For many individuals, addiction is a cycle. The truth about addiction is that there is no cure. Often, those who begin the recovery process will relapse and develop an addiction once again. However, this does not mean they failed. The cycle of addiction is natural and common, and it’s important to understand what to do in each phase to continue maintaining recovery.
The Cycle of Addiction Begins with Abuse
Peer pressure, experimentation, self-medication, and stress are just some of the reasons why people use addictive substances for the first time. In reality, no one plans or tries to develop an addiction. Often, it comes out of nowhere. After that initial use, many people fall into the cycle of addiction.
Over time, the more of a substance a person uses, the deeper they fall into addiction. Dependence on addictive substances begins to control all aspects of their life, including their career, finances, and relationships. Without the proper support, an individual’s quality of life can decrease significantly and even put them at risk for overdose.
Withdrawal and Detox
Withdrawal symptoms are what keep individuals in the cycle of addiction. When a person develops an addiction, their body becomes dependent on the substance to feel normal. Withdrawal symptoms can include an array of mental, physical, and behavioral symptoms, including:
- Fever and sweating
- Anxiety and paranoia
- Muscle aches and pains
While withdrawal symptoms typically only last a week, some can last up to a month. When a person begins experiencing withdrawal symptoms, they have two choices. The first is to abuse their substance of choice again to gain some relief. The other is to start detox.
Detoxification, or detox, is when a person stops using a substance entirely to flush it out of their system. This is typically the first step of any addiction treatment program. However, this process should always occur with medical supervision to prevent any complications. A rehab facility can also make the process more comfortable through withdrawal management techniques.
Pursuing Recovery and Treatment
A way to break the cycle of addiction is through treatment. When an individual begins treatment, they come to understand why they used drugs in the first place. This could be due to a toxic home environment, stress, or an underlying mental health disorder. Whatever the case, professional rehab specialists will determine a course of action to help the client find their best path to recovery.
There is a lot of misunderstanding when it comes to relapse. For many people, it’s an inevitable stage of the cycle of addiction. Relapse occurs when a person uses an addictive substance again after achieving sobriety. Although some people are capable of returning to healthy and occasional substance use, such as drinking alcohol at holiday parties, most people cannot. In fact, a single drink can spiral back into an addiction.
However, relapse does not indicate failure. One step backward doesn’t mean the whole process was a failure. In reality, it’s all part of the cycle of addiction.
Begin Treatment With Melrose Recovery
If someone you love struggles with addiction or recently experienced a relapse, then it’s time for them to get help. Whether this is your first time pursuing treatment or your fifth, Melrose Recovery Group has the addiction treatment programs your loved one needs to begin recovery. Some of our substance abuse treatment programs include:
- Alcohol addiction treatment
- Heroin addiction treatment
- Mental health treatment
- Dual diagnosis treatment
To learn more about Melrose Recovery, call us today at 866-271-3438.