All psychoactive substances, including prescription medications and alcohol, carry the risk of dependency. Understanding how to stop drug abuse is a complicated issue, as addiction has no known cause or cure. That means anyone, regardless of age, race, or gender, can develop a substance abuse disorder.
With tens of millions of Americans battling a substance abuse disorder annually, addiction is a relatively common problem that will impact 1 out of every 7 Americans in their lifetime. The opiate epidemic has led to an increased focus on improving access to treatment, as opioid addiction and drug overdoses have become increasingly more common.
To find out how to stop drug abuse, it’s important to understand how addiction works and how it’s treated.
Addiction and Recovery
Substance abuse disorders occur when you compulsively abuse your substance of choice despite wanting to stop and dealing with troubling consequences as a result of your use. Psychoactive substances can cause psychological or physical addiction and it’s possible to have both dependencies to the same substance at the same time.
Prescription medications, even when taken exactly as prescribed, can likewise result in physical and/or psychological dependency. As addiction progresses, your tolerance continues to increase. That means you have to constantly use more to feel the same pleasurable effects of intoxication. Your brain associates your substance of choice, as well as people, places, and things that remind you of it, with pleasure. Exposure to triggers creates intense cravings, which, combined with neurotransmitter imbalances caused by addiction, makes it difficult to stop using without help.
Addiction causes changes to your brain chemistry, emotions, and behaviors, which can lead to severe consequences such as damaged relationships, employment instability, and financial problems. Because addiction continues to get worse until you recover, early treatment is an essential piece of a successful recovery plan. Even though addiction is incurable, treatment ensures you have the support, guidance, and understanding necessary to maintain sobriety.
How to Stop Drug Abuse
Addiction can severely diminish your overall wellbeing and quality of life, making it important to understand how to stop drug abuse. Avoiding all psychoactive substances is the best way to prevent a substance abuse problem. However, recreational use of alcohol and other substances, like marijuana, is widespread. That can make it hard to avoid experimenting with drugs and alcohol.
If you’re wondering how to stop drug abuse, remember that treatment plays a vital role. It takes time for your brain and body to fully recover from addiction and the longer you abuse drugs and alcohol, the more difficult it is to maintain lasting sobriety.
It’s common for people struggling with addiction to deny that they have a substance abuse problem. Noticing a friend or loved one is unable to control or reduce their substance use is typically a sign that they need help. Offering to help those you’re close with connect with treatment is one way that you can help reduce drug abuse.
If you’re still wondering how to stop drug abuse, it’s important to know that you can’t control the actions of others. However, you can make sure that you offer support and help to those you care about when they’re struggling to maintain their sobriety.
Substance abuse treatment options include:
- Inpatient treatment programs
- Partial hospitalization
- Intensive Outpatient Programs
- Individual therapy program
- Family therapy program
- Group therapy program
- Detox services
- Sober living
Finding Help Today
When you’re watching a friend or loved one battle an addiction, you may wonder how to stop drug abuse. Since addiction is a chronic condition, early treatment is the best way to improve recovery outcomes. Another important thing to remember is that it’s never too early, or too late, to start recovery. To find out more about our substance abuse treatment programs, contact us today at 1.713.528.3709.