If you have been struggling with drug addiction, you may have heard this struggle referred to as a disease. But it can be hard to know if this is the right definition for addiction because addiction begins from an often-self-imposed cycle of substance abuse. However, these cycles occur as a treatment to other issues such as mental health disorders like anxiety or depression, or physical ailments like chronic pain disorders. You may also use a substance because of the emotional benefits it offers, and this can be because of a lifetime of negative coping or trauma. This complicates your agency, or choice, in this cycle. Is drug addiction a disease? The short answer is yes, because of its features and the way it affects the body, drug addiction is a disease. Because of this, it is important to seek treatment from a care center that will offer the right treatment to cure this disease. At Clearhaven Recovery, our experienced clinicians can help you as you heal.
What Defines Drug Addiction?
Drug addiction is a way of describing a cycle of drug use. When an individual interacts with alcohol, opiates, or benzodiazepines, it affects the brain chemistry in a way that can cause a numbing of emotions or artificial happiness. This can overwrite negative body experiences such as physical or emotional pain. Unfortunately, it also creates an association between the act of taking a substance and the feeling produced by that substance.
There are many reasons why you may begin to abuse a substance, but most often it has to do with coping with certain symptoms. These symptoms can be in response to emotional, physical, or social stimuli. Using a substance to treat these symptoms can lead to abuse of the substance as your body and emotional coping become regularly engaged in that use. This leverages chemical happiness to artificially alter daily life. With most substances, it will take more of the drug to reach that same state with each use. This can negatively affect your body and oversimplify the emotional coping process in ways that affect you and your environment. Drug addiction is a complicated process, but is drug addiction a disease?
Is Drug Addiction A Disease?
A disease is a medical condition that restricts your body from functioning normally. Just as depression or bipolar disorder affects how neurotransmitters work in the brain, substances like alcohol or opiates stimulate different centers of the brain, as well. This means that these substances create conditions for a new normal within your brain.
Substance dependency means that your body is dependent on certain conditions. Withdrawal symptoms are deeply debilitating because you have become dependent on a substance to continue normal function. But addiction also ravages the body in the ways that many known diseases can. Alcoholism can seriously damage your liver function, but there are many illnesses that can impact your liver similarly, such as certain types of cancer, hepatitis, autoimmune disorders, and nonalcoholic fatty liver disease. When treating each of these diseases, professionals determine how to best address symptoms and quality of life. It is the same with addiction. Your care team will help to:
- Manage symptoms
- Diagnose new problems
- Treat the cause of the disease
With addiction, that treatment process will target what makes you abuse a substance. At Clearhaven Recovery, our clinicians are experienced with treating the disease of addiction.
Contact Clearhaven Recovery Today
Facing addiction recovery can be a daunting process. But you can take solace in knowing that you will have professionals that truly understand that addiction is a disease. Addiction treatment requires a personalized understanding and holistic approach to truly provide relief. We understand that every individual struggling with addiction has unique needs for recovery and we will work with you to create a customized treatment plan. Our recovery center offers innovative and flexible treatment techniques to help you heal. You can contact us today via our secure online form or give us a call at 833.970.2054 to discuss individualized treatment options. Clearhaven Recovery is the clear choice for your path to wellness.