You are on page 1of 3

Drug Addiction and Alcoholism

How it Happens

No one wants to be a drug addict or alcoholic, but this doesn't stop people from getting
addicted. The most commonly asked question is simply - how? How could my son, daughter,
father, sister, or brother become a liar, a thief, someone who cannot be trusted? How could this
happen? And why won't they stop?

Drug Addiction At Its Roots

The first thing you must understand about addiction is that mind-altering drugs are
basically painkillers. For drugs to be attractive to a person, there must first be some underlying
unhappiness, sense of hopelessness, or physical pain.

The Cycle of Addiction

Drug addiction follows a cycle like this:

A person has some problem, sense of unhappiness or hopelessness, or physical


discomfort. It could be a teenager experiencing his first romantic rejection, or a grandmother
with arthritis, or it could be a man in his prime, wondering why he keeps failing on the job. Or it
could be someone at any age in between.

This person drinks or tries drugs. The alcohol or drugs APPEAR to solve his problem. He
feels better. Because he now SEEMS better able to deal with life, the drugs become valuable to
him.

The person gradually increases his usage of his drug of choice. He is then trapped.
Whatever problem he was initially trying to solve by using drugs or alcohol fades from memory.
At this point, all he can think about is getting and using drugs. He loses the ability to control his
usage and disregards the horrible consequences of his addiction.

The addict will now attempt to withold the fact of his drug use from friends and family
members. He will begin to suffer the effects of his own dishonesty and guilt. He may become
withdrawn and difficult to reason with. He may behave strangely.

The more he drinks and uses drugs, the more guilty he will feel, and the more depressed
he will become. He will sacrifice his personal integrity, possibly lying and stealing to finance his
drinking or drug habit. His relationships with friends and family and his job performance will go
drastically downhill.
Addiction and Tolerance

The drugs and alcohol are now the most important thing in his life. He has thrown away
his job, his life-savings, his dreams and ambitions, all in an effort to maintain the painkilling and
emotion killing effects he once obtained from the drugs. But ironically, his ability to get "high"
from the alcohol or drugs gradually decreases as his body adapts to the presence of foreign
chemicals. He must take more and more, and he now has to have them to be able to function at
all.

As he continues to drink or use drugs, his body continues to adapt to the presence of the
drugs. This is when the newly created addict begins to experience drug cravings. He will
experience an overwhelming obsession with getting and using his drugs, and will do anything to
avoid the pain of withdrawing from them.

He has crossed an invisible and intangible line. He is now a drug addict or alcoholic.

Progression of Addiction

As his alcoholism or drug addiction progresses, he will become increasingly haggard and
ill-tempered. He will be riding on a drug or alcohol induced emotional roller-coaster which may
actually be mistaken for mental illness. He may seem very "up" and enthusiastic when he is high,
but when the drugs wear off, he becomes depressed and lethargic. He may go into a drug-
induced depression. At this point, the addict is stuck in a vicious downward spiral. He faces the
problem of having to find money to buy drugs and to attempt to appear normal to his friends,
family and employer. Whether he wants to stop or not, he is now trapped. By now, the drugs he
abuses will have changed him both physically and mentally.

Personality Changes

Long-term alcoholism and drug addiction can cause one's personality to change. This is
called the Biochemical Personality. Some of the characteristics are:

 Mood swings
 Unreliable. Unable to finish projects.
 Unexpressed resentment and secret hatreds.
 Dishonesty. Lies to family, friends, employers.
 Withdraws from those who love him. Isolates self.
 May appear chronically depressed.
 May begin stealing from family and friends.

Addicts cannot stop using drugs for two reasons. These are:

 Cravings caused by drug residues which remain in the body.


 The Biochemical Personality caused by drugs and the lifestyle of the addict.
Bio-Chemical Aspects of Addiction and Drug Craving

When a person continuously drinks or uses drugs, his body becomes supersaturated with
metabolites (the chemicals the body converts the drugs or alcohol into). These metabolites,
although removed rapidly from most bodily tissues, may become trapped in the fatty tissues and
remain there for years.

When he tries to quit, these drug or alcohol metabolites can be released back into the
bloodstream. This can trigger drug or alcohol cravings which are almost impossible to resist. It
would be like trying to quit smoking while continuing to smoke 1 or 2 cigarettes per day.

Presence of these metabolites in the blood, even in microscopic amounts, cause the brain
to react as if the addict were withdrawing from the drug. Receptor sites in brain cells that have
adapted to large amounts of the drug metabolite are now forced to deal with having only a small
amount of the drug metabolite available. The brain “requests” the addict to give it more of the
drug. This is called drug craving. The only way to end this is to take more drugs or drink more,
and the cycle begins all over again.

Eliminating Drug Cravings the Narconon Way

In years past, the common assumption in the scientific community was that drugs were
eliminated from the body within 3-5 days after the last usage. We now know that these drugs can
remain stored in fatty tissues for years.

The New Life Detoxification procedure produces the following results:

 Reduction or elimination of drug and alcohol cravings.


 Ability to think more clearly.
 Reduction or elimination of many symptoms associated with drug addiction and
alcoholism. These can include depression, insomnia, and emotional instability.