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When addiction takes hold of a person’s life, all bets regarding the future are off. Most people have witnessed the extraordinary power substances have on some people’s life, whether it be first-hand experience or the struggles of a loved one. If you fall into the latter camp, it is likely that you have found yourself perplexed about the disease. You’ve probably asked yourself, ‘why can’t my loved one—son, daughter, mother, father, husband, or wife— stop? Why does the pull of drugs and alcohol take precedence over everything else in my loved one’s life?’ The questions can go on and on, and it’s hard for the majority of people to grasp the inner-workings of addiction without help.

Addiction, not unlike any mental health condition, is complicated in nearly every way. While it is too challenging to conceptualize the symptoms of addiction, grasping the mechanisms at play beneath the surface is a monumental challenge. Researchers who’ve dedicated their lives to discovering breakthroughs in the field of addiction medicine still have more questions than they do answers.

Fortunately, with each passing year, our collective understanding of the disease grows in both scale and scope. In the arena of addiction treatment, we owe much of our success today in helping others to the evidence-based therapeutic practices that scientific discoveries have helped guide. What’s more, research tells us too that the damage caused by continued substance use and abuse can be reversed following intervention and through working a program of long-term recovery.


A Clearer Picture of Addiction

addictionEven though we have a better understanding of the nature of addiction than ever, many people are not privy to such knowledge. Misconceptions and half-truths about the illness are aplenty. It is vital, as we approach the end of the second decade of unprecedented opioid use in America, to help people gather a more concise understanding of the disease. In doing so, more people will be encouraged to disregard shame and guilt, and seek assistance.

On July 16, 2018, the Addiction Policy Forum, a partnership of addiction awareness advocates, debuted a new cartoon series that centers on the science of addiction and recovery. The first episode, “The Hijacker,” focuses on how addiction changes brain function. The second edition, “Whirlpools of Risk,” looks at the risk factors for developing substance use disorder.

Please take a moment to watch the short installments below:

If you are having trouble watching, please click here.

If you are having trouble watching, please click here.

“Most people don’t know that addiction has levels of severity, like stages of cancer,” the group’s president, Jessica Hulsey Nickel, tells The Chicago Tribune. “You don’t wait for an amputation before you treat someone with diabetes. We should not be waiting for that rock bottom, the worst thing that could happen, for someone to get the treatment, the help they need, for addiction.”


Substance Use Disorder Treatment

Hope By The Sea relies on evidence-based therapies to help men and women recover from alcohol and substance use disorders. Please contact us as soon as possible to learn more about how we can help make addiction recovery your future.