It may seem as though family members and friends are on at you to cut down the amount of alcohol you are consuming, or they may be worried that you are taking drugs. You probably think they are overreacting and making the situation seem worse than it actually is. However, if family members and friends have noticed that you are drinking too much or appear to be taking drugs, you can be sure the problem is worse than you think.
Most addicts will go through a period of denial in which they will refuse to listen to anyone who says they may have a problem with drugs or alcohol. It can take a long time for an addict to accept that he or she has a problem. Some will only begin to acknowledge it when it is causing obvious harm. Some will continue to deny the problem exists even then.
With so much stigma still attached to addiction, it is important to realise that it is an illness of the brain. It is not something that happens to people with no willpower or those who are inherently bad. It is not a moral failing it is an illness just like the flu or diabetes are illnesses.
Those who do not understand addiction often blame the addict for his or her illness. They say things like, he chose to take drugs in the first place. The truth is that, yes, you did make the choice to try drugs or drink alcohol, but that does not mean you chose to become an addict. Most people who drink alcohol do not become alcoholics.
It is hard to know why some individuals are affected by addiction while others are not, but there are a number of risk factors that increase a persons chances of developing the illness. In saying that, some people will have every single risk factor and still not become addicted.
Once thing is certain, however; addiction is an illness that changes the way the brain functions. Over time, a person can develop a tolerance to drugs and alcohol until they have become dependent on these substances. When this happens, they have no control over their urge to take the drug and, even when doing so will cause obvious harm, they cannot stop.
Do You Have an Addiction?
Addiction cannot be confirmed by a blood test at your doctors surgery, but there are certain questions you can answer that will indicate whether or not drugs or alcohol have become problematic. Below are a few examples:
- Do you get drunk on a regular basis?
- Do you often drink more than you intended to?
- Have you been drunk for days at a time?
- Do you take illegal drugs such as cocaine or heroin?
- Have you been taking prescription medication that was prescribed for someone else?
- Have you engaged in risky behaviour while drunk or high i.e. driven a car?
- Do you often wake up with little recollection of what happened the night before?
- Have you tried to stop drinking or taking drugs but been unable to?
- Do you need to drink more or take more drugs to get the same effects?
If you have answered yes to more than two of the above questions, you could have a problem. If loved ones are worried about you, then it is worth getting checked. Rehab Helper is a free service offering assessments to those worried about addiction.
Contact us today for free, invaluable advice and support. Provided you are honest with our advisors they will be able to put your mind at rest or confirm your loved ones fears. Do not delay as every day you waste could be another day given over to addiction.