If a great many people experience rehab as a revolving door of addiction treatment and relapse, often, the reason is that they do not truly grasp that there are two types of addiction. Addiction appears in both forms in most people. Since one of these types of addiction tends to be harder to treat than the other, however, it is often overlooked. Gaining awareness of the 2 types of drug addiction before starting with treatment can help in the search for the right kind of rehab treatment.
All dependence on drugs or alcohol begins on a psychological level. With most types of substance abuse, psychological dependence is the first type of addiction to show up. When abuse carries on over time, however, physical dependence tends to appear, as well.
When you feel ordinary, everyday pleasure through enjoyable activities, the pleasure comes through the actions of the brain's reward and learning center.
Pleasure comes about through beneficial actions that aid in survival. This part of the brain is responsible for creating feelings of pleasure, and reacts to stimuli such as loving relationships, or the learning of survival skills. The reward center, however, both reacts to these stimuli with pleasure, and habit learning. Beneficial actions that create pleasure also create feelings of deep love, loyalty and attachment.
When you take a drug or alcohol, the pleasurable effects involved come about because these substances are able to behave very much like some of the natural signaling chemicals in the brain that stimulate the reward center. The result is, that the brain both experiences pleasure and deep attachment to drugs. Drugs, then, become an area of psychological dependence.
Unfortunately, when an attempt is made to quit drugs, the mind reacts with panic and defensiveness, and throws up powerful cravings to attempt the addict to see seek drugs again. Psychological dependence is the most powerful part of any addiction, because there is no natural end to something that is a part of the psyche. Psychological addiction is for life unless one turns to painstaking rehabilitation and relapse prevention therapy.
As the brain faces a constant barrage of drugs that attempt to alter the behavior of the learning and reward center, it steps up with measures to defend itself. The brain's defense is a mechanism known as tolerance. As drugs come in, the brain steps in to stop the reward center from creating feelings of pleasure.
Tolerance has a predictable effect on those who abuse drugs -- when they notice that their drug of choice no longer gives them pleasure, they simple simply take more. The brain can raise its tolerance to meet such increases of intake up to a point. Tolerance has its limits; when the brain's tolerance defenses are overwhelmed by very high doses of drug, it simply stops intervening. The brain simply begins to adapt to the presence of drugs, rather than to attempt to fight it.
When the brain's own can native control systems become dormant, it fully depends on the presence of drugs to stimulate and otherwise control the reward and learning center. This becomes a problem, however, when the addict attempts to stop taking drugs. When the drugs stopped coming, the brain neither has drugs to control the reward and learning center, nor its own systems.
While the brain certainly does attempt to restart control, it's a process that can take the days. During this time, the brain experiences a severe chemical imbalance that results in painful, life-threatening symptoms.
While psychological dependence is lifelong, physical dependence only lasts days. Both require treatment, however. Physical treatment comes first, in the form of medical detox. Qualified addiction specialists treat the patient with medications to ensure freedom from pain and freedom from life-threatening systems. Once the process completes in 90 days, intensive rehab takes over to help the patient fight psychological addiction.
Many rehabs will attempt to treat patients for physical dependence alone. They will often not attempt to help patients with psychological dependence, because the process tends to be much more challenging and to require greater expertise. It's important to continue to accept therapy for psychological addiction as well, however. Without such therapy, recovering addicts invariably relapse -- they return to addiction.
If you would like to investigate treatment that addresses the 2 types of drug addiction, it may take a little effort to find the right kind of rehab. If you would like to speak to a qualified rehab counselor about finding the best rehab, try calling 859.309.6774. You'll have reliable advice in no time.