There are no exact factors that determines who becomes addicted to alcohol or to other drugs, or whether a person progresses through the stages of addiction. Some people likely believe that they have a basic understanding of addiction to alcohol and other drugs, but that they do not have an understanding of the stages of addiction.
Did you know that there are stages of addiction? The caring, professional treatment staff at Oceanfront Recovery recognizes the stages of addiction and helps people that seek addiction treatment. The treatment team provides comprehensive services no matter which stage they are at when they arrive. The treatment team helps you understand the stages of addiction, how they affect you, and how to start on the road to recovery.
What are the Stages of Addiction?
Try to research the stages associated with addiction, and you likely end up confused at the results of your search. Some sources describe the stages of alcohol addiction or addiction to other drugs completely different from reputable sources, backed by research. While some sources claim that there are as many as five stages of addiction, other sources, including the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism (NIAAA), explain that there are three recognized stages of addiction.
The recognized stages include:
- Binge drinking or using and intoxication
- Withdrawal or negative affect stage
- The preoccupation and anticipation or craving stage
Some sources mistakenly mention symptoms of addiction to alcohol or other drugs as stages of addiction. Examples include the fact that some site contributors consider ‘problem drinking’ or signs of drug abuse as addiction stages.
What are the Effects?
Each of the three generally accepted stages to addiction have components that helps demonstrate the behaviors and actions that a person exhibits while going through each stage that leads to addiction. A Psychology Today contributor reveals that all of the three stages occur, no matter whether the person drinks alcohol, uses opioids, stimulants, or marijuana.
Do you abuse other drugs? The three stages apply to addiction, no matter what substance is your drug of choice.
The pleasurable feelings that you experience when you use drugs results in the desire to use more often and to use larger amounts of the illicit substance. When you continually increase the amount of alcohol that you drink, or the drugs that you use, or increase the frequency that you engage in substance abuse, the greater amounts of changes occur in your brain.
When you do not have the drug or the alcohol, you experience the withdrawal and negative effects stage of addiction. You no longer simply ‘want’ the drug or alcohol. Now you ‘need’ the drugs.
The exaggerated motivations for using alcohol or other drugs is part of the cravings or the preoccupation-anticipation stage. You lose behavioral control over the drug seeking and the drug use as you go through each of these stages. Researchers determined that all of the stages result in neurobiological changes in the structure and function of certain systems of the brain.
Can I Get Treatment at any Stage of Addiction?
Oceanfront Recovery welcomes clients into treatment at every one of the stages of addiction. The experienced treatment team meets you where you are right now. They can help you get back on the right path in life. Some people need residential treatment, while other individuals need an intensive outpatient program. There are a variety of substance abuse and mental health treatment programs that helps you or your loved one work through their individual treatment program.
Contact Oceanfront Recovery at 877.279.1777 to start your path to recovery today.