One Long Cycle Of Addiction

One Long Cycle Of Addiction

Life isn’t easy, is it? In fact, it can be downright difficult at times.

We seem to be on a constant treadmill of working, paying bills and never having enough money – to an abundance of commitments and time constraints.


We also have to deal with good relationships, bad relationships, stress, depression, anxiety and panic – and in amongst all that we are trying to find a pleasure and a value to our lives.

This is where a need for immediate results is sought. A quick fix in this environment of “busyness” and never-ending responsibilities saves time and allows for recovery before Monday morning comes around again. Or, at least that is the plan!


Firstly, there’ll be something that knocks you off track:

You’ll be travelling along the “track of life” until suddenly the wheels come off!


You’ve been constantly rushing around, working against never-ending targets and goals, working to pay your mortgage and juggling family commitments and relationships. Maybe coping with illness and tiredness, trying to find more time, energy and motivation to cope with your day, week, month and year – until you come to the end of your rope and you need a release to continue!


There’ll be a craving for your instrument of release:

We all have one!


It could be drinking, eating, smoking cannabis or taking harder drugs such as cocaine or heroin. It could also include engaging in activities such as excessive shopping, working long hours, gambling or engaging in sexual or pornographic activities that strains relationships. All are pleasurable, all can have negative consequences – whether that’s on your health, your well-being, your finances, your relationships or even your ability to hold down a job, so what drives this urge?


Then there’s what you tell yourself to justify the addiction:

These include phrases like –
1. I’m not addicted – I can handle it – it’s not a problem!
2. You don’t know me and what I’ve had to deal with in my life.
3. I control it – it doesn’t control me
4. I deserve a blow- out – I work hard and play hard.
5. It’s nobody’s business but my own, so mind your own business
6. It’s only now and again – nothing major!
7. I’m enjoying myself – everyone else is just being boring (You only live once)
8. It’s not my fault that bad things happen to me – it’s my way of coping with life.
9. Everybody has some sort of addiction – this is mine!
10. You don’t know what you’re talking about


This leads to the scene of the crime: –


It’s so pleasurable – a total blow- out!
You’re out with your friends- getting drunk, smoking weed, snorting coke – getting “out of it” – behaving in a way that you wouldn’t normally as an employee, parent, adult child, sibling etc. You’re forgetting the “grown-up world” for a short time. The one full of problems, the responsible world that is now long forgotten whilst you reclaim your youth. Whilst you roll back the years where you had no responsibilities, no rent or mortgage to pay, no children to bring up – if only for a short time!


And then there’s a very large bump to earth
(which can include): –


1. A Hangover and ill- health (from prolonged episodes)
2. Trouble from your partner as they were worried or angry and frustrated with you.
3. Return to responsibility which may come all too soon
4. Guilt that you succumbed to the cravings
5. Guilt that you let yourself down
6. Guilt that you let everyone else down
7. Self-annoyance that you invited this judgement from others onto yourself
8. Feelings of low self – worth


Which in turn leads to a need to try harder:-

This need to “make amends” means that you are back to running around like a “headless chicken”.
You are (again) working towards the inevitability of mental and physical exhaustion which can only mean one thing – a need to release all that stress and anxiety and a return to the start of the addiction cycle. Or you could be suffering from feelings of depression and lethargy and need something to “get you going again.”
The feelings of freedom didn’t last very long, which means that you are already planning and looking forward to the next time.





Acknowledgement of how self-destructive this addiction is the first step towards changing things.


Is it an occasional habit or is it a full-blown addiction? The truth is it doesn’t really make a difference as the end result is the same due to the increasing amounts that are required to achieve the same euphoric results. In fact, that same euphoria may never be quite achieved again.


The effects are the same on your health and well-being as you are chasing a negative coping mechanism instead of looking for positive ones. The end result of a night of bingeing is known, but ignored and minimised, and will be faced (or not) at the time. All that matters is that moment of pleasure.


This is where the crucial moment of relapse lies. The knowledge of what will happen is there, but ignored, masked and denied. Instead of “I’m not going to go ahead with this activity as it’s destructive to myself and the people around me will suffer for it” it will be “I am going to go ahead with this activity because all I care about is the pleasure and release that I know it will give me.”
The choice has been made – so this is what needs to be worked on to achieve change.


Don’t beat yourself up over this:-


Everyone has a story -and everyone has inner struggles at some time or another, that is holding back their happiness and potential. Chances are you can’t tell just by looking at them, just like they may not be able to pick up on how you are feeling about your own life.


It is also possible that the thoughts you have about yourself, your achievements and your perception about what people think about you may be distorted.


Counselling can help you with this – your counsellor will unpick these incorrect thoughts and help you work through them in a positive way with a view to reducing your negative thoughts.

