Addiction and Recovery: Unfounded Untruths and Misguided Myths

As far as the experts at are concerned, misinformation on the subject of addiction is rife across the country. Which for the most part doesn’t amount to ignorance, but more to the way in which there is so much conflicting information doing the rounds at any one time. Nevertheless, myths and misconceptions have the potential to be nothing short of harmful, both to those battling addictions and those around them.

So in order to set the record straight in just a few select areas, here’s a quick rundown of a few unfounded untruths and misguided myths on the subject of addiction and recovery:

Myth #1: Drug Addicts Have Only Themselves to Blame

First of all, while it’s common for those with drug addictions to be blamed entirely for their own decisions and lifestyle habits, it really isn’t as black and white as it appears. The reason being that while it may be down to an individual to consciously make the decision to try a drug in the first place, nobody tries a drug with the intention of becoming addicted. Instead, drugs change the way the brain functions to such an extent that spiralling into dangerous addiction is something that often cannot be prevented.

Myth #2: Drug Addicts Have Personality Flaws

Likewise, it’s commonly assumed that drug addicts have personality flaws which represent the primary catalysts for their addiction. But what this unfair presumption fails to take into account is that drug addiction is in every way, shape and form a disease of the brain. You absolutely cannot put yourself into the position of a drug addict or understand what it is they are going through, the less you yourself have gone through the same. Drug addicts did not set out to become addicted to drugs and do not wish to spend the rest of their lives dealing themselves. Just like those with other chronic diseases, they want to be treated and helped.

Myth #3: You Can Force Treatment on Drug Addicts

Unfortunately, this just isn’t the case at all. While is perfectly possible to pressure friends or family members to attend rehab or any other courses of treatment, it is fundamentally impossible for them to succeed if they do not want to make a recovery. They do not necessarily have to want to attend treatment, they simply have to want to make a difference in their lives. This often tends to be the trickiest in those that are in the early stages of drug addiction and are therefore more prone to living in a state of denial. Until they can accept and acknowledge their problems, all the treatment in the world will have no effect whatsoever.

Myth #4: If Treatment Fails, There’s No Hope

Contrary to popular belief, a quite enormous proportion of drug addiction treatment programs do not succeed the first time around.  In so many instances, those concerned find themselves falling back into old habits or relapsing, either during the treatment process itself or upon completion. And when this happens, it can be difficult not to simply assume that all hope is lost.  In reality however, addiction treatment has the potential to be even more effective the second, third or even the fourth time around. Each time there is a slip up, lessons are learned for the next attempt and the cycle continues until it proves successful.

Myth #5: Drug Addicts Should Just Stop Taking Drugs…Period

There are two distinct problems with this particular myth – both of which display a severe lack of knowledge and understanding. First of all, given the way in which the drugs they are using are affecting the way their brain works, it may be fundamentally impossible and for a drug addict to simply stop taking drugs without assistance. On top of all this, those with severe addictions may put their lives in jeopardy by attempting to go cold turkey, without the necessary treatment and assistance. So not only is simply stopping taking drugs not a realistic prospect for most addicts, it can also prove deadly for some.

Myth #6: You Only Need Counselling If You’re Already at Rock-Bottom

Last but not least, the truth of the matter in this instance is actually quite the opposite of the assumption. The reason being that with each and every type of addiction across the board, the key to the past and successful treatment lies in addressing the problem at the earliest possible stage. Rather than waiting until things hit crisis point, it instead makes sense to bring them to the attention of the professionals as early as possible. While it’s not to say that counselling and treatment services cannot work wonders with even the most advanced cases, it’s infinitely simpler and more straightforward to tackle developing cases in their early stages.