9 Common Myths About Substance Addiction All You Need to Know

Myths about addiction contribute to the stigma people with the disease face, which can discourage them from getting the treatment they need. Recovery is a deeply personal journey, and it is important to recognize that it can vary from person to person. While complete sobriety may be the goal for some individuals, it is not the only definition of successful recovery.


Myth #5 Rehab doesn’t work.

In this article, we will explore and debunk some of the most common myths about addiction and recovery. While we’re firm believers in the power that comes with education and setting boundaries, we never want loved ones to feel shame or as if it’s their sole responsibility to get someone well. We’re here for you, just as we’re here for those struggling with alcohol or other drugs. All these actions have been proven to motivate a person at risk to accept help.

Myth #3: Only certain types of people have substance abuse issues.

Relapse can make a person feel shame, guilt, and hopelessness about their situation, which may make it more difficult for them to seek help again. Exploring different treatment options and making changes to support sobriety may be needed in order to be successful. By debunking the myth that relapse is a sign of failure, we can create a more supportive and understanding environment for individuals in recovery.

Myth: If a person has a family life and holds a stable job, they cannot have a drug or alcohol addiction.

In my recent presentations, I have begun by warning audiences that I will undercut all of their fundamental beliefs about addiction — but that if that prospect seemed alarming, they shouldn’t worry. They wouldn’t change their thinking no matter what evidence I presented, even if the consequences of their not doing so took the form of continuing spiraling drug death rates. One of the most damaging myths is the belief that addiction is simply a matter of choice, implying that those who have an addiction lack moral substance or discipline. Now that you know a bit more about recovery, you should know that you don’t have to go on this journey alone. If you’re looking for assistance, Purposes Recovery offers the best medical detox in Los Angeles.

Her father did not respond to her message for hours, then asked her at 2 a.m. Ashley Lee is a staff reporter at the Los Angeles Times, where she writes about theater, movies, television and the bustling intersection of the stage and the screen. An alum of the Eugene O’Neill Theater Center’s National Critics Institute and Poynter’s Power of Diverse Voices, she leads workshops on arts journalism at the Kennedy Center American College Theater Festival. She was previously a New York-based editor at the Hollywood Reporter and has written for the Washington Post, Backstage and American Theatre, among others. This non-invasive therapy can help clear the way to long-term recovery.

  • Continuing use is typically harmful to relationships as well as to obligations at work or school.
  • I answered that this was a logical and true answer, since getting drugs on the street was always more deadly than taking drugs under medical supervision.

Yet these so-called harm reduction approaches have failed to stem the tide of drug deaths. Their failure is because they identify and address addiction as a brain disease to be treated medically. There is no sign that the failure of this perspective is causing or will cause any prevailing actors to change their thinking. Many people believe that once an individual has myths about addiction and recovery successfully completed a treatment program, they are ‘cured’ and no longer have to worry about their addiction. This belief can set unrealistic expectations and make individuals feel like they have failed if they experience difficulties or setbacks in their recovery. There is a stigma surrounding seeking help for any type of mental illness, including addiction.

Unveil the biology of addiction and how the brain’s neurotransmitters and genetics play a pivotal role in its grasp.

myths about addiction and recovery

In some cases, abrupt cessation of alcohol use can lead to seizures, delirium tremens, and even death. Get the latest announcements on SAMHSA’s effort to address recovery support. 7 in 10 adults who ever had a substance use problem considered themselves to be recovering or in recovery. We host a free weekly sober support group on Monday nights, on Zoom. One of the most valuable things I did in early recovery was finding a community to support me and help me find my way. But what if I told you that alcohol might actually be causing your anxiety?

Science Daily: Mind & Brain

That being said, the consequences of addiction (or costs of using) are oftentimes what tip the motivational balance, leading to increased motivation. Believing in these myths can stop you from making the life-changing decision to stop drinking. Listen to our podcast episode on coping with anxiety for real life stories about how people in long term recovery handle their anxiety without alcohol. On a recent trip to Norway, while I was driving a dog sled through snowy hills, all I could think was – thank goodness I don’t feel like I have to drink anymore. The rush and the laughter and the thrill of it all – it was happiness unaltered. If I’d have done that when I was still drinking, I’d have been convinced that a few drinks prior would’ve made it even better.

myths about addiction and recovery

  • It’s a common notion to assume that addicted individuals just lack the willpower to overcome their drug or alcohol abuse.
  • Therefore, a big part of recovery is finding that missing piece, and being able to give it to oneself.
  • Many individuals have negative perceptions and misconceptions about addiction and recovery.
  • Addiction does not discriminate based on factors such as age, gender, race, or social status.


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