what is the cycle of addiction to drugs/alcohol???
SHORT-TERM GRATIFICATION: First there is short-term gratification. You feel good NOW. There is a strong short-term gain that causes you to assume the drug or behavior is good for you.
LONG-TERM PAIN AND DYSFUNCTION: The short-term gratification is eventually followed by long-term pain. This pain, part of which is from physical withdrawal, and part of which is from the inability to cope psycho-socially without drugs/alcohol, is the direct consequence of using the addictive chemical/s.
ADDICTIVE THINKING: The long-term pain and dysfunction trigger addictive thinking. Addictive thinking begins with obsession and compulsion. Obsession is a continuous thinking about the positive effects of using alcohol and drugs. Compulsion is an irrational urge or craving to use the drug to get the positive effect even though you know it will hurt you in the long run. This leads to denial and rationalization in order to allow continued use. Denial is the inability to recognize there is a problem. Rationalization is blaming other situations and people for problems rather than drug use.
INCREASED TOLERANCE: Without your being aware that it is happening, more and more of the drug is required to produce the same effect.
LOSS OF CONTROL: The obsession and compulsion become so strong that you cannot think about anything else. Your feelings and emotions become distorted by the compulsion. You become stressed and uncomfortable until finally the urge to use is so strong that you cannot resist it. Once you use the addictive chemicals or the addictive behaviors again, the cycle starts all over.
BIO-PSYCHO-SOCIAL DAMAGE: Eventually there is damage to the health of your body (physical health), mind (psychological health), and relationships with other people (social health). As pain and stress get worse, the compulsion to use the addictive drugs or behaviors to get relief from the pain increases. A deadly trap develops. You need addictive use in order to feel good. When you use addictively you damage yourself physically, psychologically, and socially. This damage increases your pain which increases your need for addictive use.
Drug addiction typically goes like this:
the beginning: -A person may feel like their life is going down the drain, they may be unhappy, there's a sense of hoplessness. Anything can start a drug addiction, from a break up, a stressful job, someone's surroundings etc. -It can also start from peer pressure and being around their friends that are doing it.
Next: -The person tries drugs and it makes things appear to be better. It makes your problems disapeer temporarily and you forget about all the things going on in your life. The drugs are used as a way to numb your feelings and drown out the world.
Then: -Once you start and you see how this drug is making your numb and making you forget about things, you start to take more of them and more often. Every problem that comes up in your life - you solve it with drugs. You lose all ability to think like a normal person and the drugs come before anthing else.
Next: -This is when the lies start. They dont want anyone to know about their addictions or how bad things have gotten - so they lie to their friends and family. This leads to more guilt and causes the addict to want to use even more often. This is when they hit rock bottom - they will lie, cheat and steal from anyone to get what they need, the drugs
-Once you have hit this point nothing is more important than drugs. You usually have lost everything, money, your home, your friends, your family, etc. At this point, the drugs are affecting the person less, they can't seem to get that same high or that same feeling as the begininng because their body has grown tolerant to the drug and it is less effective.
-The cravings start, and the pain from not having them will set in. Withdrawls that make a person wish they were almost dead.
ya I missed the c in cycle. I am doing a speech and I need a visual so I was going to do a small poster bored with the cycles of addiction. and I cant find anything on it can you help?
What do you mean by cycle? I'm a recovering drug addict - possibly I could help you.
thank you both soo much!