What is Addiction?
Addiction occurs when an individual no longer feels as though they can stop drinking or using drugs. Initially this person may have thought that they would be able to control their usage, however drug/alcohol use alters the brain and puts the substance of abuse before even their very basic needs (food, water, shelter, etc.).
The human body is amazing in how it adapts to our current lifestyle. Over time, an individual’s body adjusts its homeostasis in order to function properly with the substance present. So basically, once a person becomes addicted to a substance, they need it in order to feel normal.
Alcohol and substance use disorders were classified as diseases in 1956 by the American Medical Association. Although they are diseases just like diabetes and cancer, the amount of social stigma surrounding these particular diseases is vast in comparison. For example, when people hear the term “alcoholic,” it often brings an image to their mind of a homeless man under a bridge drinking a bottle of alcohol out of a brown paper bag. This is the stereotype of our society. In reality, many people who have alcohol use disorders are high functioning and do not appear to have a problem with alcohol. They are able to work, pay their bills, and take care of their responsibilities. This does not mean that they are not struggling though. If you feel as though you may have an issue with alcohol or a particular substance, ask yourself the following questions:
- Once you start drinking/using, are you able to easily stop?
- Do you usually drink/use in social situations or while you’re alone?
- Are you having any problems in your relationships with others?
- Are you spending more money on alcohol or drugs than you previously did?
If you find that it’s difficult to stop once you’ve started drinking, that you oftentimes drink alone or that you’ve been drinking to cope with relationship or financial issues, you may benefit from substance counseling. At Appelman Law Firm, we’ve worked with hundreds of clients who have struggled with all sorts of addictions, and we’ve helped them get the support they need. If you or a loved one is battling with addiction, we can help provide guidance during this difficult time. Contact us today for more information on counseling services.