People turn to alcohol or drugs for many reasons. Some will do so out of curiosity and continue to drink or take drugs because they enjoy the feelings it produces. Others, though, turn to these chemical substances in a bid to help them cope with the stresses of everyday life or because the memories of a traumatic event are too painful otherwise.
It is not unusual for individuals to start drinking heavily when faced with the loss of a loved one, for example. They self-medicate with alcohol or strong painkillers as this takes the edge off the pain. Others have experienced trauma in childhood that continues to haunt them years later.
Traumatic events such as the death of a loved one, childhood abuse, or witnessing a fatal accident can all cause feelings of immense sadness and depression. People who have unresolved trauma have a better excuse than anyone for turning to drugs or alcohol, but the reality is that it is still an excuse. That may sound harsh, but there are a large number of individuals who have also experienced traumatic events in their past but have not turned to chemical substances to cope.
Drugs and alcohol do not help with traumatic experiences in the long run. Initially, they may contribute to blocking out the pain, but the reality is that those who develop addictions to these substances will then have two problems to deal with – the unresolved trauma and the addiction.
Dealing with Addiction
If you have developed an addiction because you self-medicated with alcohol or drugs, you will need to deal with the addiction before you can address the unresolved trauma. It is crucial that you have a clear head. It may be necessary for you to complete a programme of detoxification.
It might be wise to contact a service such as Addiction Helper for advice about how to move forward on the journey towards sobriety. We have a team of professional counsellors and therapists ready to take your call and to listen to your situation. They will be able to advise you on the various treatments available in your area, as well as offering you a full assessment of your situation. They can also provide you with a free referral to an appropriate treatment provider based on your requirements.
Whatever the reason for your addiction to drugs or alcohol, you need to ask yourself whether your drug of choice has made your life better. If you are completely honest, you will probably realise that this substance has in fact made your life worse.
No matter how miserable you felt before taking drugs or drinking alcohol, you are likely to be feeling worse now. These substances may have provided temporary relief in the beginning but, as you continued to abuse them, they began to take over. Before long, you lost control of your ability to make good decisions and your life soon revolved around the substance to which you had become addicted.
Admitting you have a problem can be tough, but it will be the best thing you ever do. Once you can be honest and accept that drugs or alcohol have taken over, you will be ready to get help. Your life may seem bad now, but if you continue to behave as you are now, you will find that things will go steadily downhill. Nevertheless, if you get help now, you have a chance at living a clean and healthy life going forward. You can beat your addiction and get the help you need to deal with the unresolved trauma in your life. Call Addiction Helper today, we can help you fight the dual diagnosis.