Thousands of Hoosiers are deeply affected by addiction every day. Family, friends and co-workers may be heartbroken by this illness. Whether a person is addicted to alcohol, prescription medication, tobacco, marijuana, illegal drugs or gambling, the result is the same. People become less and less happy with more and more attempts to regain the artificial pleasure produced by the substance, thought or behavior. As a person continues to try to regain that initial experience, the chemicals trick the body into imitating naturally occurring brain processes that allow our minds and bodies to work. Addiction is actually caused by the human body’s ability to adapt to the presence of these substances and still continue to function.
Addiction is NOT taking or doing anything. Addiction is the inability to stop and not start again despite consequences. Addiction may be the only illness, the result of another mental illness or co-occur with a mental illness. Regardless of cause and effect, people can and do recover, and regain lives of joy and purpose.
Recovery from addiction is the return of that ability to stop and stay stopped.