantee that drug abuse will indefinitely cause permanent brain damage, and it is possible someone in recovery can thrive in society: mentally, physically and socially.
Some people fake drug addiction to get attention
As put-together as a person in recovery may seem, it is never acceptable to ask if they truly have an addiction. Addiction can remain hidden for years or even decades, so it is extremely important to accept someone’s addiction as fact instead of refusing to believe it exists. They were brave enough to seek help, so it is imperative to support instead of challenge someone dealing with drug addiction.
All addiction “stories” are the same
It is a common misconception that a drug addict must hit a “rock bottom” in order to seek recovery or truly get help. The lowest point for one person may be different than the next. Someone may seek help after an arrest whereas another addict may try rehabilitation after overdosing and coming extremely close to death. A drug addict does not have to wait for “rock bottom” in order to enter recovery because their lowest point could be irreversible.
Drug addiction is extremely prevalent as well as misconstrued within our society. An astounding 23.5 million people 12 years and older needed treatment for a drug or alcohol problem in 2009, yet only 2.6 million people (11.2 percent) sought treatment at a rehabilitation facility, according to the National Institute on Drug Abuse. It is crucial for those suffering from addiction to not be ashamed to get help and enter treatment. Recovery is not humiliating – it is liberating. Your life truly begins when you enter treatment.
Did you know an addiction can be caused by a mental disorder?
One of the primary reasons that mental disorders and substance abuse so often go hand-in-hand is that drugs and alcohol can provide an escape from the pressures of mental health problems. Self-medicating is surprisingly common: you’re not alone.
But unlike real, effective, long-term solutions, such as medication and detoxification in a treatment center, drugs and alcohol won’t amount to effective treatment.
If you suspect that your loved one is suffering from addiction, then take our free 3 minute assessment.