Drug addiction is a complex brain disorder that affects a person both mentally and physically. This brain disorder is characterized by a dependence on a substance or a set of behaviors that produce a desirable effect in the mind and body.
In the case of drug addiction, a person develops a dependency on the drug because of the effect it has on the brain and the chemistry within the body. Drugs cause a chemical reaction in the brain that produces feelings of euphoria, calm, or other pleasurable effects. This occurs through the activation of the pleasure centers in the brain. However, the drug does this artificially, and as a result, often blocks the natural activity in the brain that would produce the same effects. As such, the body and mind become dependent upon the drug to feel pleasurable sensations. If you or someone you know is struggling with drug addiction, the professionals at McAllen Drug Treatment Centers at (956) 854-2342.
Gambling addiction often occurs along with an alcohol addiction or sometimes in patients who are addicted to drugs with stimulant properties such as cocaine. Compulsive gambling is the desire and need to participate in gambling behavior even when the person no longer has the money to finance such endeavors.
While many people do not realize it, eating disorders are also addictions. This is due to the compulsive nature of eating disorders in which the affected person feels they must engage in specific behaviors and routines to lose or control weight and food intake. Those who suffer from eating disorders may also develop an unhealthy obsession with exercise. This means exercising even to the point of sacrificing other activities, relationships, and work.
Drug addiction treatment can occur in two formal settings, residential treatment centers (rehab) and outpatient treatment. In residential treatment the patient moves into the center temporarily while undergoing treatment. This separates the recovering addict from access to the drug, the triggers that precipitated use and addiction, and the people and places that they associated with when engaging in addictive behaviors. Outpatient treatment, on the other hand, allows a recovering addict to remain at home during the treatment process while still receiving the necessary assistance to get and remain sober.
Drug addiction treatment begins with detoxification. Detox gets the drug out of the person’s symptoms and helps them get over the initial withdrawal process (one of the more difficult steps towards recovery). While many people attempt to undergo detox at home, this can increase the likelihood that a person will not complete the detox process or that they will suffer serious illness or injury due to withdrawal symptoms.
Once the detox process is complete, the recovering addict will begin attending group and individual therapy to help identify the causes of their addictive and compulsive behaviors, identify triggers, and learn coping mechanisms to help them remain sober and to quit all behaviors that contribute to their drug addiction (including secondary addictions). Other alternative therapies include equine therapy, art therapy, yoga, acupuncture, and chiropractic care.
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