When most people hear the word "Drug addiction" they become more judgmental and unfair than ever. Sadly but commonly, most people erroneously think that drug addiction is a matter of choice or the decadence in the morals of the users.
However, none of these or any other notions you have is true. The chemistry of addictions (drug, alcohol, gambling, sex, and co.) is far complex and variant than anything we think we know. Not only illicit drugs like speed, ice, alcohol, cannabis, cocaine, GHB, hallucinogens, heroin, MDMA, and ketamine cause addictions. Common pharmaceuticals like analgesics, sleeping pills, and other strong medicines can cause addiction if misused.
No matter the drugs, or the act, the point is that addiction affects the brain is little imperceptible forms, and then goes on to serve as the "reward centre" of the brain. This way, it becomes more "reasonable" for the individual to get some more and all the more difficult to quit. Addiction transcends age, sex, colour, height, or any other thing. It also has more gripping effects on teenagers because their brains are not fully developed."
Many people who are challenged by addiction also experience a dual diagnosis.
When you have a friend, buddy or family member who is battling an addiction (drugs esp.) the best and responsible thing you can do is to be THERE for the person.
Signs that a person has become an addict
Addiction can manifest in many forms, but the quickest to detect are the changes in physical look and behaviours. Some of them may include;
Such a person may lose/gain weight drastically (though weight loss is common)
Always feel anxious, restless, angry, grumpy, irrational and co. And can have dreamy looks at other times.
Behave recklessly and injuriously like driving under the influence, carelessly sharing sharp objects, and co.
Seems to always be in financial difficulties no matter their income; stemming from the use of drugs
Lie about locations, lifestyles, friends, and other things
Finds quitting difficult
Have personal, corporate, and similar relationship troubles.
While experiencing just a few of these symptoms may not mean addiction, it is worth a closer look. Also, many environmental, societal and genetic factors all contribute to an individual becoming addicted to drugs.
How to help a drug addict
The first and important thing you should know is that blames, ostracism, bias and other smug treatments are very counter-productive. If anything, it even drives them further towards being miserable and "escapes" in the drug.
Withdrawing from drugs is very cataclysmic to the individual, it brings more physical, mental and emotional setbacks than you can ever imagine. Some cases can even lead to death. Seeking medical means to purge the body of the drugs is the first and important step.
Whether it's in/out-patient form of rehab, the individual has to undergo psychological purging and re-orientation through rehab. Here, they also empower the patient on how best to avoid relapses, lead healthy lives, and interact well with the community.
A life free from addiction
It is the height of insensitivity and ignorance to think addiction is a hopeless case. Once the will and courage are there to fight it, the individual can be sober again.
However, in all these, the support of true family and friends will have to be real, enduring, and stronger than ever.