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Can You Get Sober Without Going to Treatment?

When a person needs and wants to get sober, the more help they receive, the better their chances are at succeeding. Many attempts to get sober on their own, but unfortunately, most of those people do fail eventually and return to drinking, drugging, or addictive behavior. The question as to whether or not someone can get sober without going to treatment is yes, but will they remain sober, is not likely, and almost always NO. The solution to helping a person who needs to get sober is to help them enter a program for recovery that they are interested in and encouraged by.

To push a person to a treatment program where they do not like the format, the location, the rules (such as no smoking, or visits, or cellphones) will not help them stay focused on stopping their drug and alcohol addiction. The decision to accept help is only had after a person fully realizes that they are in trouble and that their addiction or alcoholism is ruining their life.

Can You Get Sober Without Going to Treatment?

Addiction is a Disease

The disease of addiction is complicated. Many people who do not understand addiction think that if someone has gone to jail, become unhealthy, or financially broke, that they would stop using drugs or drinking. Most people who struggle with substance use disorder also referred to as addiction, are aware of the consequences that their drug or alcohol use has caused. These individuals do not like it, and they do want to stop. The necessary willpower to stay ‘stopped’ is why they can’t. Willpower will not keep someone sober or clean. It might help get hem clean and sober, but it will not sustain their recovery.

Addiction and Will Power

The reason willpower is not enough to keep a person clean and sober long term is that the disease of addiction stems from multiple influencers that affect a person’s emotional and mental wellbeing. People who use drugs and alcohol are attempting to feel better because of either environmental influences they experienced as children (drinking or drugging in the home) abuse, neglect, a family history of addiction, or an emotional or mental health diagnosis. Many people with addiction have all or any of these influencers in their life history.

Therefore, the idea of being strong enough to get through life without drugs or alcohol after you have depended on them to help you cope, relax, or escape is impossible. There are also neurobiological reasons that quitting drugs and alcohol is difficult without professional treatment.  Once a person uses a substance addictively, their brains adjust to the presence of the substance. Eventually, what happens is that it is difficult for this person to experience joy or pleasure from things that are not substances.

For example, a person who is now addicted to heroin may remember when they used to love watching sunsets. After years of heroin use, when they go to watch a sunset, they are bored and do not understand why they do not think it is remarkable. What has occurred to this individual is what is known as neuroadaptation. Neuroadaptation occurs when a person repeatedly exposes their brains to a substance or behavior that releases enormous amounts of brain chemicals that cause euphoria and pleasure.

In time this individual’s brain will work to create a healthy balance of brain chemicals and counter the effects of the substances to keep the person alive. The brain’s efforts to remain healthy then causes drug and alcohol tolerance. The brain must repeatedly slow down the euphoric brain chemicals regardless of how much the individual uses. Therefore, in time an addict or alcoholic will repeatedly attempt to use more and more substance and develop a tolerance. At the end of the day, nothing gets them high.

Since addiction affects the brain in such a significant way, the idea of willpower without help from a treatment program that includes medication-assisted treatment methods when needed, as well as counseling and guidance from others who have succeeded in recovery, is unrealistic.

Professional Help for Dealing With Addiction

To learn about the treatment programs at Evoke Wellness Florida, please connect with one of our treatment specialists. We have decades of experience in helping men, women, and families overcome the disease of addiction.

Ready to Make a Change?

We understand that the treatment process can be difficult at times. At Evoke Wellness Florida, we are committed to assisting you in making progress towards a new life free from the grips of addiction.

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