Even now, many people assume that drug addiction is caused by a failure of willpower or by weak character. But the medical community now recognizes that addiction is a brain disease, not a character flaw. The repeated use of drugs like heroin, cocaine, meth, or prescription opiates causes profound changes in the structure and function of the brain. These substances interfere with the way your brain processes and responds to neurotransmitters, chemicals that control emotion, energy levels, pain response, judgment, sleep patterns, and metabolism.


Most drugs affect the brain's "reward circuit," causing euphoria as well as flooding it with the chemical messenger dopamine. A properly functioning reward system motivates a person to repeat behaviors needed to thrive, such as eating and spending time with loved ones. Surges of dopamine in the reward circuit cause the reinforcement of pleasurable but unhealthy behaviors like taking drugs, leading people to repeat the behavior again and again. A One Hour Journey Through the 12 Steps with Tommy Rosen
At Priory, we recognise that without appropriate treatment, alcohol addiction can result in a whole host of long-term physical and psychological problems, and can even be fatal. However, it’s important to understand that you don’t’ have to struggle alone; alcohol addiction is treatable and our medically trained, expert addiction treatment team, consisting of psychiatrists, psychologists and therapists, are able to offer comprehensive and personalised alcohol addiction treatment at our specialist hospitals and wellbeing centres.
These effects of drug abuse have serious consequences, like missed work, punishable offenses, accidents and injuries. In fact, alcohol and drugs are partly to blame in an estimated 80 percent of offenses leading to jail time in the U.S. These incidents include domestic violence, driving while intoxicated and offenses related to damaged property. Legal and illegal drugs excluding alcohol are involved in about 16 percent of motor vehicle crashes. In the past year, almost 12 million people drove under the influence of illicit drugs, and almost 4,000 fatally injured drivers tested positive for drug involvement.

One of the major benefits of limiting our enrolment is having the space for flexibility and individuality a larger institution can never accommodate. While our addiction treatment program is primarily focused on evidence-based psychotherapy, we are open and able to integrate into this whichever alternative therapies appeal to each resident. Our goal is to provide each of our residents with precisely the right combination of Psychological, Medical, Pharmaceutical, Nutritional, Alternative and Spiritual practices that will bring each of them their recovery. We pride ourselves in our ability to work with each resident closely, and offer him or her the care, support and treatment they need with compassion and dignity.

Important: This is general medical information, and is not tailored to the needs of a specific individual. This material is NOT complete. It does not cover all possible precautions, side effects, or interactions. You should always consult your physician when making decisions about your health. And you should consult your physician before starting or stopping medication.
Cognitive–Behavioral Therapy can take place one-on-one with a therapist or in small groups. This form of therapy is focused on identifying the feelings and situations (called “cues”) that lead to heavy drinking and managing stress that can lead to relapse. The goal is to change the thought processes that lead to excessive drinking and to develop the skills necessary to cope with everyday situations that might trigger problem drinking.
Founded in 1967 by 6 heroin addicts trying to stay clean, this nonprofit organization now has 11 treatment centers across the nation and over 120 specialized programs with a focus on holistic treatment. Phoenix House has grown into a program supported by a complete staff of addiction specialists. This treatment center follows the understanding that addiction is a chronic illness, requiring ongoing support and management just like any other chronic illness. It is one of the best treatment centers on the more affordable side of the spectrum.
Rock Solid Recovery (men’s rehab) and its sister center, Sure Haven (women’s rehab), are highly rated, intimate treatment facilities. Treatment is based on a holistic, 12-step approach. Each facility has its own complete, multidisciplinary treatment staff, allowing patients to receive the best individualized care possible. The facilities offer inpatient treatment programs ranging from 30 days to 90 days, depending on patient needs. The primary benefit of these treatment centers is their small size. The men’s facility supports 6 patients and the women’s supports 13. This allows for the specialized, highly successful treatment that these facilities are known for.
“Residential rehab” and “inpatient rehab” are two phrases often used interchangeably, as they both follow medical detox, and accommodate the physical and psychological needs of individuals in recovery. They also both involve full-time treatment at a rehab facility, allowing for 24-hour monitoring. However, one major difference between the two forms of treatment is the length of the program.

For example: As a result of heavy traffic, a recovering alcoholic may decide one afternoon to exit the highway and travel on side roads. This will result in the creation of a high-risk situation when he realizes he is inadvertently driving by his old favorite bar. If this individual is able to employ successful coping strategies, such as distracting himself from his cravings by turning on his favorite music, then he will avoid the relapse risk (PATH 1) and heighten his efficacy for future abstinence. If, however, he lacks coping mechanisms—for instance, he may begin ruminating on his cravings (PATH 2)—then his efficacy for abstinence will decrease, his expectations of positive outcomes will increase, and he may experience a lapse—an isolated return to substance intoxication. So doing results in what Marlatt refers to as the Abstinence Violation Effect, characterized by guilt for having gotten intoxicated and low efficacy for future abstinence in similar tempting situations. This is a dangerous pathway, Marlatt proposes, to full-blown relapse.
Ever since drug addiction first emerged as a recognised medical condition, a huge number and variety of different treatment methods have emerged. Some of these are medically approved, tried and tested; others are of extremely dubious efficacy, and can even be extremely dangerous to those going through them. It is absolutely vital that if you are an addict seeking help for your condition you do not embark on any course of treatment that is not medically approved; always consult your GP and/or an addiction specialist before beginning any treatment.

The methamphetamine binge is followed by a phase called “tweaking,” a state characterized by restlessness, anxiety, paranoia, agitation, sleeplessness, and intense cravings. “Tweakers” may experience delusional thinking, psychotic episodes, hallucinations, and violent impulses. Severe itching and the urge to harm oneself are common at this point. Methamphetamine withdrawal is complicated by the fact that many heavy users are malnourished, dehydrated, and sleep deprived. Meth-induced psychosis can continue for weeks or months after the addict stops using. In a case study published in the Journal of Clinical Psychiatry, one methamphetamine addict continued to have auditory hallucinations, fears of persecution, and paranoid delusions for a year after treatment. A rehab jail for heroin addicts
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