Depending on their drug of choice, many addicts not only have to recover from the initial after-effects of not using their drug of choice, but they now are experiencing a broad range of other related health problems caused by so many years of using. Many addicts contract STDs, hepatitis, or severe heart problems because of their prolonged drug use. Prolonged use of these drugs has even caused many addicts to have a heart attack or stroke, yet they continued to use it. Most don’t even realize the extent of the damage they have done to their bodies until they get clean. Addicts who used these types of abusive drugs become malnourished from not eating enough. They develop tooth decay and skin irritations due to the compulsive digging and scratching of the skin. They have done permanent damage to their bodies that have changed how they look and feel about themselves. Through recovery, this can be dealt with, and addicts can begin to feel like themselves again. Acceptance plays a big part in understanding the changes that have taken place in the body of the user. Addicts must resign themselves to the fact that they may never look the way they once did. It is challenging for addicts to come to terms with this.
Often, other roadblocks to recovery for an addict that is tough to accept are those horrible things the addict may have done. Many can’t forgive themselves once their conscience is restored through the process of addiction recovery. They feel if they can’t forgive themselves, how can anyone else possibly forgive them for their wrongdoings? These feelings of inadequacy often lead addicts to relapse; go right back to “getting high.” An addict must get educated on the proper addiction information and understand that the whole process of recovery takes time. After all, it didn’t develop overnight, and it took prolonged use of the drugs they were using to enter into the disease. Just the same, recovery doesn’t happen overnight either. Patience is necessary to recover fully.
Alcoholism is by far the most common problem in this country. It affects over 20 million people in the United States alone. Over 60% of alcoholics have a history of alcoholism in their families. Unfortunately, 90% of recorded child abuse cases are the result of alcoholism. Believe it or not, alcohol is the most challenging addiction to kick. Addiction affects the body in the most detrimental ways, and it is the only actual “drug” that, if stopped, “cold turkey,” can sometimes cause the death of an alcoholic. Unfortunately, this can happen due to the severity of withdrawal symptoms and how chemically dependent the alcoholic is on alcohol. Because often taking another drink is less painful to an alcoholic than not taking one, it is harder for an alcoholic to quit independently without assistance and support. It takes carefully monitored medical treatment in a qualified alcohol addiction treatment facility to aid the alcoholic to stop drinking successfully. Otherwise, a severe alcoholic can develop hallucinations or go into convulsions or even have a seizure. These are symptoms associated with what is called delirium tremens, or DT’s.
While an alcoholic is braving the process of quitting drinking, they must be monitored for those qualified to treat various health problems associated with alcoholism. One disease is a direct result of excessive alcohol abuse, and that is cirrhosis of the liver. To catch it in time could prove to be fruitful as the liver does have the capability to regenerate proper function; however, other significant problems can occur along with it. Alcohol abuse doesn’t just compromise the liver; it can also affect the kidneys’ operation, digestive health, cause jaundice or anemia. Diabetes can further complicate the health of an alcoholic. A recovering alcoholic is strongly advised to eat well and regularly and above all else, continue not to drink.