Addiction is a serious medical condition that shouldn't be ignored. If you are addicted to drugs or alcohol, it is important that you get help as soon as possible. The earlier you combat the problem the more likely you are to have success. Here are some things you need to know about addiction and your recovery.

1. Addiction Changes The Brain

It is important to understand that your addiction can actually change your brain. Use of a substance, or even certain behaviors, will rewire your brain over time so that the behavior is all that you think about, making it harder and harder to find relief. It is important to recognize that addiction will hijack your brain, so that even though you might desire to get better, your brain is essentially working against you, making it harder and harder to beat. 

Acknowledging the severity of your addiction and what it actually does to your brain can help you to get the help you need. Don't assume that you can beat this on your own; you may need professional help.

2. Be Realistic About Your Progress

It is not realistic to assume that you will decide one day to never take another drink and then be completely sober. Although this would be fantastic, it is important to know that with an addiction there will be setbacks and that is okay. If you have unrealistic expectations you could easily become discouraged when a setback happens. Feeling like a failure is not helpful to your recovery, it can take away hope and without hope, you will have a hard time reaching your goals. For this reason, be patient with yourself. When setbacks happen, assess the reason, vow not to let it happen again and move forward once more.

3. Find A Good Support Group

Friends, family and sponsors will be one of the most important aspects of your recovery. If you don't have a cheer section, you will easily become discouraged and lose hope. In addition, having a sponsor who can check in on you regularly and help you through the triggers will be very helpful. Sponsors are usually addicts who have been in recovery for long periods of time and now how to help others.

By understanding your addiction and how to find real recovery, you can get the help you need and live the life you want free of addiction. Visit Pacific Ridge for more information.