While certain government agencies and officials may have put forth what they consider a standard definition of addiction, seemingly more people than ever are willing to look outside the bubble to see what works for them. Sometimes these definitions are primarily made up of observed behaviors or chemical interactions, while others may try to look at it more holistically. So what is addiction to you? Call 833.551.2304 to speak with someone from our caring and compassionate team at Gulf Breeze Recovery about the definition of addiction and our addiction treatment programs in Florida.
What Is Addiction?
The definition of addiction can be found in the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM). Clinicians use this manual to diagnose mental health disorders and generally follow the National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA) definition. NIDA calls addiction a chronic brain disease that causes compulsive drug seeking and use, despite harmful consequences. Whether or not someone adopts the theory that addiction is a brain disease, the rest of the definition seems to fit—at least mechanically.
Addiction Is Unhealthy
Medically speaking, addiction can also be defined as something that has taken control of a person’s life, leading them to do things they wouldn’t normally do or use substances or act in ways that are not healthy for them. It is an uncontrollable urge to engage in certain behaviors and activities despite knowing the risks and consequences.
Addiction Results from a Lack of Control
At its simplest definition, addiction is a pattern of behavior that has become out of control and has caused harm to the person or other people. The definition may differ for each individual, but all definitions have one constant—addiction does not discriminate. Addiction can affect anyone regardless of age, gender, race, occupation, or socio-economic status.
Addiction Results from Insecurity
In The Serenity Principle, author and Gulf Breeze Recovery consultant Joseph Bailey states that developing an addiction represents an innocent but often desperate search outside ourselves for positive feelings. Bailey also stated that there is some root insecurity as a basis for addiction.
Seeking comfort isn’t bad, but it is entirely unhealthy when people search for that security in destructive ways. We believe that people are innately healthy and that the way to overcome addiction is to dive inward to find comfort within our true selves. This recognition eliminates the desire to depend on outside sources for that comfort or security.
How Does Addiction Treatment Work?
There are many types of addictions, but people are often more familiar with substance use disorders (SUDs) like alcohol use disorder (AUD), opioid use disorder (OUD), and cocaine addiction. Addictions like these have many components and, therefore, many areas that need to be addressed mentally and physically. Most SUD treatment programs consist of the following:
- Detoxification – This is the initial stage of treatment and involves removing any addictive substances from the body.
- Counseling and therapy – This helps people to address underlying issues that may have contributed to their addiction, such as trauma or a mental health disorder.
- Support groups – These are peer support groups designed to offer encouragement and accountability to people recovering from addiction.
- Relapse prevention – This helps to provide individuals with the skills needed to avoid a relapse.
At Gulf Breeze Recovery, we understand that everyone’s definition of addiction is unique and can change over time as someone grows in their recovery journey. Our caring and compassionate team of experienced clinicians is dedicated to helping individuals achieve sobriety and find long-term recovery.
Find Substance Use Disorder Treatment in Florida at Gulf Breeze Recovery
Our definition of addiction is rooted in the understanding that it’s a disease, not a moral failing. People can develop a deeper understanding of addiction and themselves and thus navigate life with their newfound insights. More importantly, they can have the freedom to no longer suffer and create new definitions and meaning for their lives. We seek this path for our guests at Gulf Breeze Recovery—to write their own present and future without addiction anywhere in it. Contact Gulf Breeze Recovery today at 833.551.2304 to learn more.