Stages of Addiction
We have seen first hand how addiction is affecting Oklahoma City, OK. Treatment centers in Oklahoma City see the result and effects of addiction on the community. Commonly, people addicted to drugs don’t know how addiction progresses and when to get help. The more addiction progresses, the more negative consequences come as a result. Addiction progresses in stages, regardless of casual or regular use.
Knowledge is key when it comes to addiction. There’s a lot you need to know when it comes to the stages of addiction.
Stage One: Experimentation
It’s human nature to be curious about things that you haven’t experienced personally. People often experiment with drugs because they want to know the sensations they create first-hand. They hear stories from others about how the drugs make them feel and want to feel the same way too. Unfortunately, experimentation is the first stage of addiction.
Using drugs socially often seems very safe. You are surrounded by others who have experience using the drugs and thus think there’s no danger to worry about when it comes to you using. The biggest danger of experimenting with drugs is that you don’t know how they are going to affect you. Many people actually overdose the first time they use a drug because they take more of it than their body can handle. An overdose can lead to brain damage, a coma or even death in some cases.
Stage Two: Regular Use
There are times when someone is forced to take to manage pain from an accident or injury. Even taking the medications as they are prescribed, doesn’t mean that an addiction will not occur. Prescription drug addiction in Oklahoma can occur quickly.
People often assume that drugs that are taken recreationally won’t lead to addiction because they only take them occasionally. It’s common to enjoy the way that the drug or alcohol made them feel and for cravings to start.
When someone takes the drugs on a regular basis, they often start to notice that it takes longer for them to bounce back once the high wears off. They may feel nauseous, tired, moody or even confused for much longer than when they first started using the drug or alcohol.
At this stage, people often think that they don’t have an addiction. They are taking the drug infrequently or as directed by their doctor.
Stage Three: Risky Use
Eventually, your body will become accustomed to the drugs or alcohol that you are taking. When this happens, you’ll have to take more of them to get the same feeling that you once did. Your brain will build up a tolerance to the drugs and chemical changes can take place. When the chemical changes in your brain take place, your desire for the drugs will become stronger and stronger. When you start taking more of a drug, it’s hard to know what amount is too much for your body to handle.
Pay attention to how often and how much you are using drugs or alcohol. If you notice that the amount you originally took no longer provides you with the results you want, your tolerance to the drug is much higher and thus the likelihood of developing an alcohol or meth addiction Oklahoma will be much higher.
Stage Four: Dependence
Once your body and mind become accustomed to the drug or alcohol, it will crave it. You will become dependent and need to take more of them to feel like you can function at all. During the early stages of addiction, it’s normal to feel to develop headaches, nausea, muscle aches, and even moodiness.
When you become dependent on the drugs, it’s very hard to stop using because every time you go without them, you’ll feel sick and in pain. It may start to take your focus throughout the day because you will constantly be worried about when you are going to be able to get your next fix. This will take away from other aspects of your life because you will be so consumed by the draw to use. Once you use again, you’ll feel ultimate relief, and this is what really leads you into becoming fully addicted to drugs or alcohol.
Stage Five: Addiction
This is also the stage that presents a lot of danger for users. People in addiction often take any drug that they can get if they are starting to feel the withdrawal symptoms that come as they detox from not using for an extended period of time. This can lead to overdose because they could take too much of the drug or alcohol unknowingly. It also leads to addiction to new sometimes even more dangerous drugs. Many people choose to mix drugs in an effort to get the high that they are used to getting too.
Why Does Addiction Work Like This?
Addiction often occurs because people don’t realize how or why it happens. While for the most part, you don’t become addicted overnight, but some drugs are stronger than others. Meth for example, is a drug that some users become addicted to almost instantly. They are addicted to how the drug makes them feel and instantly want to use it again and again.
Addiction is a brain disease. It is something that can be inherited from your parents. If someone in your family has had a problem with addiction, the likelihood of you becoming addicted is far greater than someone whose family has never had an issue with addiction. Avoiding anything that can be addictive is crucial if addiction runs in your family.
Addiction can also occur through curiosity. There are some people who start using a mild drug, such as marijuana and end up using harder drugs later because they are curious on how it makes them feel. It’s also possible for you to ingest harder drugs unknowingly because the marijuana that you smoked was laced with meth or heroin. You’ll instantly notice the difference in the high that you feel, and it can trigger you to want to try harder drugs to chase the high that you got when you smoked the laced weed.
Mental health issues that go untreated can also lead to an addiction. Many people who battle anxiety or depression choose to use drugs to try to self-medicate. Self-medicating only during times when you feel the anxiety can lead to an addiction because eventually, you’ll start taking the drugs in anticipation that something is going to cause you anxiety. You will then end up taking the drugs on a regular basis to avoid anxiety all together and develop a full-blown addiction to the drugs.
Someone is predisposed to addiction based off of who they surround themselves with, where they live and how exposed to drugs they are growing up. If you feel that drug use is acceptable, you’ll be far more likely to experiment at some point in life.
How Bad is Your Addiction?
When you are ready to stop using drugs, it’s best to get help from a professional treatment facility to make the process easier for you. We cater to the needs of each of our patients individually.
When you first stop using drugs, your body will go through withdrawals. Detoxing on your own can be dangerous because your body will go through a lot.
You may feel nauseous, have headaches, feel painful muscle aches and depending on how much damage you have done to your body, you may even have a heart attack. We offer medically supervised detox treatment to ensure that you are as safe as possible at all times.
At our facility, you’ll be given the foods that your body needs to heal properly. You will get mental health treatment to help you learn why you started to use drugs, help you learn to handle some of the guilt that you may be feeling and ensure that anything that has gone undiagnosed can be treated properly.
Being able to gain control over your mental health can be very freeing.
Once you finish our addiction treatment, we also offer aftercare so that you can continue with your growth and development. Our goal is to provide drug treatment in Oklahoma that is approachable and long-lasting.
We know that the temptation to use drugs is widespread throughout Oklahoma and want to ensure that everyone has the best shot possible at having a life that is drug and alcohol-free. The first step to getting the help you need is to contact us today to get started on your journey to recovery.