Drug Addiction

What is Drug Addiction?

Drug Addiction originates in habitually consuming hard drugs [i.e., illegal or controlled substance without prescription]. Entering the body variously [via drinking, smoking and inhaling, snorting, smelling, injecting, inserting, etc.] for the express intention of gaining pure pleasure and relaxation it produces, in the long run it reveals itself to be the Trojan horse it is. It is an induced/acquired mental (i.e., psychological and emotional) and physical disease. It is not, as has been long characterized, a chemical dependency problem. Research has caused it to be redefined as the continued/repeated pursuit of pleasurable or mental reward producing activity despite enormous downside. From multiple angles, it is an expensive and unfortunate misadventure.

What are the causes of drug addiction?

Any odd combination of factors could open these dark doors! Misdirection by others or circumstances, mischievousness and a sense of daring on the part of the self [sometimes mischaracterized as a positive choice - exploration] as well as a down, defeatist mentality [things are bad and nothing will change], or seeking relief for physical pain could get one going along this path. Of course, access, affordability and an absence of vigilant social and religious taboo also play their roles. Staying on this trek long enough impacts the body and the brain in such a way that drug ingestion changes from being a choice and a temporary fix to a necessary, constant companion. With brain’s pleasure center taking over [impacting dopamine production or absorption], the body’s defense mechanism having been compromised and the brain’s decision making center [prefrontal cortex] failing on the task, addiction sets in. Quitting stops being an option. A completely new disease impacts the person for the first and only time, and perhaps forever!

How do you cure drug addiction?

There is no cure. There is medically supervised detoxification and abstinence at the outset. This is then followed by Cognitive Behavioral Therapy combined with a spiritually-based value reorientation and instilling corresponding virtue. The detoxification may take up to 90 days. Medicines are used to manage withdrawal symptom that can be severe depending on the level and duration of addiction. Also, medicine usage may continue long into the future to mitigate periodic urge or craving to fall back upon drug.

What illnesses can drugs cause?

First of all, sustained use of drugs messes up the brain’s dopamine management (pleasure-reward-movement) center in its middle by either over-producing it or creating barriers to its absorption. With access supply of dopamine, the brain readjusts by reducing its production. So, to get the same level of pleasure and/or reduction of pain, doubt, anxiety or fear as before, more drug has to be used or it has to be used more often. This is the phase when tolerance to drug use is build up. Also, blood flow to the pre-frontal cortex is diminished causing impairment of judgment that further complicates the situation. Some drugs cause hallucination [LSD], others bring about euphoria, extreme sharpening of senses - sensitivity to light, sound, touch and smell as well as distrust and paranoia [opioids, cocaine] that sometimes leads to violence and crime, still others bring about bad breath, mood swing, suicidal tendencies, raised vital signs, weight loss, susceptibility to infections, etc. [methamphetamine]. Consequently, a wide variety of emotional, physical, behavioral and social issues arise.

What are the dangers of drugs?

See above. It’s a lifetime disease that cannot be cured but managed because some of brain’s neuro-transmitters may have been permanently impacted. Unless treated, it can easily escalate and become fatal. Also, treatment is multi-faceted, especially requiring close medical supervision during the earliest phase of abstinence because recovery, strangely enough, can turn fatal.

How do drugs change your brain?

See above. Neurons in the brain are affected by drugs in conducting their business of sending, receiving and processing signals using neurotransmitters. Chemically, heroin and marijuana mimic one of body’s neurotransmitters. So, they can artificially activate neurons.

Can drugs permanently change your personality?

Long-term use of drug can alter one’s personality until at least recovery has stabilized. Different drugs affect differently. Studies are still ongoing. In the short run, by acting on the central nervous system, an addict’s consciousness, mood, perception and behavior can be altered by psychoactive or psychotropic drugs [e.g., alcohol, heroin, ecstasy, cannabis, etc.]. This is affected by heightening some emotions while tamping down on others. Psychedelic drug like LSD, for example, taken even once, can change personality for the very long haul.

Do drugs cause permanent brain damage?

Drugs begin their influence on a person by impacting the brain and causing euphoria. Permanent damage can also arise from seizures, stroke, and poisoning of some brain cells.

What are the signs of brain damage?

There could be one of a possible handful. For example, chronic fatigue or headache, memory loss, visual impairment, reduced attention span and concentration, irritability, impulsiveness, moodiness, emotional outbursts, sleep loss, dizziness, seizure, and depression, slowed comprehension and communication, sensory loss, lack of appetite, lack of awareness or denial of any injury, and difficulty in body temperature regulation.

Do drugs affect your memory?

How can I overcome drug addiction? First, seek help in two arenas or in two forms: spiritual and behavioral reorientation driven by logic as well as spiritual awareness and sensitization. Understand what is happening to you and how. Agree to a set of rules. Then admit that there is a problem and that it is bigger than you. However, it is not hopeless. Redemption and rehabilitation is but a decision away. Next, accept culpability and act upon the course suggested by the program coach. Know how you came to be where you are now and your triggers well, and your practiced responses should any of them get pulled.

Where should I go for help?

Other than turning to tptChoice’s service, one may turn to residential treatment centers that have trained medical and health professionals, in-house health and fitness facilities, and high quality food service, so as to isolate an addict for an extended period of time – away from drugs as well as distractions and influences caused by friends, associates and familiar meeting places and agendas until a complete weaning is achieved.

What is the tptChoice Way to alleviate drug abuse as well as addiction?

Our way combines a structured spiritual journey [that shows the big picture in a meaningful way requiring practical commitments and undertakings. Note: ‘Our 12 Steps’] with a logical, practical, step-wise [Cognitive Behavior Therapy or CBT] behavioral reorientation. Along the way, it addresses comorbidity [other addictions] and codependency [self or other people in an enabling role] as well as the potential presence of psychiatric disorder.

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Drug Use Disorder

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Once viewed as an impulse control failure, GA has been reclassified as a mental disease. No matter what gambling has been to a person, how it has arrived and is pursued – as a past-time or a challenge, casually or regularly, self-discovered or inducted, as an early starter or a late-comer, openly or secretly, in solvency or in-debt, family-sensitive or irresponsible - girded by precarious financial condition, its steely grip produces tremendous psychological and emotional

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Intimacy Disorder

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