It has taken society as a whole a long time to accept that addiction is a disease and not merely some type of bad behavior committed by deviant individuals.
That said, such beliefs are still not embraced by all. Moreover, misinformed subjects tend to spread misconceptions about addiction that often place an appreciable percentage of persons experiencing substance dependency under greater pressure and renders their chances of recovery more difficult.
Common Misconceptions About Addiction
Most Addicts Do Not Match Typical Stereotypes
When some people think of substance dependents, they conjure images of dirty subjects living on park benches, junkies with needle mark-laden arms staggering in alleys or gutters, or abusive and reckless alcoholics wreaking havoc in their personal and professional lives.
In reality, however, these images could not be further from the truth. In a solid number of cases, addicts are successful professionals, family-oriented people, and pillars in their community stricken by the disease known as addiction.
Addiction Results From Moral Or Personal Failures
While any number of personal struggles might exacerbate the problem, such issues or moral deviancy are not their root cause. In actuality, addiction can impact people of all ethnic, religious, and socioeconomic backgrounds.
Dependency Primarily Impacts Young People
Another common myth is that addiction usually afflicts young persons who had sewn too many wild oats. Once again, the reality falls under a completely opposing spectrum. In fact, recent research conducted found that 14 percent of all emergency room visits in seniors is drug or alcohol related.
The Cycle Of Addiction Cannot Be Broken
There is a faction of individuals fostering the notion that the cycle of addiction can never be broken. However, in reality, the once an addict always an addict belief is a complete fallacy.
Like any other disease, addiction requires treatment. In certain instances, said treatment can be arduous and lifelong. However, with proper control, the malady can be kept under wraps and its victims can once again lead healthy, productive, and happy existences.
Moreover, those supporting the aforementioned notion often also suggest that relapse equates to weakness. However, relapse does not mean treatment has failed. Said occurrence means the ailing subject is facing a powerful illness requiring either more aggressive treatment or a different clinical approach.
Dependents Can Talk Their Way Out Of Dependency
A discernible percentage of people actually believe dependents can end their addictions merely by talking themselves out of it. Once again, such assertions are strictly myth.
Individuals stricken with any type of illness wish they could talk or wish serious ailments away. That said, conversing with an experienced team of counselors and other mental health professionals might play a valuable role in identifying the reasons the addict began using and in coping with associated emotions.
Treatment Is Universal
One of the most prevailing myths is that one specific treatment works for everyone. That said, in reality, addiction treatment is not a one-size-fits-all approach.
Typically, therapy is tailored to meet the recovering subject’s needs. Each individual brings their own set of feelings, histories, pain, general health level, and other variables to the table. Said factors must be taken into consideration before any firm protocols can be established.
Willpower Is All One Needs To Conquer Addiction
The belief that strong willpower is the only attribute needed to overcome addiction is one of the biggest misconceptions spoken. Once again, addiction treatment specialists cannot reiterate enough that dependency is a disease necessitating professional treatment.
Only Hard Drugs Are Addictive
There are those who believe only hard drugs, such as cocaine, heroin, and amphetamines precipitate addiction. Proponents of such arguments ascertain that substances like alcohol, over-the-counter preparations, and prescription drugs cause dependency because users recklessly ingest them. However, in truth, almost every drug possesses at last some addictive properties.
Few problems create a phenomenon called stigma more than substance addiction. Stigma is a prevailing societal attitude about a given subject. In reference to addiction, stigma causes several potential dangers.
Such attitudes inspire people to think less of persons with dependencies. Such actions often make addicts feel ashamed or embarrassed about their problem, which could worsen their reliance on the drug they abuse or heighten their reluctance to seek treatment for said issue.
Fortunately, people holding such attitudes can conquer stigma through personal efforts, such as:
- Educating oneself about addiction and the addiction process
- Developing a more understanding attitude
- Creating positive, safe spaces for dependent friends or family members
- Joining a support group
Above all, stopping stigma’s spread may be accomplished by speaking publicly. When greater numbers of people debunk existing myths, the faster associated stigma can be overcome.
Our southern Florida treatment facility understands just how detrimental the stigma of drug addiction and the myths associated with said ailment can be. Our facility works hard to educate the world about the realities of chemical dependency and shoot down prevailing but misleading and potentially harmful myths. Call us at 844-639-8371.