Why Is It So Hard To Stop Drug Abuse?
Many people fall victim to drug and alcohol addiction after their continued use. Once addicted, it can be tough for them to stop drug use because of the physical and psychological effects it has on the human body and brain.
The way alcohol and drugs alter the brain is that they affect the production of neurotransmitters in the brain, which are responsible for various emotions such as pleasure, happiness, and mood. The brain uses neurotransmitters such as dopamine, serotonin, and noradrenaline to send messages throughout the body. The drugs increase or decrease the production of these neurotransmitters, which, in turn, helps you achieve the ‘high’ feeling of euphoria. This increases the drive of retaking the drug to keep achieving that enjoyable feeling.
With this artificial increase or decrease in neurotransmitters, the brain adjusts accordingly by increasing or reducing their natural production. The brain and body adapt to this new normal and develop a tolerance for the drugs. When you try to quit drug use, the body reacts to the sudden change of neurotransmitters, and you experience withdrawal symptoms that can be physical, psychological, or both. To avoid these unpleasant withdrawal symptoms, people continue taking drugs or alcohol, and this is what makes it very hard to stop taking drugs and prevent relapse.
What Are The Hardest Drugs To Quit?
When it comes to stopping drug use, whatever drug one is addicted to can be challenging to quit. However, certain drugs can be considered the hardest to quit based on how they affect the brain, and the feelings users experience during their abuse. These drugs usually affect the production and absorption of the neurotransmitter dopamine. Dopamine is responsible for the sense of pleasure while also changing the willpower, mood regulation, and memory of the user. With continued use, the body becomes dependent on these drugs, which further makes it difficult for them to quit.
Some of the hardest addictions to quit are listed below:
- Cocaine – is a powerful stimulant drug that is usually snorted, smoked, or injected. It acts rather fast and provides users with the experience of intense pleasure, excitement, and alertness. Its withdrawal symptoms include irritability, restlessness, depression, anxiety, as well as suicidal thoughts and actions.
- Heroin – is an illegal opioid drug that is also snorted, smoked, or injected. It provides a feeling of high for the users that encourages them to continue taking the drug. Upon withdrawal, it results in shakes, chills, muscle aches, nausea, and other symptoms.
- Prescription Opioids – prescription opioids include Vicodin, Oxycodone, Fentanyl, Morphine, and others. Apart from the rush of pleasure, opioids also result in pain relief and muscle relaxation. Its withdrawal symptoms include chills, shakes, depression, irritation, and lack of mental clarity.
- Methamphetamine – it is abused in its powder or crystal form (crystal meth) by smoking, snorting, or injecting. It results in a powerful feeling of high but is also accompanied by psychosis, aggression, and violence. It causes depression, anxiety, and psychosis as withdrawal symptoms.
- Benzodiazepines – these include prescription sedatives such as Valium, Ativan, Xanax, and other drugs. It provides users with relaxation, better sleep, and lowering anxiety levels. When users try to stop their abuse, they may experience severe symptoms such as hallucinations, seizures, and sensory sensitivity.
- Nicotine – is the main ingredient in cigarettes and creates an enhanced mood for the users within seconds of inhaling it. Its withdrawal symptoms include irritability, anxiety, concentration difficulties, and powerful cravings to retake it.
- Alcohol – this is one of the most commonly abused substances whose withdrawal can cause symptoms such as headaches, insomnia, dizziness, depression, nausea, and some severe symptoms.
What Is The Most Successful Way To Stop Doing Drugs?
How to quit drugs? Anyone who wants to quit addiction to drugs or alcohol should enroll in a professional addiction treatment program at a rehabilitation center. These treatment programs comprise different sub-programs in different settings to enable users with a wide range of recovery options. These include inpatient residential treatment programs, outpatient treatment programs, and other therapies and treatment modalities. Seek best rehab centers in your area with the help of this locator tool made by Addiction Resource or any other analogs you prefer.
All these programs utilize:
- evidence-based treatment options and therapies,
- cognitive behavioral therapy,
- dialectical behavioral therapy,
- eye movement desensitization and reprocessing (EMDR),
- art therapy,
- music therapy,
- equine therapy,
- 12-step programs,
as well as other holistic treatment options.
All these therapies are offered in a safe and supervised environment that is conducive to healing. Therefore, users who find it very hard to quit drugs on their own are provided with an environment that helps them overcome addiction and stay sober through continued aftercare support and meetings. Based on this study about the key to addiction treatment success, comprehensive assessment, and monitoring of symptoms and behavioral change are necessary that can only be made possible in a professional rehabilitation center or program.