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1. Addiction is a mental illness.
Unfortunately, many people see chemical dependency as a moral downfall. However, this idea is now overwhelmingly disputed by research.
Scientific evidence shows us that continued use of a substance can change how the brain functions, making that substance seem absolutely necessary to the body.
In fact, in some cases, the drug is viewed as so vital that withdrawal can be physically dangerous and even fatal.
As a result, medical or psychiatric intervention is often recommended for drug and alcohol addiction. A combination of medically-assisted detoxification and long-term therapy is most effective in treating this illness.
2. Most drug addictions now start at the doctor’s office.
According to a recent study, most teen drug addictions began with a doctor’s prescription.
The study, which was published in Pediatrics journal, “found a strong correlation between teens’ taking the drugs for medical reasons and then later taking them for ‘non-medical’ reasons.”
A similar correlation was found with illegal drug use. Many teens who abused heroin started with prescription painkillers, which produce a similar effect.
Such statistics raise some ethical questions when it comes to prescribing pain medication. Are there non-addictive alternatives? Are doctors taking measures to prevent dependence? Should they be prescribing such drugs to teens at all?
3. Chances are you’re probably an addict.
Statistics estimate that between 80 and 90% of American adults consume this seemingly harmless drug every day: caffeine.
While caffeine may not have the severe effects that are found with more dangerous drugs, it is just as capable of altering your brain chemistry. Not to mention, it’s just as likely to cause withdrawal (Smithsonian.com).
When you find yourself irritable with a pounding headache before your morning coffee, you’re experiencing a similar body process as those who try to quit an addiction. Of course, for those addicted to drugs like narcotics or depressants, such symptoms are often much more debilitating.
GenPsych Substance Abuse & Detox Programs
GenPsych offers substance abuse programs at four of our locations (Brick, Bridgewater, Lawrenceville and Livingston). We foster an accepting and comfortable environment for those who are recovering from addiction.
Through our Ambulatory Detox Program, GenPsych provides safe, outpatient medical detoxification for clients. This program allows individuals to receive care and support during the day, while being able to return to their lives and their families in the evening. Learn more about our Ambulatory Detox Program here.
We also offer Partial Care (PC) and Intensive Outpatient Programs (IOP) for those experiencing substance abuse and co-occurring disorders. Learn more about our Adult Substance Abuse Programs here.