Whether you’re sipping coffee in the morning, watching Netflix at night, or heading out to the bars with friends, addictions are everywhere. In fact, our brains are actually hard-wired to form addictions.
But why can’t our brains crave healthy stuff like vegetables? It all comes down to chemistry: the chemistry in our brains and the chemistry of what we’re ingesting. Alcohol, marijuana, nicotine, and even sugar all have chemical structures that are heavily addicting.
When even your brain is working against you, is there any hope for overcoming an addiction! Thriveworks Pooler confidently says yes! Overcoming an addiction is hard, there’s no way around that. It can be an uphill battle against genes, habits, and the addiction itself. It doesn’t want to leave you, and it may stay with you far after the drugs do.
But hard and impossible are two very different things, separated by hard work, perseverance, and a good support system. The Addiction Counselors at Thriveworks Pooler have years’ worth of tools and knowledge to help you battle your addiction, and we’ll be with you every step of the way. You can gain control over your life and have peace again.
What Are the Effects of Addiction and Substance Abuse?
Addiction forms because of your brain’s Dopamine cycle. Dopamine is a messenger that responds to rewards. Based on the situation and other factors, your brain will release calculated amounts of dopamine. When drugs enter the equation, they produce a surge of dopamine that the brain can’t handle. The brain responds by lowering the amount of dopamine it produces in other situations.
So that “high” that makes drugs so addicting is just a surge of dopamine- the feel-good molecule! When drugs become a norm in your life, the brain begins to rely on the drug-produced dopamine high. It produces less dopamine on its own. Now, you can’t feel good without the drug, and addiction forms.
It can feel like you have no control, and that is incredibly frightening! Thriveworks Pooler Addiction and Substance Abuse counselors are here to help you gain back that control. Struggling with an addiction is not a personal flaw or weakness. Your brain is relying on the wrong feel-good stimulus, but we can remind it of a healthier source.
Researchers coined the term neuroplasticity. Basically, your brain is never stuck in a state. Just like how an addiction can mold it, counseling and other techniques can shape it back to a healthy brain. That is the end goal of a Thriveworks Pooler Addiction Counseling session.
When Should I Get Help for My Addictions?
It can be difficult to know when your drug use has gotten too far. It’s easy to rationalize it. Some of the lies we can convince ourselves include:
- I need it for a stress relief. I’ll stop using it when life isn’t as stressful.
- It’s a social outlet, I only do it with friends.
- I’m still a good employee, no one even knows about it! I deserve it.
When do we draw the line? Tolerance levels are the strength and frequency in which you can use a drug before addiction takes hold. It is different for everyone! One person may start to have a problem after one or two usages. It may take someone else five or six for the same drug. As a general rule, if you or a loved one has had even the passing concern, it’s worth talking to someone about potential options. Even if you decide counseling isn’t the right path, you’ll be looking out for yourself. Thriveworks Pooler is one option that can help you heal and grow into a life you’re proud of, a happy and fulfilling one.
The quicker someone reaches out, the easier and quicker the recovery process. Some signs that may warn of an addiction include:
- Cravings for the drug/alcohol continue throughout day
- Use becomes regular and chronic
- Unsustainable or reckless spending patterns
- Painful physical reactions to withdrawal (headache, anxiety, inability to sleep or oversleeping, muscle aches)
- Changes in social patterns or groups
- Lying or being secretive
- Unable to feel happy or controlled without the drug
- Mood changes
Different symptoms exist for different people, drugs, tolerance levels, and many other factors. So, this is not a comprehensive list! Thriveworks Pooler Addiction Counselors understand how terrifying and isolating an addiction can be. But your situation is not hopeless! Support and some professional guidance can be powerful tools along the path to recovery.
What Does Addiction Counseling Look Like?
You are so much more than your addiction. Your passions, goals, and outside struggles are all parts that make up who you are. Thriveworks Pooler understands the importance of looking at all of you as we recover from addiction.
A lot of the time, addiction brings with it depression, anxiety, low self-esteem, and a host of other problems that you deserve to be free of. We’ll address these co-morbid issues as well in an Addiction Counseling session.
Of course, even if it was depression driving the drug use in the first place, the addiction can’t be rooted out the same way depression can. So, we will also work on breaking the habit of addiction and remolding your brain to a healthy state.
Finally, an addiction counseling session at Thriveworks Pooler will always be unique to you. Because you are a unique human being who deserves a unique counseling plan!
Addiction can make it seem like everything you are is centered around this drug. But that’s just another one of its clever lies. You deserve the chance to discover more parts of you and to do so healthily. Thriveworks Pooler is excited to walk beside you as we fight for the freedom you deserve.