Addiction is a devastating, life-changing disease, and nobody is immune to its destructive effects. The costs of addiction can be astronomical regardless of age, race, gender, education, or professional status. Obviously, addiction is often costly in terms of the literal amounts of money required to sustain a substance use disorder. However, addiction is also deeply costly in the human sense. From the ongoing opioid crisis to the prevalence of alcohol abuse, addiction costs the person suffering from addiction and their loved ones in a myriad of ways. With the right support, it is always possible to combat this destructive and overwhelming disease. 

The Stigma of Addiction

“Addiction” can be a difficult word to process, and there is still a lot of confusion about what the word means. Addiction is often stigmatized and unfairly correlated to some kind of moral failing or personal weakness. Such stigmas surrounding the word can make it far too easy to look down upon or criminalize those most impacted by addiction. However, addiction is a disease that fundamentally changes one’s brain chemistry and directly affects one’s mental and emotional health. From environmental factors to trauma and genetics, addiction is much more complex than a simple moral failing or sign of weakness. Understanding this aspect of addiction is crucial for helping those overcome their struggles with the disease. 

Addiction is also much more prevalent than many may realize, with many cases of addiction going unaddressed. Some may be hiding their use of addictive substances. Others may only search for help after experiencing a negative event, such as a car accident or job loss, precipitated by a substance use disorder. Alcohol abuse alone is estimated to affect a staggering number of people. One 2017 survey estimates that about one in eight people engage in binge drinking. Drug use is also at epidemic levels. In 2020, nearly 92,000 individuals passed away as a result of a drug overdose. Given how ubiquitous addiction to alcohol or drugs is, it is vital to break down the stigmas surrounding addiction in order to promote recovery. 

The Costs of Addiction

Inaction is not an option for those suffering from addiction, and finding the proper support to tackle this disease is paramount. Addiction is costly, both in financial terms and human terms.  In 1985, addiction to drugs and alcohol combined cost an estimated $114 billion, and between lost productivity and job loss, coupled with healthcare and other expenses of addiction, this number increases each year. However, it is not reflective of the true destructive nature of addiction on the people suffering from the disease. It is impossible to put a price tag on lost relationships and one’s mental, physical, and emotional health, and such dangers can be incalculable. Despite the immeasurable costs of addiction, there is always still time to make a change. 

The Need for Change

Addiction impacts each individual differently, and it can be difficult to determine when one’s use of an addictive substance has developed into a fully destructive addiction. Oftentimes, one may realize their need for change only after a truly traumatic event has taken place in the form of the loss of a job, relationship, or as a result of legal consequence. Asking oneself “what would it take for me to change?” can be a powerful sentiment. It can put one’s use of addictive substances in perspective, allowing an individual to take change into their control. 

Addiction can also follow an individual throughout their day and isn’t tied to a single location. Addiction can impact one’s home life to one’s life in the professional sphere. It can even follow an individual across state lines, homes, and more. It is something that needs to be actively addressed in order to overcome, and finding the right help is necessary for a truly transformative experience in recovery. 

Stigma | What is it?

Stigma is a major roadblock for those seeking recovery. This article defines stigma and ways you can reduce or eliminate stigma and get the help you need. Is there a more reviled word? Is there any other noun so fervently avoided?

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Change Is Possible at Hawaii Island Recovery 

Hawaii Island Recovery understands the ubiquitous and life-change nature of addiction and positions itself as both a transformative space to begin healing as well as an ongoing resource. Hawaii combines tried and proven therapeutic programs with the unique spirituality of the big island, creating a truly unique experience catered to each individual’s needs. Hawaii Island Recovery believes that recovery is a wholly transformative experience. We not only address one’s use of addictive substances and their consequences, but also help an individual embrace a new perspective, lifestyle, routine, and mentality surrounding the idea of a sober life. By addressing one’s psychological, social, and cultural needs, recovery can be the beginning of an entirely new life. 

Addiction is a widespread and destructive disease, and we at Hawaii Island Recovery are committed to helping you begin your journey to a sober future. No two journeys to sobriety will be the same, so tackling the use of addictive substances along with these stresses, anxieties, or mental health disorders that may inform your use is just as important for a truly transformative and healthy recovery. We offer an array of programs from medical detox to residential treatment, all in our small and intimate atmosphere that allows us to address your unique needs and goals in an informed and impactful way. Rehab at Hawaii is based on your psychological, social, and cultural needs just as much as your physical needs, and coupled with the unique spirituality that covers the big island, we are prepared to create a truly transformative experience. For more information, call (866) 390-5070.