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Knowledge is a weapon in the fight against addiction

Knowledge is power. Knowledge is a weapon in the fight against addiction.

Knowledge makes you strong! You’ve heard the saying, “Ignorance is bliss” but it just isn’t true. Closer to the truth is the saying, “A devil exposed is a devil defeated.” Addiction has a voice. It says, “You are alone in the struggle. Nobody understands what you are going through. You are hopelessly hooked.” Denial of the problem or blaming everybody else just keeps us in the darkness. You must arm yourself with knowledge and truth in order to overcome these lies. This doesn’t mean a formal education (Although that is an option); it means to inform and equip yourself for the recovery journey ahead.
When it comes to other diseases like cancer or diabetes, we expect a doctor to encourage learning about our diagnosis. It is the key to making informed decisions about treatment. Shouldn’t this be just as true if not more so when it comes to the disease of addiction? The stigma related to addiction is rooted in misinformation and misunderstanding. Knowledge turns on the spot light. Example: one of the best ways to spot counterfeit money is to study the real thing; then the fake stands out. In the same way it is important to understand the truth about addiction and recovery. How does addiction work? Do people recover? What are my reasons for wanting to use, and what is my “Why” for wanting recovery? At The Recovery Center, a drug and alcohol treatment center in Athens, GA, we understand each client is a whole person, not just an addiction. Treatment focuses on education about addiction and recovery; coping skills, trauma, values, mindfulness, recognizing and managing emotions, and relationships.
Knowledge is important for those who have a loved one dealing with addiction. Many times the family doesn’t understand why the addict won’t just “get over it” and stop the destructive behavior. It’s been said that addiction is the only disease that people get yelled at for having. Often the family views the addiction as a weakness, a lack of willpower, willful stubbornness, or a character flaw. When families arm themselves with knowledge about brain chemistry and physical dependency on substances it helps them stop blaming and shaming; then healing can be the focus rather than anger and disappointment. The Athens Addiction Recovery Center offers family education utilizing the CRAFT model (Community Reinforcement and Family Training) as part of treatment.
What should I read, study, or learn? 
  • Education about medicines that perhaps have been prescribed.
  • Effects of chemicals on the brain and how it affects the body.
  • Nutrition and wellness. Many have been malnourished for a long time because of their addiction and so a good healthy diet is very important.
  • The importance of exercise in recovery. Our bodies have been abused and neglected and need to regain strength and vitality through a new healthy lifestyle that includes physical activity.
  • Social skills and relationship building (or repairing).
  • Life skills.
  • Relapse prevention and coping skills.
  • Pain management.
  • Communication skills.
Where can I go to gain knowledge and get education materials?
  • Support groups are a great way to hear the story of others in recovery. This will build confidence that you too can be successful in your journey. It reinforces that you are not alone and there is hope.
  • Family support groups are crucial to the overall health of the family unit.
  • You are reading this blog…that is a good start! Lots of resources are available in the public library about addiction and recovery. Online there are a number of tools, blogs, and educational videos.
  • There are many podcasts about addiction that can turn your daily commute into a time of discovery and learning.
Most of all you need a plan. Call right now 706-559-0059 to schedule a no-cost assessment that will result in treatment recommendations. Phones are answered 24/7 by treatment professionals trained in treatment options, financial strategies, and insurance questions.