This, in turn, will hopefully alleviate a need to self – medicate with alcohol and drugs and move towards a happier and healthier you.


Amanda Wyatt

Nick Conn / 3rd April 2018/ Posted in: Latest News

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    Detoxification (detox) is the medical intervention required for someone who is physically dependent to drugs or alcohol. If required, medical detoxification would be the first step taken in residential rehab. Detox is used to prevent uncomfortable and dangerous (even fatal) withdrawals symptoms resulting in suddenly becoming abstinent from alcohol/certain drugs.

    The goal of a medical detox is to aid in the physical healing required following long term addiction and rid the body of all together of substance whilst providing a cushion for unpleasant symptoms of withdrawals. Detox is not considered the whole treatment for drug/alcohol addiction and it is always recommended that a comprehensive rehabilitation program is used along side to help maintain long term abstinence.

    Medication is often required for alcohol detox. If you are dependent on alcohol and experiencing withdrawal symptoms it is vitally important to seek medical advice prior to stopping. There is a long list of medications used when treating alcohol addiction and the exact medication given to an individual will depend on their needs/medical history. Some of these include;

    • Chlordiazepoxide (Librium)
    • Lorazepam (Ativan)
    • Diazapam (vailium)

    Librium and Valium are the most commonly used detox medication in the UK. All medication used to help with alcohol detox have been proven to help reduce the effects of withdrawal symptoms.

    There are also a number of drugs recombined by the NHS to help treat alcohol misuse. Some of these include:

    • Naltrexone
    • Disulfiram (Antabuse)
    • Nalmefene
    • Acamprosate (campral)

    Medication is always required for heroin detox. For someone suffering from heroin addiction, the thought of detoxification (detox) can be exceptionally daunting. Withdrawal symptoms from opiates, such as heroin, can be severe and include pain, vomiting, nausea and shaking.

    There are different ways that heroin detox can be carried out, most usually either ‘maintenance therapy’ or ‘full medical detox’.

    Attempting to switch from heroin to a heroin substitute, usually on a controlled prescription, is known as Maintenance therapy. Subsites used are most often methadone or buprenorphine.

    A full medical detox from heroin will always be carried out in a residential rehab setting and will allow the individual to switch form heroin to a substitute and slowly withdraw completing treatment free of all substances. Someone using a heroin substitute can choose to have a full medical detox at any time, however detoxing substances such a methadone can often add to the length of detox required. Drugs most commonly used to fully detox from heroin are, Subutex, Suboxone and Methadone. Much like alcohol, the exact drugs used will be dependent on the individuals needs/medical history.

    Once detoxed from heroin the risk of overdose is much higher following relapse due to tolerance following withdrawal.

    The length of treatment in a residential rehab depends on a number of elements. Some substances require longer periods of detox than others.

    Private paying patients will also often choose a length of stay that suites their therapeutic and financial needs. As a rule, a full treatment program in a rehab is considered to be 28 days (often referred to as a month), however, treatment is offered in several different ways and lengths starting at 7 days.

    Treating alcohol addiction will always require a minimum of 7-10 days, this would be considered the detoxification (detox) faze. The length required for treating drug addiction can vary drastically depending on the substance being used. Detox for Heroin addiction is generally around 14 days minimum, with more time required if substances such a methadone are being used. Treating prescription drug addiction can often take the longest. The time required for treating gambling addiction, eating disorders and sex addiction will be based on the individuals needs.

    Rehab programs can be as long as an individual requires but primary treatment is normally caped at 12 weeks, with the offering for further secondary and tertiary treatment thereafter.

    *based on average rehab stays, everyone will vary dependant on needs and medical requirement/history.

    There is no need for your employer to know that you are seeking help for trauma and addiction unless you choose to involve them with the process. All employers should have a policy that explains what you do if you cannot come to work due to illness – illness to include treating alcohol addiction/treating drug addiction.

    If your work absence extends over 7 days your employer is likely to require an official statement of fitness to work which would be obtained from your GP. This would need to supply evidence of your illness as well as any adjustments required for returning to work, fazed return or reduced hours, but does not need to specify in detail the reason why you have been absent.

    If you are absent from work for 7 days of less, for example entering rehab for a detoxification (detox) on a Saturday for 7-10 days taking a full week away from work, you can self-certify your illness by letting your employer work you will not be attending work for that period of time. Exactly how an individual would do this would be dependent on a specific companies’ policies on taking sick leave.

    Any time longer than 7 days it is likely an employer will require a note from the individuals GP certifying their sickness and a fit note on return. Most companies have a clearly outlined policy on sickness and receiving sick pay so the exact requirement can vary. A rehab will always be willing to advise on time off work.

