Progression of Addiction
The progression of addiction to substances is a slow process that without help will only worsen over time.
Known as a chronic disease of the brain, addiction is characterized by the inability to consistently abstain from a substance or activity, impairment in behavioral control, craving, diminished recognition of significant problems with behaviors and interpersonal relationships, and a dysfunctional emotional response. Like other chronic diseases, addiction often involves cycles of relapse and remission. Without treatment or engagement in recovery activities, addiction is progressive and can result in disability or death. Addiction is not a disorder that occurs overnight. In fact, the progression of addiction may take some time, and you may not realize you are becoming addicted to a substance until it’s too late.
As the progression of addiction begins, there may be some subtle warning signs or characteristics important to take notice of:
- Handling more alcohol or drugs now that when you first started to use.
- Having the shakes in the morning and finding relief with alcohol or drugs.
- Experiencing memory blackouts or periods of the day you cannot account for.
- Noticing withdrawal symptoms (feeling ill) when you stop taking a drug.
If you can identify with any of the statements above, you may be on the path to addiction. It’s important to know that you are not alone, and help is available. No one should have to live under the grip of addiction.
If you or someone you care about is struggling with addiction, please get help now. Contact us anytime at (337) 456.9111.
Adair, J. R., Ph.D. (n.d.). Addiction 101: A disease affecting both patient and family. Retrieved June 03, 2016.
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