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Drug addiction is like a plane switched to autopilot – and flying full speed straight up into the sky.

Someone may be in the pilot’s seat, but they are no longer in control. The transport is going straight for the high – despite the damage to the body and the imminent fall – because that’s what it was reconfigured to do.

Sovereign Health of Arizona stands as air traffic control for women trapped in peril. We use holistic trauma-informed care to guide women through the turbulence of releasing addiction and getting them safely grounded.

Addiction Is More Than The Physical

Addiction goes beyond substance abuse. Alcohol, prescription or illegal drugs become necessary just to get going every day: interacting with people, working or performing normal tasks. The majority of substances reconfigure brain systems and without intervention can lead to irreparable or fatal damages.

Stigma fuels society in perceiving one addicted as flawed, weak or having a wild streak. When in fact, evidence-based findings demonstrate addiction is a brain disease either:

  • Manifested from a genetic predisposition
  • To cope with trauma, however counterintuitive
  • Co-morbidly occurring in tandem with a mental disorder

Addiction can be to any substance, with a labyrinth of respective symptoms and causes. Substances vary in how they impact the brain, control behavior and commandeer lives.

Alcohol Addiction And The Body

Think of alcohol addiction like poisonous contacts. The individual may not be able to see to drive or work without them but with the contacts their view is warped and the person just becomes accustomed to the distortion.

An alcoholic’s dependence is not just psychological – their very cells accustom to large volumes of alcohol because it provides a source of energy and alcohol tolerance is high. But at a cost.

Signs Of Alcohol Addiction

  • Continued drinking without control
  • Drinking more to get the same effect
  • Drinking in the morning, often drunk for long periods of time, or drinking alone
  • Giving up other activities to drink
  • Making excuses for drinking or hiding your drinking, such as buying alcohol at different stores and swapping containers
  • Physical signs of alcohol dependence: weight loss, a sore or upset stomach or redness of the nose and cheeks
  • Resuming drinking despite it causing relationship and health problems
  • Spending a lot of time drinking and recovering
  • Worrying there’s not enough alcohol for an evening or weekend

At the same time alcohol starts to attack cell structures which leads to organ deterioration. If a drinker suddenly interrupts the volume or frequency of use, the body system starts to glitch – thereby producing withdrawal symptoms.

Withdrawal Symptoms Of Alcoholism

Any of the following withdrawal symptoms can occur 4–12 hours after a skipped drink:

  • Anxiety
  • Nausea
  • Sweating
  • Shakiness

Drug Addiction And The Body

Addictive substances are constantly evolving, which makes them difficult to federally prohibit; in fact many legal prescription, over-the-counter and household products are being misused and abused. A drug user will choose which substance they abuse based on the effect they are looking for. Some of the different effects of drugs include:

  • Opiates and the like stop the brain from communicating some types of pain.
  • Marijuana, anti-anxiety and sedative drugs induce calm. Many who become addicted grow to exclusively rely on the external interference over self-directed regulation.
  • Illegal drugs such as club drugs, cocaine and methamphetamines flood the brain’s communication system with euphoric sensations due to an overabundance primarily of dopamine. These cause addiction as the flash flood of excitement renders natural sources of stimulation void. Sex, the maternal bond, enjoyable foods or hobbies no longer provide the same contentment.
  • Hallucinogens are used both for the brain alterations and the escapist disassociation.

Additionally, the way in which people are feeding their addictions is continuing to shapeshift. Most people addicted to prescription pain drugs are also trying to quell emotional pain – albeit temporarily.

The problem is that once dependency has replaced the body’s automatic regulation, a user now needs uppers to function and downers to sleep at increasingly higher doses. Trying to regulate the body’s internal system with drugs will create lasting damage.

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Signs Of Drug Addiction

  • A need to use a drug daily
  • Drug paraphernalia or makeshift accessories
  • Failed attempts to stop using the drug
  • Jitteriness or marked lethargy
  • Lying, stealing and manipulating to fund the habit
  • Memory problems
  • Needing the drug to function or deal with problems
  • Secrecy
  • Severe mood swings
  • Significant weight loss and apparent aesthetic “withering”

Similar to alcoholism, the body system becomes dependent on the drugs and sudden gaps in use present uncomfortable and even debilitating withdrawal symptoms.

For more information on specific drug withdrawal symptoms, follow the links below:

  • Bath Salts
  • Cocaine
  • Ecstasy
  • Fentanyl
  • Heroin
  • Hydrocodone
  • Ketamine
  • LSD
  • Marijuana
  • MDMA
  • Methamphetamine
  • Opioids
  • Oxycodone
  • PCP
  • Prescription Drugs
  • Salvia
  • Spice/K2
  • Steroids
  • Valium
  • Vicodin
  • Xanax

Sovereign Health of Arizona is a comfortingly holistic and nurturing treatment provider tucked away in the peaceful plains of Chandler, Arizona. We specialize in customized trauma-informed care for women who have substance abuse, mental disorder or combination conditions.

For more information about addiction treatment at Sovereign Health of Arizona, please call our 24/7 helpline.

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