See the original article over at Tico Times clicking here to learn about myths and misconceptions regarding addiction recovery.
Addiction and addiction recovery can be a difficult subject to broach with a friend or loved one who’s suffering from substance use disorder (SUD).
Every person is different and each person’s road to recovery should be developed in accordance to their individual needs. That’s why programs like the ones offered at Costa Rica Treatment Center are designed on a person-by-person basis utilizing evidence-based practices and methods.
If you or someone you know is battling with addiction — whether it be to alcohol, drugs, or other substances — it can be a very difficult situation to understand. Contemporary media outlets, including movies, radio and TV shows, regularly portray addiction in a way that is not only misinformed and inaccurate but also harmful to people struggling with substance use disorder. They display common negative stigmas and outdated views on the disease often discouraging people struggling from seeking adequate help.
We feel it’s important to educate our readers on addiction to ensure we better serve those currently in need. Here are a few common misconceptions about addiction, as explained by Canada’s First Nations Health Authority (FNHA).
Myth: If you use drugs or alcohol, you’ll become an addict.
Fact: Many people who use substances are not addicts.
“…many people who try a drug once
[or make use of them recreationally]
do not become addicted.” says the FNHA. However, the more often a substance is used, the higher the risk of developing an addiction and consequently experiencing various negative health, social and financial consequences.
Although there are various influencing factors that must be taken into account in the process of developing addiction, most people with the disease have deep-rooted internal issues that in one form or another have resulted in the gradual manifestation of substance use disorder. Programs like the ones offered at Costa Rica Treatment Center help people identify the source of the problem and promote steady healing of the mind, body, and spirit in an integral and holistic manner.
Myth: Addicts need to hit ‘rock bottom’ before getting help.
Fact: Studies show that hitting ‘rock bottom’ can be more destructive than helpful to the process of recovery.
The line between “excessive” use and addiction is difficult to define universally. However, if a person is using substances in a toxic manner, they can certainly receive help before hitting the proverbial “rock-bottom,” according to FNHA.
The most important factor is to consider the person’s circumstance as a whole – not just their historical use of drugs or alcohol. Most viable treatment centers focus mainly on the person’s general health and well-being — not just the person’s substance specific use or the quantities being consumed in order to determine the need for treatment. Their aim generally includes helping people develop healthy relationships and reconnect with themselves.
Those fortunate enough to attend treatment programs often participate in individual, group and family therapy, as well as varied recreational activities geared toward renewing the outlook on life as a whole. A profound paradigm shift is a key part of the recovery process.
Myth: Addicts choose to continue using despite the damage it causes loved ones.
Fact: Addiction is not a choice. Plain and simple.
Overcoming addiction and achieving sobriety is a challenging process. If you or a loved one is battling addiction, it’s important to learn about addiction and harm reduction, before adhering to preconceived ideas about the condition. Plainly stated, the process of recovery involves more than just saying “no” to substances and entering into a state of abstinence.
“A life lived outside of the parameters of reality creates incongruency, lacks authenticity, leads to a generalized sense of emptiness and eventually produces enormous pain and suffering. Substance abuse fills the void temporarily but progressively becomes the agent that enhances and intensifies the pain… [the aim] is to bring our patients into a state of wellbeing fostering the ability to establish and participate in a relationship with reality. Our message is simple: A life based upon and grounded in reality – one that allows you to embrace and express your true self – is one worth living, one worth fighting for.” – Tony Feeney, Addictions Counselor at Costa Rica Treatment Center
Many people batting addiction travel internationally for rehab. This allows them to receive high-quality care that is significantly more affordable than at home. Costa Rica Treatment Center’s evidence-based treatment programs are engineered to guide patients toward recovery, even if previous attempts or drug rehabs have failed.