Common Misconceptions About Addiction

Common Misconceptions About Addiction

Each year, roughly 21 million Americans struggle with at least one addiction to a harmful substance. Despite the widespread prevalence of addiction, the disorder remains largely misunderstood and grossly untreated. Improving our collective understanding of addiction and reducing misinterpretations regarding the disorder could help eliminate long-held stigmas and make it easier for people to seek treatment. With that said, here are some of the most common misconceptions about addiction to be aware of.

Addiction Is a Character Flaw

One of the most damaging misconceptions surrounding addiction is that it is a character flaw. The idea that addiction reflects poorly on one’s character often causes those who struggle with addiction to feel shame and guilt. Such embarrassment can cause them to hide or lie about their addiction and avoid seeking treatment for fear of judgment.

To avoid perpetuating such a harmful misconception, one needs to understand that addiction is not a character flaw. In reality, addiction is an illness that is treatable and is possible to overcome with the proper resources and care.

Addiction Can Be Overcome With Enough Willpower

To reiterate the last point, addiction is an illness. Most rational people wouldn’t expect someone with a disease to simply will it away. The same concept applies to someone with an addiction.

While a person with an addiction may have made the initial decision to put drugs into their body, the addiction that formed as a result was not their choice. Addiction is essentially a brain disorder in which a strong chemical reaction in the brain creates a physiological need for a certain substance. As with most brain disorders, one cannot typically overcome an addiction using willpower alone. Specialized treatment is often necessary for recovery. Treatment center Texas are available here.

People Can Never Fully Recover From An Addiction

Another common misconception about addiction is that, once you are addicted to a substance, you can never fully recover. In other words, once you are an addict, you are always an addict. This misconception is especially damaging because it creates a feeling of hopelessness in those who suffer from addiction.

As a result, they may assume that there is no point in seeking out treatment because there is no real hope that they can make a full recovery. However, this notion is completely false. While relapse often occurs throughout the recovery process, it is entirely possible to recover fully from an addiction with the right treatment and support.

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