In my opinion the disease of addiction is often misunderstood and the people who suffer from are of often mistreated by society, insurance companies, law enforcement and some professionals in the medical field.
It is critical for society to understand that addiction, is a progressive, chronic, relapsing brain disease that induces uncontrollable drug seeking use and abuse in spite of harmful and damaging consequences and if left untreated, it is deadly.
The disease of addiction is defined as a brain disease for the reason that this problem advances change in the brains function and structure. Society seems to thing that drug addiction is a choice and there is some truth to that statement, however, over the course of time the alterations in their brain, as a result of abusing drugs, alcohol over and over again, can greatly affect their self-control and capability to make logical decisions while at the exact same moment sends extreme impulses (cravings) to take drugs or drink more alcohol because their body has become dependent and the obsession of the mind has taken over.
The disease of addiction is a progressive brain disease that affects the entire family, it breaks hearts and tear families apart. It is often a self-destructive path for our loved one who thinks and or believes that they are in control when in fact their disease is controlling and lying to them while they are lying and attempting to control their parents or anyone who is close to them. The disease of addiction is baffling, cunning and powerful.
Many people who suffer from their substance use disorder (addiction) try to conceal it by minimizing their use or denying that they have a problem. Quite often they feel so much guild and shame that they continue to self-medicate. People who suffer from addiction often suffer from mental illness and not only do they fight the disease they are stigmatized by it.
There are many ways that we can help eliminate the stigma of addiction. We can educate our family and friends; We can stop keeping our secret that our loved has a substance use disorder