Alcoholism and addiction are generally spoken of as two different things. The differences, however, had more to do with social factors rather than the disease of addiction. When looking at the reasons why a person develops alcoholism and addiction, there are virtually no differences. Historically, the first recovery programs were designed for the treatment of alcoholism. This is only because, at the time, drug addiction had yet to become the epidemic that we see now. One of the first successful recovery programs designed to help treat alcoholism was Alcoholics Anonymous. A.A. was the first 12-step program, and helped many men and women struggling with alcoholism achieve sobriety through the development and maintenance of a spiritual program of action. However, many of men and women in A.A. struggled with drug addiction as well as alcoholism and found that the 12-step program was effective in treating both ailments. In fact, even in the Big Book of Alcoholics Anonymous, a recovering alcoholic and doctor describes being addicted to intravenous drugs: “For the leveling-off process, I just loved intravenous Demerol, but I found it hard to practice good medicine while shooting morphine.” If a program designed to treat alcoholism also works at treating drug addiction, there are certainly no major differences in the two in relation to their ability to be treated. According to Addict Science: A Sober Addict’s Guide to the Science of Addiction and Recovery, “All addictive drugs share the same essential experience: a high brought on by spiking dopamine in the brain’s Reward System. So, while there are some differences between alcoholism and drug addiction — some drugs like alcohol and prescription drugs are legal while others are not; intravenous drug abusers use syringes, while alcoholics don’t — all addictions have much more in common than ways they differ.” Alcohol is a drug, and the differences between alcohol and heroin are no greater or less than the differences between heroin and any other class of drug. While some treatment aspects, such as detox, need to be individualized to address the physical dependence to a specific substance, all people struggling with the disease of addiction have the ability to recover, whether their problem was alcohol or drugs.
Alcoholism and drug addiction do not have to be a part of your story. You have the power to change your story and build toward a brighter future. Oceanfront Recovery, a men’s treatment facility in Orange County, California, offers individualized treatment programs to give you the best chance of achieving permanent sobriety. For more information about treatment options, please call today: (877) 279-1777