Alcohol addiction: Debunking the myth

Many people have their beliefs about alcohol addiction. However, most of these beliefs stem from a lack of experience, understanding and perhaps tolerance. So let us correct some of these common misconceptions.

Myth 1: Addiction is only a bad habit and the only reason addicts can’t quit is because they have no willpower.

At the start of drinking, perhaps it could be a voluntary decision. Consider it a much-needed respite from work, bills, relationship and all the drama. However, the more they choose to turn to it, the more dependent they become on it to relieve stress and in the end, they become addicted. This addiction happens because alcohol alters the brains and now the alcohol is in control of the addict.

Myth 2: Addicts are people with mental problems.

The statement is untrue. Addicts began as normal people who only started on one or two drinks to relieve stress. The more they seek this as an outlet, the more addicted they become. As we said in myth #1 alcohol alters the brain, creating a need in the user to be drinking all the time. This leads to bad life decisions.

Myth 3: Treatment never works. Look at how many people relapse

The public thinks, that it will be easy to quit alcohol cold turkey however it is not that easy. The rehabilitation of alcoholics or treatment for them is not a one size fit all. The programme has to be tailored to suit the needs of the alcohol addicts. Different individuals have different issues that they are dealing with and they also respond differently to various treatment.

Myth 4: The addict has to be willing to quit for treatment to be effective.

Most of the time, they do not want treatment. They only seek treatment because they were ordered by the court or they were referred by concerned family members. Wanting to quit has little effect on the effectiveness on the treatment.
Myth 5: Addicts are a lost cause once they relapse.

Getting off the addiction is easy. Staying off it is difficult. Relapsing does not mean hitting rock bottom. It could be used as a positive thing by analysing why the individual relapsed, what trigger that triggered the event and learn to avoid it next time.

These are a few of the myths of alcohol addiction. The knowledge of this alone will help you be a better friend to those in need.

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