Drug Abuse Myths: Learn the Facts
There are many myths surrounding drug usage and abuse. Debunking these untruths is the first step in understanding how dangerous and widespread the problem of drug abuse can be.
Drug abuse is voluntary.
While it is true that an individual often begins by voluntarily, even recreationally, using a drug, as time progresses this action develops into a habit. Why? The continued use of addictive substances changes the way the brain function. This results in compulsive and uncontrollable use.
In order for treatment to work, the person has to want it.
Often times, people with addictions are in denial and refuse treatment. However, many people in treatment because their loved ones urge them to seek help, or because they were ordered to do so by the judicial system.
Treatment is not necessary- if someone truly wants to stop abusing drugs, they can do it on their own.
Because addiction is a disease, it can be very difficult for people abusing drugs and alcohol to achieve long-term abstinence without assistance. The biological addiction to drugs cause long-term users to develop strong, irresistible cravings. Early and guided intervention is important to successful sobriety.
A person must hit “rock bottom” before they will seek treatment voluntarily.
Many factors contribute to a person seeking substance abuse treatment. These include, pressure from family or employers, personal acknowledgement of a problem, or personal loss. For teenagers, school officials and parents often recognize early on that a teen is in trouble with drugs, which leads to the seeking out of treatment options.
Forcing someone into treatment is not helpful.
Treatment does not have to be voluntary. The legal system can force people into treatment, and these people can succeed just as well as those who seek help themselves.
People who abuse drugs are weak and/or stupid.
Drug and alcohol abuse is an equal opportunity disease. It does not discriminate in any way and it occurs in people of all ages, and from all walks of life, regardless of their intelligence or emotional wellness.
People who abuse or alcohol drugs need to be put into hospital-based treatment programs for at least a month.
Untrue. Substance abuse treatment is available in a wide range of settings, in different ways and for varying lengths of time. It can be provided by hospitals, residential facilities, clinics as well as with the aid of medical doctors, counselors, and therapists in private offices. People progress through drug abuse treatment programs as various speeds, so there is no one predetermined length of treatment. Drug rehab takes as long as it takes for that individual.
These are just a few of the myths concerning illicit substance abuse. It is important to educate yourself on drugs and alcohol, so that you can better understand the disease of addiction.