Wednesday, October 5, 2022

Do Addicts Ever Fully Recover

How Long Does It Take For The Brain To Heal From Drug Use

Do Most Addicts And Alcoholics Recover? | How Families Play A Key Role In Addiction Recovery

The brain is constantly changing. The drug that you took will affect it by changing the neurons in the reward sector, which will make you feel good every time you take the drug. The result of this change is more release of dopamine, and this will give you a rush of good feelings. The change in your feelings will last a short time, but the actual change to the brain will last longer.

Your ability to stop cravings is also altered when this occurs. Now, when the body sees the drug or needs it, you will face more serious cravings for it. The amygdala, a part of the brain, has been altered, and it will trigger an urge for the drug when it wants it.

Dont Be Afraid In Asking For Help

You may want to prove that you can do it alone in facing this alone, but it will be the hardest way to go. While addiction makes you want to isolate yourself from people, recovery involves having people with. Although not all people are in full support for your recovery, you can find those who will be.

It is important to develop a support group. These are a group of people that you know will help you through your recovery process. It may not involve much, but youll know you can go through it with them.

Close family and friends are the first ones on your list. They can provide the utmost care for you, are you go through recovery. Although not all may be in the same boat, there are still those who will be with you no matter what.

Dont be down when none of them may be with you, it is also important to seek professional help. Consider seeking for counselors or joining self-help recovery groups.

You might be hesitant to go with groups of people that you dont know, but indeed, a self-help group significantly increases your chances of recovery. This group involves people who are going through the phase as you or those who are recovered and are assisting. Joining this group will help you in changing your negative thinking, as well as providing a healthier environment for recovery.

Getting Treatment To Overcome An Addiction

There are many different treatments that can help you during the process of overcoming an addiction, including medical and psychological treatments. There is no one “right” type of treatment, although some approaches are better supported by research than others.

Cognitive behavior therapy helps many people, and research shows it to be very effective in helping people overcome all kinds of addictions. But CBT is not for everyone. Other approaches may be better suited for those who do not relate well to analyzing their thoughts, feelings, and behaviors.

Mindfulness-based approaches have become very popular and can be easier to relate to for many people. As with CBT, mindfulness is helpful for people with underlying mental health problems, such as anxiety or depression.

A variety of other treatments can be helpful, including couples counseling, family therapy, and neurotherapy. Medications can sometimes be helpful in the short term or the long term. Talk to your doctor about the options that are available to and appropriate for you.

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What Helps You Stay Clean And Sober

The tools you develop in treatment, as well as everything you do in life, plays a big role in whether and how long you will stay clean and sober. The following factors have been shown to assist in the maintenance of sobriety:

  • A reduced-risk environment
  • Increased self-confidence, or self-efficacy
  • Spiritual support
  • Involvement in a 12-step program
  • Helping others

These factors are addressed in the through the levels of care as well as with after-care support.

Your Story Can Help Shatter Stigma

How Does Addiction Happen?

You can help others simply by being open about your own experiences. Stigma, shame, and punishment keep people with substance use disorders in the shadows. If you are in a position where you can safely share your own story openly, you can help normalize recovery. Learn about becoming a Shatterproof Ambassador.

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Disclaimer: THIS WEBSITE DOES NOT PROVIDE MEDICAL ADVICE. The information contained on this website is not intended to be a substitute for, or to be relied upon as, medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. This website is for informational purposes only. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health provider with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition.

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What Is Heroin Addiction

According to the National Institute on Drug Abuse, an addiction is a relapsing disease of the mind. A heroin addiction is characterized by:

  • Uncontrollable compulsive use of heroin
  • Using heroin despite the consequences
  • Changes in the brain structure and function due to heroin use

Under this definition, heroin is a chronic reoccurring disease. Although this seems to state that a heroin addict cannot really recover, you also have to look at what recovery is.

