Am I an addict?
This is a difficult question and only you can answer it. By definition, an addict is a person who is addicted to an activity, habit, or substance. At Visible Recovery, we see addiction as a disease. It affects approximately one in ten people. It centres in the mind and affects the physical and spiritual being. It is the underlying thinking and behaviours behind any addiction that needs the most intensive treatment to enable change.
The physical part of addiction happens as the body becomes dependent upon the drug of choice (DOC). This is most apparent with some prescription drugs and heroin. A medically managed detoxification in a clinic or a hospital is the only safe way of managing the withdrawal symptoms. All drugs, when abused, are likely to have a negative effect on the body.
The mental condition of addiction is best described as the obsessive and compulsive thinking surrounding drug use. This often happens when the individual is not actually using drugs or alcohol at all. They can have overwhelming cravings to do so, even when no drug is detectable in their system. This often leads to the addicted person getting the drugs no matter what the financial, emotional or spiritual cost. This can put them at risk in the process . This is truly tunnel vision, overriding any rational thoughts of why they should not use or drink. Even in the face of extremely negative and serious outcomes, it is this obsessional thinking which drives the addict to continue their unquenchable thirst for more drugs.
For an addict, life without either drugs is painful if they don’t have a clear program of recovery. The compulsion to use for an addict does little to negate the problems in their lives, causes a very distorted view indeed, and often leads to the belief that they need to use drugs to relieve the problems they experience. It appears that life itself is the problem, and not the drugs they are consuming.
If you find yourself identifying with any or all of the above, then there is a good chance that you have a problem with addiction. Why not give us a call and talk to us and see if we could help?
Am I an alcoholic?
This is something that you have to decide for yourself. We are certainly not in the market of telling people that they are an addict or an alcoholic at all. Visible Recovery will only work for those people that have decided that they are, and that they want to do something about that, and stop and change. Alcohol is a killer if you are addicted to it. It is a serious addiction, and is insipid in its ability to tell you that everything is OK, and that things aren’t that bad when they really are. By the very nature of it being one of society’s legal drugs of choice today, it sets up a raft of problems for the alcoholic, and in particular within cultures that have an extremely social and outdoor lifestyle like here in Australia.
Becoming physically addicted to alcohol is very dangerous. It is the only drug in a detox that can kill you as you are coming off it. None of the other drugs of addiction can cause organ failure as quickly and without notice like alcohol can, which is why you need to stop using alcohol in a medically managed environment to ensure safe outcomes.
Alcoholism is a chronic and progressive disease. It includes problems like:-
- Trying to control your drinking
- Being preoccupied with alcohol
- Continuing to use alcohol when it causes problems
- Having to drink more to get the same effect
- Having withdrawal symptoms when you stop or decrease your drinking
It gets to the point where you can’t consistently say with confidence how much you’ll drink, how long you’ll drink, or the consequences that occur from drinking as a result of your changed behaviours. It can all start off very innocently with a couple of drinks a night after work, and that can rapidly turn into daily binge drinking, or even “around the clock” drinking or “top up drinking”, where you have alcohol in your system constantly. Binge drinking is where the primary intention is to get intoxicated by heavy consumption of alcohol over a short period of time. It can lead to the same health risks and social problems associated with alcoholism. The more you drink, the greater the risks.
If you have alcoholism or you have a problem with alcohol, you may not be able to cut back or quit without help. Alcoholism is the disease of denial, and this is often hallmarked in some way with someone who is alcoholic.
Beyond all of that, alcoholism isn’t just about the problematic drinking of alcohol. “I thought that if I just put down the drink, I would be fine. It was when I did just that, I realised just how sick I really was, and how distorted my behaviours and views on life had become. I desperately needed help with that, and I couldn’t do it on my own. It wasn’t until I started to change my life completely that the compulsion to drink left me” says Simon Bowen.
If you find yourself identifying with any or all of the above, then there is a good chance that you have a problem with alcohol . Why not give us a call and talk to us and see if we could help?
Do I have an addiction to gambling?
There are many and varying interpretations of compulsive gambling. A compulsive gambler is described as a person whose gambling has caused growing and continuing problems in any department of his or her life. It has the same hallmarks of any addiction, only it has gambling or betting as its “drug of choice” instead of alcohol or drugs.
It is described as being an invisible addiction, as there are no physical symptoms of having this problem, like marks on your arms, breath smelling of booze, or being obese or overweight like there are with other addictions.
Some of the things that happen to a person with a gambling addiction would include:-
- A steadily increasing preoccupation with gambling
- A need to bet more money, more frequently
- Restlessness or irritability when attempting to stop gambling
- “Chasing” losses with more gambling
- Continued gambling despite mounting serious and often negative consequences
The often massive financial losses that can occur with this addiction can shatter families and relationships. Gambling addiction can occur regardless of the game, be it the pokies, scratch cards, card games, horse and dog racing; even the lottery. And this isn’t just a financial problem – it’s a progressive illness. Paying off a gambler’s debts won’t cure the addiction; inevitably, the gambling addict will continue to place bets and accrue more debts that he or she can’t afford to pay.
If you find yourself identifying with any or all of the above, then there is a good chance that you have a problem with alcohol. Why not give us a call and talk to us and see if we could help?
Aftercare and support
When you have completed your stay with us at Visible Recovery, there is a mandatory 4 weeks of outpatient, followed by up to 12 months of aftercare. This will be a meeting every week of people that have graduated the programs they have attended, to help you remain sober and clean, and to refocus you on life after rehabilitation. This will give you a forum to discuss some of the issues that you are facing with others in recovery, as well as helping you to forge new and better relationships with people that remain clean and sober. You will also have access to regular one to one counselling sessions with one of our team to help you through the challenges of the first months of your new lives.
Employment @ Visible Recovery
Why not come and do some work with us? We are looking for good people all the time. We would ask that all people that want to work at Visible Recovery have good strong sobriety or clean time. We need this congruency to ensure that all staff and volunteers at Visible Recovery are examples of recovery themselves, so that the message is very clear here for those in treatment. We want to work with people that have good and strong recovery, to show others here that having a good and clean, sober life is not just a possibility, but a reality.
In the first instance, please drop us a line via email at firstname.lastname@example.org, and give us a brief idea of what position you would like to apply for, along with any relevant experience, clean time, and a recent CV. We will get back to you within 7 days to let you know what the possibilities might be. We absolutely will respond to you.
At Visible Recovery, we have outstanding outcomes for those clients that complete our programs. What have you got to lose? Call us on (08) 8223 6486 to arrange a free assessment now.