Nobody likes to admit that they are addicted to anything, at least not at first. The steps to admitting an addiction comes almost like a predictable process. It starts with self-denial and then you finally understand through self-recognition, but you still like to deny it externally before you finally come to external admission. Chemical addiction is an artificial need you create for your body by using the chemical consistently for so long that your body defines a need for it, which is why it can be so difficult to quit. We have all learned that admitting it is the first step! Be patient and understanding if your child or loved one is dealing with a chemical dependency.
It is true that alcohol is a drug, technically known as ethanol. Alcoholics Anonymous was the first to recognize alcoholism as a disease, which is now recognized by the American Medical Association as a severe, chronic disease with no cure, although it can be effectively treated. Many alcoholics begin experiencing their recovery through treatment programs. These treatment programs help the healing process through friends and family, as well as developing skill sets in the individuals attending for success as a non-alcoholic in the future.
Nicotine is the leading factor in deaths related to chemical dependency. As with alcoholism, there are programs designed to help smokers quit, and then stay quit. You know you are addicted to nicotine if:
1. You crave or obsess over nicotine on a regular basis
2. You rationalize the use of nicotine regardless of the evidence against it
3. You place nicotine as the most important need in your life- above friends, family, career, morals, or money
4. You sneak nicotine into your routine and avoid situations throughout your day that would prohibit your ability to use nicotine
While there are a variety of drugs with different results and dangers, any of them used over a long period of time will end up in physical and psychological dependance towards the particular drug. Drugs can easily dominate the user’s life, quickly taking priority over their relationships and jobs or schooling. The first step to helping a child or loved one in this area is to be aware that they are developing an addiction to drugs, and to intervene with professional help.