If you or a loved one is suffering from a drug addiction, now classified by mental health professionals as a substance misuse disorder, it can be an incredibly trying ordeal. There is so much that goes on surrounding this topic, and unfortunately a lot of harmful stigmas around it. That means that many of the treatment options are also stigmatized.
Thankfully, in recent years this has been the case less and less. While more work needs to be done on this front, in general we seem to have a more open mind towards the suffering of addicts and their families. If you are looking for help in Colorado, hopefully this article will assist you.
How Addiction Impacts our Lives
As I somewhat touched upon in the introduction, substance misuse disorders touch our lives in many ways – be it personally or on the people around us. First, I will discuss what drugs can do to us on an individual level. You can read more about all of this at this link: https://addiction.surgeongeneral.gov/sidebar-many-consequences-alcohol-and-drug-misuse.
It is important to remember that drugs alter our brains. Some of them mimic naturally occurring chemicals and bind to our neuron receptors but send the wrong signals. Others cause the mind to flood with an excess of a natural chemical that the neural network cannot filter out. Whatever they do, they change the neuron pathing and end up creating a reward cycle.
Eventually this can lead to becoming dependent on the drug. Without it, you might experience mild to severe withdrawal symptoms. These could be something like irritation or misanthropy but may also be hallucinations or painful headaches. None of them are pleasant.
Some other physical impacts of this disease are changes in appetite. You might find that you are always hungry, or never hungry. Weight gain or loss that is unusual when in tandem with using a substance could be a sign. Your sleep patterns could also be disrupted – many develop forms of insomnia and get very little rest. This can further lead to a gaunt appearance.
Of course, these are not the only ways that it can affect us. Another huge aspect of our lives that can be disrupted is our social and work lives. If you are feeling lethargic and having a hard time sleeping, it could result in being late to work for example. Your overall performance might degrade.
This could lead to punishments or in the worst case, being fired. Obviously, you would also fail any drug testing enforced by a company if that is how your place of employment operates. However, our interpersonal relationships will most likely take a hit as well.
If you are desperate for money and to purchase a drug, you might take to petty theft – even from family members or friends. These substances can truly wreak havoc on our minds and warp us that far. You may also find that you are lying often or getting into many arguments. Family and friends might cut ties with you.
Obviously, none of these impacts sound like fun or like a good thing to happen. That is why getting treatment for a substance misuse disorder is so imperative. Without it, we might be unable to return to our normal lives and keep a sense of identity. In the worst-case scenario, we could even overdose and tragically pass away.
If you are unsure about the options that are out there, there are several programs and facilities out there. In Colorado there are places such as Mountain Springs Recovery Addiction Rehab that treat these ailments. Carefully consider your choices, as this decision is important.
You will want to find a place that accepts your insurance policy, of course, but after that there are a few other key features you may want to seek. Comfort and compassion from the staff is paramount. You should be able to feel safe and secure, not like you are being punished.
Resources for returning to the outside world are also ideal if you are going to an inpatient program. Adjusting again can be difficult, after all. You should also look for a place that offers more individualized treatment options, as each of us has different sets of needs.
The Importance of Rehab
You might think that people can stop using drugs without rehabilitation services. In some, rare cases, this is true. However, this is not a problem to take lately. In fact, it is a matter of life and death to some extent. There is a lot of scientific evidence pointing to the effectiveness of these services and twelve step programs.
Of course, nothing will universally work for everyone. That being said, if we can save more lives by shining more light on these programs, that is nothing to turn our noses up at. Given the atmosphere of Colorado and how serious substance misuse disorders have become there, it is even more vital to understand here.
If this is unfamiliar to you, you can look at some statistics about it here: https://www.coloradohealthinstitute.org. As it details, a lot of people in this state tragically pass away due to overdoses – even more than those who die in fatal car crashes.
These are harrowing facts. Education is the first step of prevention, but this is not always possible. Especially in some environments. There are a lot of vulnerable groups, such as children whose parents are addicted to illegal drugs or alcohol. Often, they will be more inclined to start using themselves, and sadly some are even born dependent on a substance if their mother used during pregnancy.
So, if education does not prevent the problem, we must rise to the occasion with treatment. If you are worried that a friend or loved one is suffering from a substance misuse disorder, consider convincing them to check into rehab. At the very least, do your best to support them.
Sometimes this means cutting ties until they get sober. Examine your situation and do your best to decide what will be most helpful for you.