As an Ouroboros, Life Begins at Death.

A New Definition of Drug and Alcohol Addiction and Treatment – Substance Abuse Has No Societal Boundaries

An addict is not considered an addict simply because he drinks excessively or overuses recreational drugs; nor his life spiraling downward because of alcohol or drugs. These are just predictable symptoms of the progressive disease. Perhaps if we had a new definition for addiction, it would not be so difficult for individuals to accept that they may be suffering from a disease that will eventually destroy their lives.

We have all heard that addiction is a disease, but how do we truly feel about this issue? When you hear the word “addict,” do you think of a junkie, crack addict, prostitute, or a homeless person who begs for money on a street corner? When you hear the word addict, do you think of a lowlife who has unacceptable behaviors, and low morals? Do you somehow believe that their life’s circumstances are their fault and that they could just say no?

A successful CEO, attorney, doctor, or professional with a substance abuse problem would not fall into the category of addict according to the stereotypical definition. Perhaps, this is one of the reasons why a professional with a drug problem, alcohol included, does not easily consider himself to be addicted or readily seek addiction treatment. Success in other venues tends to convince the professional that he can also handle this problem as well, especially when he compares himself to addicts who have bottomed out and have also not entered a rehab or other treatment program. If the addicted professional is still semi-functioning and hasn’t yet lost their job, house, or family, his denial system will remain relatively intact…until it no longer is.

According to the American Medical Association, in order for an illness to be classified as a disease, it must meet one of the following criteria: it must be either progressive, predictable, or terminal. Everyone knows that there are blood and urine tests to determine if drugs or alcohol are present in the body. Few of us are aware that there is a test which determines whether someone has the DNA for addiction. There is a “Y” factor in the genetic coding of alcoholics and addicts. This genetic makeup determines how the body processes and breaks down alcohol or drugs in the system. This “Y” factor distinguishes the addict from the drug abuser.

An addict born with the DNA coding, or Y factor, is similar to the person who is born with the predisposition for cancer, diabetes, or lupus. As with cancer, when certain favorable conditions exist, the diseases will activate and progress. For those with the addictive gene, once addictive chemicals are introduced into the body, the disease activates. It does not matter whether the addictive drugs are prescribed by a doctor or bought illegally.

There are exceptions to this genetic predisposition guideline. While the children of addicts will almost certainly have the addictive gene, in some instances, it may skip a generation. However, some who do not have the genetic coding for addiction will also become addicted. Why? Drugs like crack cocaine have been designed in laboratories to intentionally cross over this genetic line and become instantly addictive. Have you ever heard of a social crack cocaine smoker? This drug causes someone to bottom out at a much faster pace.

Drugs change the brain’s receptor sites. Enough drug usage can permanently alter the brain and its ability to absorb vital nutrients. Our receptor sites are similar to loading docks in the brain, sending and receiving messages continually. These messages are sent through chemicals which are moved about through electrical surges. Not only do drugs alter the chemical balance in the brain, they skew the pattern of energy pulses. But the most damaging effect of drug usage is permanent change in the cell walls, upon which other cells dock, much like how a key fits into a lock. If the lock is changed then the key won’t fit.

If you knew that you have the genetic coding for a disease, wouldn’t you do everything in your power to keep the disease from activating before the need for a drug rehab program occurs instead? If you understood that your disease was actively progressing, wouldn’t you seek some type of treatment? How can you help someone who does not yet realize that they need help? Family, friends, and co-workers are in a position to see the effects of drugs, long before the addicted has a clue.

In the realm of addiction and its progressive nature, wellness coaching emerges as a beacon of hope for those grappling with substance abuse. Much like addiction, wellness coaching acknowledges the interconnectedness of our physical and mental well-being. The concept of wellness coaching can be seamlessly integrated into the discussion, offering individuals a holistic approach to navigate the challenges posed by addiction. By addressing the progressive, predictable, and potentially terminal aspects of addiction, wellness coaching aligns with the criteria set by the American Medical Association for classifying an illness as a disease. As we consider the genetic factors contributing to addiction, wellness coaching becomes a powerful tool in empowering individuals to understand and manage their predispositions. Imagine a scenario where individuals, armed with knowledge about their genetic coding, proactively engage in wellness coaching to prevent the activation or long-term progression of addiction. This proactive approach aligns with the principles of wellness coaching, urging individuals to take charge of their well-being and seek support long before the need arises for traditional drug rehab. In this earthly fight for life, wellness coaching emerges as a vital ally, promoting self-awareness, resilience, and a proactive stance in the battle against addiction and any traumas that led to this path.

If you need help, do not be afraid or ashamed to ask for help. Don’t suffer in silence when there are many who also struggle and many who have sought help to heal. Regain your power and heal, today! Tomorrow is never guaranteed, and neither is a positive outcome in waiting one extra day. What else have you got to lose, except everything?

*If you feel you are a harm to yourself and/or anyone else, please do not hesitate to call your local emergency services. 

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