Study Suggests Addicts Are at Greater Risk of COVID-19

The COVID-19 pandemic has spurred tragic, unprecedented loss around the world. Unfortunately, a recent study indicates that addicts are at a higher risk of contracting COVID-19 and often have worse outcomes from infection than other patients. The findings of this study are crucial to consider for those struggling with SUD amid the COVID-19 pandemic. 

Study Outcomes

Conducted by researchers at The MetroHealth System, Case Western Reserve University, and the National Institute on Drug Abuse, this study revealed that COVID-19 infections and adverse outcomes from the virus are more common among people with substance abuse disorder (SUD). The link between substance abuse and COVID-19 infection was the most prevalent in patients with opioid and tobacco addictions. 


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How Addictive Is Cocaine?

Cocaine triggers one of the strongest psychological dependencies in users, second only to methamphetamine. This makes it one of the most highly addictive drugs in existence.

How Does Drug Addiction Develop?

Drug addiction, whether to cocaine or another addictive drug, develops with repeated use. As the drug causes the release of neurotransmitters like dopamine and serotonin, the brain may stop naturally releasing them as frequently, so addicts may develop a dependence on the drug to attain a chemical balance in the brain. 


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How Addiction Can Implode a Person’s Life

When addiction takes hold in a person, it can impact every aspect of their life. The ramifications of addiction are far-reaching and brutal, affecting not only the person struggling with addiction, but also their loved ones. In cases of addiction, relationships, careers, and lives are at risk.


Addiction has extensive consequences, and the burden doesn’t fall on the shoulders of the addict alone. All types of relationships, whether it’s between family, friends, or significant others, suffer when one individual develops an addiction. Addiction diminishes trust and independence between loved ones, and it can put the sober individual under a lot of stress. Feelings of anger, resentment, and fear can build over time, too often leading to broken relationships as a result of addiction. 


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How Your Addiction Affects Your Loved Ones

Addiction doesn’t only impact the life of the addict; it also has a significant effect on the people who are close to them, whether it be friends, family members, and significant others. This can make for a very complicated situation as loved ones try to navigate their relationships with an individual who’s struggling with addiction. The behaviors of the addicted individual don’t affect that person alone; risky and unhealthy behaviors will have a ripple effect on loved ones. 


One of the main aspects of a relationship that’s lost when a person becomes addicted is trust. Addiction makes a person less capable of staying true to their word and following through on their promises. People who are suffering from addiction also have more difficulty keeping up with their responsibilities. No matter the type of relationship, whether it be between romantic partners, a parent and child, friends, or siblings, addiction can lead to a major loss of trust that can be enormously difficult to rebuild. 


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How To Support Your Adult Child in Their Addiction Recovery

Having a loved one who’s struggling with addiction is always extremely difficult. However, parents of adult children who have developed an addiction face a unique set of challenges. As a parent, your instinct is to always protect your child. In cases of addiction, there’s a fine line between protecting your child and enabling his or her addiction. This makes it important to understand how to support your adult child in addiction recovery in a productive manner. 

Set Boundaries.

It’s important to set boundaries with your adult child to build a healthy relationship, rather than a codependent one. Codependency can actually lead to parents unintentionally exacerbating their child’s addiction. Setting boundaries, such as not habitually loaning them money or not taking phone calls in the middle of the night, can encourage your child to be independent. This will better prepare them for a healthy lifestyle after they’ve fully recovered.  


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Recovery Plans: Do They Work?

Anyone who has started AA, NA, or gone to rehab has at least been directed to write a recovery plan. Your addiction recovery plan is your step-by-step outline of what you are going to do to stay sober. This goes far beyond listing and avoiding triggers and people or situations that could lead to relapse. There are a lot of things that need to go into a recovery plan if it is going to work.

Engagement in sobriety

This is a step that a lot of people miss. Introverts don’t want to sit around with other people in a group, and it was probably one of the reasons they rejoiced to be leaving the rehab setting. Some people avoid these resources because they are embarrassed or simply afraid someone will find out they can’t be sober for long. 


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What Is Cognitive Behavioral Therapy?

If you have ever done in-patient drug rehabilitation treatment, you have probably at least heard of cognitive behavioral therapy. But what is it really, and why does it seem to be part of the treatment of most addicts? Here is what you need to know and why you should give it a try with your therapist or addiction counselor.

What happens in cognitive behavioral therapy?

Cognitive behavioral therapy focuses on identifying the thoughts, experiences, and beliefs that shape your behaviors so that you can consciously change them. Often, CBT is paired with mindfulness therapy so that patients can identify when a problem is occurring.


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How Do I Tell My Loved Ones I am Considering Treatment?

Drug addiction or alcoholism often begins with a schism within the family, or it begins with addiction in the family. In either case, it can be difficult to go to your family and tell them you are considering getting help for your addiction. Here are some tips for making the decision.

Is your family likely to try to talk you out of substance abuse treatment?

If your family believes that religion can save you, or that you don’t need help at all, you’re going to be dreading that conversation. But honestly, should you tell them before you go to rehab? If the family member or friend doesn’t understand why you want to get clean and live a better life, they could try to talk you out of it. 


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What Benefits Come from Counseling?

If you got sober by going to a rehab facility or some similar situation, you likely received support for physically detoxing from the drugs. Not only that, you probably received some type of counseling services. You might think those services were designed only to get you through rehab or meet court requirements, but there is actually an important purpose to addiction counseling.

You see, counseling isn’t just about kicking addition. It’s about understanding why the addiction exists in the first place. It is understanding and coping with triggers so that you don’t slip and end up back in rehab in another year or less. Counseling is about dealing with your past and learning how to move forward as a sober member of society.


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Cutting Ties: Why It’s Difficult and Why It’s Important

Have you heard the phrase, “Blood is thicker than water?” A lot of people throw that phrase around quite a bit. They use this as an explanation and reasoning for sticking with family no matter what they do, but psychologists are urging people to recognize that toxic people, even if they share your bloodline, should not be tolerated.

Why is it so hard to cut off friends you’ve had for years?

Often when we are friends with someone for a long time, we think of them as family, and it can be very difficult to cut off family. But you have to remember that your mental health and sobriety require you to remove stress and drama from your life. Regardless of how long you have known someone, if they are an addict or are otherwise toxic, you really have to walk away.


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