disease model of alcohol addiction Alaska

The Disease Model of Addiction

Although the American Medical Association declared addiction a disease that can be treated in 1956, there is a great deal of controversy surrounding whether addiction is actually a disease or simply a moral failure. Although it may seem unimportant, viewing alcohol addiction Alaska as a disease really does change things. Viewing addiction as a disease does the following:

  • It changes how you approach the addict
  • It changes how addicts view themselves
  • It can change whether or not they will get treatment

Gaining a better understanding of the disease model can greatly benefit individuals struggling with alcohol addiction Alaska. Below is a guide that will hopefully educate you on the disease model as well as new ways to approach addiction altogether.

Understanding The Disease Model

Many individuals believe that viewing addiction as a disease gives them a “get out of jail free card,” so to speak, or even enables alcohol addiction Alaska. However, this thinking is misguided, and needs to be reconsidered.

Addiction has definitive withdrawal symptoms, can be affected by the environment, and has real measurable effects on the brain. Along with this, the disease model observes that addiction is a chronic condition. This means it may be traced to heredity, meaning addicts’ children may be more likely to have addictive qualities than the children of non-addicts.

Along with this, addiction has biological, environmental, and neurological sources of origin. It is affected by biology, as previously mentioned in regards to heredity. It is environmental because it can be “contracted” from drugs and alcohol. Finally, abusing alcohol or drugs has real effects on the brain. These substances trick the brain’s reward system, and change the brain’s structure. In this way, it is scientifically accurate to refer to addiction as a disease.

What Difference Does It Make?

After all of this discussion, is there really a difference? At the end of the day, you or the addict you know still struggle with alcohol addiction Alaska. How does viewing it as a disease change anything?

First, it changes how you interact with people struggling with addiction. Tough love is an impulse when dealing with addiction, but viewing addiction as a disease shows tough love doesn’t work. You would not belittle a cancer patient for still having cancer. In the same way, it leads to approaching addiction with more empathy.

Next, it changes how addicts can view themselves. One of the biggest myths that prevent addicts from getting treatment is that they do not deserve it. However, some may find the disease model encouraging. Fighting addiction is hard enough, but even harder if you believe it is entirely your fault.

Alcohol Addiction Alaska Treatment

If you are dealing with alcohol addiction Alaska, or any type of addiction, it is imperative to get treatment. Realizing addiction is a disease should only further motivate individuals to get treatment. If you are diagnosed with diabetes, the automatic response is to find medical treatment. This same response should occur in those struggling with an addiction.

Aspire Health Network offers some of the best treatment facilities in the world. If you have any questions regarding treatment or rehabilitation, our team of compassionate counselors is available 24/7 to meet you individual needs. Contact us today by calling (844) 338-5046. Getting help is the most important step towards recovery. Do not hesitate to reach out.