The Cycle of Addiction – Unless You Stop it, It Never Ends
The cycle of addiction is a tough thing because we often don’t even realize that we’re in a cycle. When we think about addiction, we often believe that it’s just the way that things are. Many of us who haven’t directly dealt with addiction think that if you use a substance one time, you’ll become addicted to it. Others think that they won’t get addicted because addiction is a choice.
The truth is that neither of these assumptions is true. In fact, it’s somewhere in the middle. While the percentage of people who develop an addiction is not super high, it’s high enough to be alarming. What’s even more troubling is that many addictions go unreported, which means that lots of people with addictions are not getting treatment, and the numbers might actually be much higher than experts estimate.
Understanding that there is a cycle of addiction can help to stop it in the early stages, especially when it comes to kids.
The Beginning of addiction
At first, when a person uses a substance they might not really like it all that much. Or, they might try it and think its okay, but not be hooked on it. Some people do wind up enjoying the way the substance that they try makes them feel, but using or taking something one time likely won’t make a person an addict.
It’s the continued use of substances or alcohol that gets them started on the cycle of addiction. So, say you take a pain pill because you’re hurting. One time, even two or three times might not be an issue. If you’re taking prescription pain medications because they have been prescribed to you, you might not even get on the cycle of addiction – as long as you take them as prescribed.
When substances are taken for a long period of time, or abused more and more often, is when we begin to see the cycle get started. The trouble is, it’s not even really an obvious thing. It’s not like one day you take that opioid and think, oh, this is it, and I’m on the path to being addicted now.
It’s more like you take it because it makes you feel so flipping good. So, you take it with your friends, and you feel good. Sometimes, you get pretty faded, but that’s okay, you’re not hooked – yet.
Do this every couple days for about six months, though, and you’re looking at developing a physical dependence. In fact, these days you notice you have to take more and more to be able to get high like you used to. You might even feel a little bit sick when you don’t take your substance of choice. Hello, tolerance. You’re now on the cycle of addiction.
When You Start to Realize There’s Something Wrong
There will come a point when you are recreationally abusing substances that you begin to realize there is something going wrong. You might find that you have withdrawal symptoms when you’re not getting high. This is a telltale sign that you’ve developed a physical dependence on your substance of choice.
However, something else is going to happen. You’re going to start thinking about getting high or drunk every single day. You’ll think about it night and day. When you’re high, the only thing that will drag you down is the thought that you won’t be high forever.
You might find that you’re sad when you think of not using your substance of choice anymore. You may discover that the thought of cutting the source of your joy out of your life is just too much to bear. When people talk to you about your substance or alcohol abuse – because they see it – you get really mad and defensive. What do they know anyway, right?
Yeah, you’re hooked. You’re actually addicted now because you’re not only physically dependent on the substance that you’ve been using, but you’re also emotionally attached to it, and this is what makes up an addiction. Both the physical and emotional attachment have you in a pretty tough spot right now.
So, You Do What Lots Of People Try to Do – You Quit
You do it. You quit using. You just stop cold-turkey. You tell yourself that this is it. You’re done and you’ll never do it again. The withdrawals are crushing, but you’ve got this. You might even make it through to the point that you’re no longer physically ill from not using.
Maybe you make some significant progress in your recover, or, maybe you don’t. The point is that the cravings come back, and you tell yourself that you’re just going to use a little. You’re just going to get a little high, just enough to ease the demon in your brain. Just enough to soothe your soul.
So, you use or drink just a little. It feels good for a bit, and you start to feel better, but somehow, you know that you won’t be done right there. This is the cycle of addiction at it’s best, because now, you’re back to wanting more of the source of your addiction, and you’re craving it worse than you were before.
Why They Call it a Cycle
Why do they call it a cycle of addiction, anyway? What makes it a cycle? Why isn’t it the line of addiction? It’s because addiction on paper looks a lot like a circle. It’s kind of round. With each time you use your drug of choice or DOC, you become more and more hooked on it. You get more and more attached.
The problem is that even if you don’t want to use anymore if you keep doing what you’re doing, you’re making your addiction stronger. Hence, the cycle continues.
What to Do When You’re Trapped
When you’re feeling trapped in your addiction, it can be really tough to know what to do to get out of it. It’s like a merry-go-round that never stops, and if you’re trying to jump off, it often feels like things speed up and it’s just too dangerous to jump.
So, when you’re here, what you might be looking for is that hand to help you off that speeding carousel. We’ll offer you a hand, and a soft place to land. All you have to do is give us a call and ask us for help. We’re here to help you with breaking the cycle of addiction, and it starts with finding you the addiction treatment that will work for you and your lifestyle.
You might be surprised at how many rehab options there are, and that’s a good thing because this is the scariest part. When you jump, where will you land? Making a decision is just so hard because right now, your whole life is wrapped up in your addiction.
When you call, we’ll talk to you about you. Your life, your needs, and what you want to see in your addiction recovery journey. It’s important in making a solid match, and that’s why we get to know you so well. Besides, with so many choices, how will you know if you’re making the right one if you don’t even know what’s out there? Our caring counselors understand what goes into recovering from an addiction, and we know it starts with a great treatment option.
Next, we’re going to take care of all the tough stuff. Think of financing your treatment. At Elite Rehab Placement, we don’t leave you to work through these logistics alone. We’re going to talk to your insurance company for you, and even explore other financing options so that you can relax knowing that treatment won’t be out of your league.
When it’s all said and done, we’re going to have plenty of addiction treatment options for you to choose from. You’re going to be able to give your favorites a call, and even visit if you’re close, and if you find what you’re looking for, we’ll walk with you right until you check into treatment. If not, no worries, because there’s no obligation for you.
The cycle of addiction can be nearly impossible to break without help. We’re here to help you take the leap and start changing your life. So, why not give it a try? Hanging on tight and hoping for the best isn’t working, so maybe it’s time to try something different.