Why Addicts Cannot Stop Using Drugs or Alcohol
There are two basic causes for continued addiction:
- The first of these is the long term effects of drug residuals in the body. The Mental and Physical cravings caused by drug residues which remain in the body, even long after a person quits using the drug, simply drives the addict to use more of the drug. This cause of continued addiction is thoroughly addressed and treated with great success through our program.
- The second of these causes is the “Biochemical Personality”. This is the “way of thinking” that is caused by drug addiction and the lifestyle an addict adopts to get drugs and live with a drug habit. This cause of continued addiction is also specifically addressed with effectively in the second part of the program.
Drug Residues: What they are and how they work
The addict can “just say no” a thousand times, but it only takes saying “yes” one time to start the cycle of addiction again.
Several decades ago, the biochemical aspect of drug addiction were discovered. This biochemical breakthrough has led to the most successful approach to rehabilitation in existence.
In essence, when a person uses drugs over a period of time, the body becomes unable to completely eliminate all traces of them. The traces that remain are stored in the fatty tissues. Called “drug metabolites”, these traces re-enter the system and trigger cravings for the drug along with the “Biochemical Personality” traits that are a non-optimum way of life.
Left unhandled, these manifestations will haunt a person for years even if they have sobered up. Left untreated, they can trigger a serious relapse.
These unresolved symptoms and manifestations, whether physical or mental in origin, create an underlying low-level type of stress which cannot be completely ignored by the addict. The addict can “just say no” a thousand times, but it only takes him saying “yes” one time to start the cycle of addiction again.
Drug Residues Remain in Fatty Tissues
Drugs are broken down in the liver into substances called metabolites. Although removed rapidly from the blood stream, metabolites can become trapped in the fatty tissues. The one thing in common—and the problem that needs to be addressed—is that these drug residues remain trapped for years.
Tissues in our bodies that are high in fats are turned over very slowly. When they are turned over, the stored drug metabolites are released into the blood stream and reactivate the same brain centers as if the person actually took the drug. The former addict now experiences restimulation of a drug episode (or “flashback”) and subsequent drug craving. This is common in the months after an addict quits and can continue to occur for years, even decades.
Drug and Alcohol Relapse Prevention
The Cycle of Quitting, Withdrawal, Craving And Relapse
When the addict initially tries to quit, cells in the brain that have become used to large amounts of these metabolites are now forced to deal with much decreased amounts. Even as the withdrawal symptoms subside, the brain “demands” that the addict give it more of the drug. This is called drug craving.
Craving is an extremely powerful urge and can cause a person to create all kinds of “reasons” they should begin using drugs again. He is now trapped in an endless cycle of trying to quit, craving, relapse and fear of withdrawal.
Eventually, the brain cells will again become used to having lowered drug metabolites. But, because deposits of drug metabolites release back into the bloodstream from fatty tissues for years, craving and relapse remain a cause for concern.
The presence of metabolites even in microscopic amounts cause the brain to react as if the addict had again actually taken the drug and can set up craving and relapse even after years of sobriety.
Eliminating Drug Metabolites
The Narconon method utilizes a combination of exercise, induced sweating in a sauna, and nutritional supplements to eliminate the traces of drugs, or metabolites, stored in the fatty tissue.
No drugs of any kind are used in our program, such as “addiction substitute drugs” like methadone.
The results of this phase of the program are:
- Reduction or elimination of drug and alcohol cravings.
- Reduction or elimination of many symptoms associated with drug addiction and alcoholism. These can include depression, irritability, and fatigue.
- Ability to think more clearly.
- Improved memory and attention span.
- Increased energy.
- Increased sense of well being.
- Enthusiasm toward Life.
Handling the “Biochemical Personality”
After successfully eliminating drug traces from the body, we move through a series of specialized study courses that complement and expand on each other to help the addict recognize the old addiction life-style and thought processes. With Narconon you can truly Break the Cycle of Addiction forever.
These unique cognitive and objective therapies are followed by life skills training, delivered in easily understood phases designed to complement and expand on each other.
The Narconon drug rehabilitation program is complete when the former addict recognizes and accepts responsibility for old habit patterns and “reasons why”. The person’s relationships with and understanding of himself, his family, friends and environment are fully examined and rehabilitated.
For information on the research basis and origins of the Narconon program click here.