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Brain Damage Caused By Mdma Or Ecstasy

MDMA or Ecstasy, is a drug that dramatically changes the brain from the very first time you take it. It alters the ability of neurons to transport serotonin, which is vital to many functions of the brain. When you take this drug, serotonin is unable to be transported as effectively, and in the long run, this can lead to problems with memory and learning. Some studies suggest that the brain does not completely heal from MDMA use even after 18 months of being clean.

Other studies show that the healing begins around two weeks after being clean, and scans will look similar to a control group at about 18 months, even though the neurons may act differently than before. So, after just a single use, youre looking at over 18 months of healing before youll be 100-percent better. Thats a long time for a hit that wont last through the evening.

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How Long Does Recovery Take

While there’s a lot of research available on active drug and alcohol abuse, we still don’t have enough studies on long-term recovery. Participants often leave the studies early, and it’s hard for scientists to agree on the definition of “long-term recovery,â which can range from 3 months to almost ten years.

Most of the data we do have focuses on the first two years of sobriety, but we know that recovery is a lifelong process. Addiction is a chronic illness, and like any chronic illness, there will be good days and bad days. The studies that we do have give us insight into recovery and the predicting factors for long-term success. These include:

Tips Towards The Road To Recovery

In considering recovery, you must ensure that you are determined to go for it. Addiction treatment, as I have indicated earlier, takes a lot of time and effort to accomplish.

Rehabilitation centers give programs that vary from your need. Some may take 30-days, some will take 90-days and on others, this may still be extended. Furthermore, as it takes time to be addicted, there will also come a time where you can be clean from drug addiction.

Furthermore, this article will give you tips on what you might need for recovery.

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Become Educated And Stay Involved

In most cases, drug use significantly changes the lives of all those close to the addict none more so than the immediately family. For this reason, the family often needs help, too.

Many drug and alcohol treatment facilities provide education for family members on topics such as how addiction works and how to handle stress. These programs are key to restoring the health of the family unit after addiction.

The entire family needs to be involved in the treatment as well as the recovery process. To do this, the family will need to learn the best ways to support the recovering addict. Agreeing to participate in family education is a great way to support the addicts recovery.

Many outpatient family therapy programs are available for you and your loved ones. You meet with a certified therapist who teaches you intervention skills you can use at home during stressful and trigger situations. You learn healthy communication skills and ways to express feelings and needs without projecting blame.

Looking At Old Recovery Data

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The research completed years back indicates that about 30 percent of people in drug or alcohol treatment would still be sober or clean a year later.

In looking at a study of 1162 individuals who remained sober at least eight years, it was determined that it was challenging to really determine who would stay sober. For example, only about 33 percent of people who were sober less than a year would remain sober. However, the research indicated that for those who could acquire five years of sobriety, their chance of relapse was less than 15 percent.

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“That 75% number includes obviously people at the more severe end of the spectrum,” said Dr. David Eddie, who co-authored the study on recovery success and also teaches at Harvard Medical School. “So there is absolutely hope.”

Indeed, most people people don’t just survive addiction. Research suggests they often thrive in long-term recovery, reconnecting with family and enjoying economic success.

“They end up achieving things they wouldn’t have achieved if they hadn’t gone through the hell of addiction,” Eddie said.

Researchers say these hopeful findings are significant because they might inspire people to keep attempting recovery even after they endure multiple relapses.

“That can be a challenging thing to face,” Eddie said. “How do you keep getting back on the horse after repeated attempts that have failed?”

What Does It Mean To Recover

So, what exactly is “recovery”?

How do you know if you’re “in recovery”?

Truthfully, there’s not a cut-and-dry answer to this question because different people define recovery in different ways. Think about your own understanding of what recovery means. Generally speaking, people in recovery want to be free of an addiction to drugs or alcohol.

For most people, recovery is synonymous with complete abstinence from all substances. What recovery entails for you will vary depending on your goals and circumstances. Recovery can be defined by religious beliefs, focusing on positive feelings and community, or by a journey of self-reflection and self-improvement.

However you approach it, recovery is a journey. Everyone’s recovery is different. You’ll know when youâve reached your own recovery goals by how you feel rather than how other people think you should be.