    How much does rehab cost is a very frequently asked question. The cost of treatment can range from £1,000 per week upwards depending on the place, with luxury rehab being the most expensive.

    There are free options available on the NHS but the waitlist of those looking for free treatment is longer than that for privately paying patients. Some private health insurance policies will cover treatment in some rehabs around the country.

    Choosing the right rehab centre will often be based on priced but it is important to follow guidance on the most suitable treatment centre for an individual’s needs which our expert team of advisers are on hand to offer.

    There are certainly pro’s for both treatment near by and traveling for treatment with one of the most asked question being should I get rehab near me? There are rehabs all over the UK and around the world that all offer expert programs, let’s look at how to choose a rehab.

    Local treatment

    Being close to home gives certainly has benefits. Visitors are normally permitted in rehab following the first 7 days stay, therefore if an individual is in treatment for a length of time longer than that being local will make it easier for loved ones to visit.

    Most rehab centres will also provide a full aftercare plan for someone following treatment, this will include ongoing aftercare in the specific treatment centre. Living close by can make it easy to take full advantage of ongoing aftercare. There can also often be the option for ongoing care with an individual therapist, again being close by will allow that treatment to be carried out face to face.

    Some individuals wish to be local but are willing to look broader, for instance the greater city of residence (London, Manchester, Liverpool, etc)

    Treatment Away

    Getting treatment away from home can be very appealing to some. Being out of the local area makes it a lot harder to just walk out of treatment as resources locally are unknown. Some also take comfort in knowing that they are not near home and focus more on treatment.

    As the price for treatment can vary so much from one residential treatment centre to another, private paying patients often would rather travel to keep the cost down. Those using private health insurance may also have to travel to find a treatment centre covered in their policy.

    When opting for treatment away from home this can be anywhere in the UK and also abroad. Aftercare can still be carried out and very successful using tools such as The Online Rehab.

    There is no right or wrong when choosing where to go to residential rehab, but our expert advisors are always on hand to help provide information on all possible options.

    Whilst millions of people in the UK have taken recreational drugs (amphetamine, cannabis, cocaine, crack, crystal meth, GHB, heron, ketamine, methadone, and prescription drugs) and drank alcohol not all become ‘addicted’. Most recent reports show that 279,793 individuals were in contact with drug and alcohol misuse services in the last year with over half of that being from opiate addiction and a quarter for alcohol.

    There are several risk factors invoiced in addiction and those using drugs and alcohol socially, simply take the risk. These risks are as follows;

    Tolerance – basically, if a substance is used repeatedly an individual’s tolerance to it will build. This will result in more of the same substance being required to get the same effect. In the long run this can easily lead to addiction and physical dependencies.

    Environmental risks – these can include influences such a peer pressure and stress as well as physical or mental abuse of an individual (particularly as a child). Overall, those who live with frequent pressures and stress are more likely to reach for a substance to cope and are therefore at higher risk of becoming addicted.

    Drug type – it is very well known that certain drugs are simply more addictive than others. Using substances such as heroin increases the risk of becoming addicted for need to ‘chase’ a high as well as physical dependency.

    Drug administration – how a drug is administered can affect its addictive qualities. A drug injected rather than smoked or snorted will release a quicker and more intense high thus making it psychologically (and in many cases physically) more addictive.

    Biological factors – it is now widely reported that being an addict is not only psychological but also biological. This includes your genetic makeup, mental health, sex and age. It is also reported to be 8 times more likely for the child of an addict to become an addict themselves.

    Its believed that addiction is approximately half genetics and therefore some are 50% more likely to become addicted than others.

    How do you help a loved one trapped in addiction?

    The first step is to help and encourage the individual to become willing to accept help. They do not need to be shouting this off the rooftops, but they do need to be willing to go into treatment. There are ways to help someone become willing to get treatment for alcohol or treatment for drugs.

    Set boundaries – set boundaries and stick to them. Once you have laid them out follow through with whatever consequences you have set however hard it is.

    Stop finances – if you are financially supporting someone stopping these finances can be the quickest way for the addict needing to ask for help. With no money to acquire a substance an addict’s options become very limited.

    Intervention – getting together with other family members/friends/colleagues and staging an intervention is often very successful in the fist stage of acceptance and gaining an admission to residential rehab.

    You can’t make them quit, this can lead to dangerous withdrawal. Boundaries are very important in helping someone become willing to get help. Unfortunately you cannot do someone’s recovery for them and without self-motivation it is very hard to make it work.

    The next step is to call our highly trained advisers 0203 955 7700.

    There is a huge range of rehab options available and where to start can be completely over whelming so let us help.