Addiction and Recovery: 10 Common Myths
Not many people understand how addiction and recovery work. It doesn’t help that popular media tends to skew how it actually works. Instead of remaining disillusioned, here are 10 common myths about addiction and recovery that most people believe.
1. Drug Addiction is a Choice
One of the biggest misconceptions is that someone chooses addiction and can stop at any time they want to. But a visit to any Los Angeles County addiction treatment will tell you addiction is no different from any other disease such as cancer, diabetes, or heart disease.
2. Employed People Aren’t Addicts
People are used to seeing drug addicts as being dirty homeless people, completely unaware that even the most regular people with jobs can become addicts too. High-functioning addicts are a real thing, and they’re even better at covering the tracks of their addiction so that no one is the wiser.
3. Relapse Is A Sign Of Failure
Relapse can occur at any time during the recovery process and it is completely natural. However, relapse does not amount to failure. Most of the people who attend treatment will relapse within one year. After all, changing any bad habit is very difficult to do.
4. You Would Know If Someone Close To You Was Addicted
Addiction is not as transparent as you might think. As mentioned earlier, high-functioning addicts have the ability to hide the signs of their addiction so that no one would know that they’re addicts.
5. All Treatment Works For Everyone
There is no such thing as a one-size-fits-all treatment. People fall into addiction in different ways, so it’s only normal that there be different types of treatment to work for each person. A successful treatment option is one that has been tailored to the individual and their specific needs.
6. Alcohol Addiction Is Less Serious Than Drug Addiction
Alcohol is more accessible than specific drugs. It’s also more acceptable to drink alcohol in public. That makes it very easy for someone to become an alcoholic. In turn, it can be difficult to determine when someone has a drinking problem and to recognize it as a problem overall.
7. Treatment Means Addiction Is Over
An addiction takes a long time to form, so it takes an equally long time to get over it. Once you enter treatment, that doesn’t mean that a person is no longer addicted. It requires a lot of effort to continue remaining sober long after rehab is over.
8. Addiction Struggles Should Be Kept Secret
Those struggling with treatment believe that people will think less of them for it. So they tend to keep those struggles a secret and not share their concerns with other people. This places a psychological burden on the person that can take a lot of effort to maintain.
9. Successful Recovery Requires Hitting Rock Bottom
You don’t have to be at your worst as a prerequisite for receiving treatment. Recognizing an addiction as early as possible will prevent it from becoming worse and taking control over a person’s life.
10. Drug Addicts Are Bad People
Addicts are no different from other people; they aren’t bad just because they have an addiction. No one plans to become an addict. They might make bad choices in order to meet the needs of their addiction, but they aren’t an addict because they’re a bad person.
If you or someone you know might be an addict, it’s important that you speak to a medical professional to help you find the treatment that you or a loved one needs.