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What Percentage Of Opiate Addicts Recover

The opiate epidemic is alarming many people in the US, as the number of people addicted to pain pills and heroin is astounding. What are the recovery statistics looking like for opiate addicts?

Theyre not great. Opiate addicts have more chances of relapsing than those addicted to other drugs. In a 2010 study, 109 opiate addicts were studied during and after residential treatment for drug addiction. The percentage of relapse was quite high, with 91 percent stating they had relapsed. The number of those that relapsed within one week of treatment was 59 percent. And, about 80 percent relapsed after the completion of a detox program.

Another study done in 1996 by George Vaillant, MD, received a great deal of attention. 724 men were studied over 50 years. These men had been alcoholics, but got sober through treatment, meetings, on their own, or a combination of methods.

The results showed that once the men hit two years of sobriety, relapse occurred about 40 percent of the time. Once they hit the five year mark, their chances of relapse decreased significantly, rarely occurring. Theres actually a good bit of evidence to suggest that more addicts recover at some point in their lives than those that dont.

Making The Decision To Change

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But sooner or later, most people who have an addiction decide a change needs to happen. Once the decision is made, most people have a specific goal in mind. It might be to quit entirely, to quit some addictive behaviors or substances , to reduce the amount of time or money spent on addictive behaviors, or to reduce the harm of an addictive behavior.

For example, many drug users decide to quit heroin or meth but continue to drink alcohol, or smoke cigarettes or marijuana. Many heavy drinkers have the goal of just one drink a day, or only drinking socially.

Getting clear on your goal before putting it into practice is helpful for success in changing an addictive behavior.

Although quitting entirely is the best path to wellness, reducing or eliminating the most harmful substance use is a huge improvement and will greatly reduce the harm caused.

The same is true of behavioral addictions: Anyone who decides to quit eating entirely is putting themselves at serious risk for an eating disorder. But stopping overeating and embracing a healthy diet is a healthy decision to change.

Complete abstinence from sex can be another form of sex addiction, known as sexual anorexia, yet developing healthy intimacy after a sex addiction can be greatly fulfilling. And reducing obsessive exercise to healthy levels is likely to improve health and wellness more than quitting exercise entirely.

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The Hard Truth About Recovering From Addiction

For many people, a substance addiction was an intruder that encroached onto every aspect of their lives. Those whove successfully recovered from an addiction worked hard to understand what led them to substance abuse, and how they could keep the addiction from invading their lives again.

Sadly, there are several myths and misconceptions that surround addiction and keep many who suffer from telling others about what theyre going through. One struggle includes the social stigma that often surrounds addiction. People often hesitate to tell their families and friends for fear of being criticized or abandoned.

The best thing people can do for someone in recovery from an addiction is stand by their side during their ongoing journey.

Recovering from an addiction is difficult when done alone, even well after treatment. Its important for people to understand what their loved one endures while being addicted. That way, families, friends, and spouses can band together to help the person in recovery stick to their sobriety plan.

The Top Tools Being Utilized For Research On The Brain In Recovery

Functional brain measurement techniques:

Methods that provide dynamic physiological information about brain function/activity. Functional imaging techniques allow scientists to measure the contributions of various structures to specific psychological processes . Commonly obtained while participants complete tasks, functional images offer insight to the brain regions that are activated, or recruited, to perform a given task. Atypical brain function in patient populations can include reduced neural activation or a different pattern of brain activation as compared to healthy control populations.

Functional Magnetic Resonance Imaging

Also known as a functional MRI , this imaging technique measures brain activity by detecting changes associated with blood flow and oxygenation.

  • Numerous studies utilizing functional magnetic resonance imaging have shown that drug cues elicit increased regional blood flow in reward-related brain areas among addicted participants that is not found among normal controls

See the fMRI in action:

Structural brain measurement techniques:

Imaging techniques that allow one to examine the brains anatomical structure. Structural imaging provides static information, and is analogous to taking a photograph of the brain. These images permit evaluation of gross anatomical abnormalities, including tissue atrophy and reduced white matter integrity .

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