How to Recognize that You Are Not Defined by Your Diagnosis

Although many people know that the initial decision to use drugs is most often voluntary, drug addiction is a disease of the brain that compels people to become so obsessed with obtaining and abusing a drug of choice that, despite the many adverse health issues and life consequences people will incur, addicts will continue using drugs until forced to change. In other words, drug use begins as a voluntary act, but drug addiction is a disease of the brain that creates a singular goal of maintaining drug abuse habits. The effects of cocaine hit after the high, but its powerful effects negatively affect the heart, brain and emotions. Typically, many cocaine users fall prey to addiction, so they suffer from both long-term and life-threatening consequences rather quickly. Unfortunately, many people avoid treatment, because they do not want to be called addicts, because they fear the judgment that accompanies the label. However, with the proper mindset, any cocaine addict can realize that she is more than her diagnosis.

No One Is Defined by a Diagnosis

According to the American Society of Addiction Medicine, addiction is a chronic brain disorder, so it is completely based off someone behavior problem or the result of poor choices. Addiction has been compared to other long-term or chronic diseases, such as diabetes or cardiovascular disease, where treatment and constant monitoring has to be maintained throughout the individual’s life for him to recover well. You can break free from the label of addiction if you take the following measures:

  • Seek adequate treatment
  • Maintain health, both physically and mentally
  • Reintegrate into society

Addicts often become consumed by the thought that they are and will forever be addicts, which means they have fallen victim to the stigmas that society places on addicts and addiction. Because of this mindset, addicts often become stuck in a phase where they no longer see their future, so they live day to day while maintaining their addictions. Some of these people may seek treatment, but others will continue down this road of drug abuse, because they see no way out. However, for those who do seek treatment, they are taking the first step toward breaking the definition of their diagnosis: they are seeking professional help and they will receive the tools and knowledge they need to stay clean while they also learn coping skills to prevent relapse. Learning to live after being diagnosed with a disease can be difficult at times, but no addict should believe that her diagnosis controls her life, even though she will have to prepare herself to control her disease fully.

When struggling with any chronic disease, keeping healthy both physically and mentally is vital to success. Understand your limits physically to keep yourself safe and to avoid injury. For recovering addicts, an injury where medication is used could cause them relapse, especially if they do not take proper precautions with the drug. Professional and personal support from counselors and loved ones can help recovering addicts voice their concerns, receive feedback and release any stress they struggle with, which means they have much better chances of staying clean for the long haul. Having this support system can make all the difference in preventing relapse and keeping a recovering addict on course to maintaining sobriety.

One of the most difficult tasks that a recovering addict will undergo, especially if he is in the same town where he lived as an addict, is reintegrating himself into society. This step, although crucial, greatly depends upon him keeping his diagnosis from defining him. Recovering addicts often feel pressure from society to exceed boundaries, but they set themselves up for failure in trying to do so, because recovery should be a slow process. In response to this thought, take time to build your self-confidence and self-esteem. Volunteering or seeking employment with a trustworthy employer can be the first step you take after rehab ends, or you might want to begin repairing relationships that you damaged while in your active addiction. It is important to understand that, although a recovering addict has changed and is improving his life, not everyone will be open to being involved. Family and loved ones may find this mindset difficult at times, but recovery is worth the effort.

Initially, it can be difficult to avoid focusing on the diagnosis, or it may take time for the reality of the situation to set in. How you handle your condition makes the difference between going through the motions of life and living fully in recovery.

Cocaine Addiction Treatment

If you or a loved one struggles with cocaine addiction and feels trapped by her diagnosis, then please call our toll-free helpline today. Our admissions coordinators are available 24 hours a day to answer your questions and to help you find the best treatment available. One call can have a tremendous effect on your life, so call now to begin your recovery as soon as possible!

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