Why Is It So Hard to Seek Addiction Treatment and Recovery?

The decision to seek addiction treatment and recovery can be hard to make. As a matter of fact, the National Survey on Drug Use and Health (NSDUH) reported that only about 10% of those addicted get the treatment they need. There are several reasons for this, but the overriding reason is addiction is a chronic disease that changes the way you think. It makes you continue to seek and use drugs or alcohol despite the harm it causes. However, with professional addiction treatment, you can recover and remain sober.

5 Reasons It’s Hard to Quit Drugs or Alcohol

Severe addiction is more difficult to get over on your own. Here are 5 reasons many individuals don’t get treatment.

1. Addiction Affects the Brain

Substance use disorder (SUD) also called addiction is a disorder that affects the brain. SUD causes compulsive seeking and use of drugs or alcohol. Long-term use of these substances leads to chemical changes in the brain that keeps you craving for drugs or alcohol. In essence, addiction makes you lose control and unable to quit. This is according to the American Society of Addiction Medicine (SAMSHA).

2. Addiction May Co-Occur with Mental Disorders

Those who are addicted often struggle with an underlying mental disorder. Common co-occurring disorders include depression, schizophrenia, and anxiety disorder. These disorders tend to trigger substance abuse. Turning to drugs or alcohol then becomes a way of coping. When getting admitted to treatment, the medical team will do an evaluation to determine if you have a disorder that needs treatment.

3. You Don’t Really Know You’re Addicted

The first step to seeking addiction treatment is knowing that you have a problem. You may know that something is wrong, but still not know you’re addicted. Common signs are an inability to control drug or alcohol use, withdrawal symptoms, e.g., nausea or vomiting, mood changes, and avoiding family or friends. Other signs are stealing or lying to support the habit, trouble with the law, and reckless behaviors.

4. You’re in Denial

Denying the addiction will stop you from going to rehab. Perhaps family members or loved ones asked if you’re abusing drugs or alcohol and you denied it. They may tell you they notice you have drug use paraphernalia, e.g. needles, or are displaying signs of addiction. Yet, you won’t admit the addiction. You believe you need to continue using to curb your craves, relieve stress or emotional pain, or feel “normal.”

5. You’re Afraid to Get Treatment

Fear of getting treated can stop you from checking into rehab. Fear can stem from stories you heard about how difficult withdrawal is. Not wanting to live in rehab, believing you will fail or relapse, and not wanting to feel judged for your addiction may also drive fear into you. Shame, guilt, embarrassment, or feeling unworthy may compound these fears.

Getting Addiction Treatment

Overcoming addiction requires strength and grit, first to seek treatment and then to manage substance use triggers. Professional treatment at rehab can help you recover. Addiction programs are delivered in an inpatient (residential) or outpatient setting and are designed to suit your individual needs. Treatment typically involves detoxification followed by therapy.


Substance abuse affects you physically and psychologically so you must undergo treatment for both aspects. Detox is done to purge the body of the drug or alcohol and allow you to physically withdraw from the substance. A medical team may supervise your withdrawal if the addiction is severe. Your physician may even give you prescription drugs to help ease the physical and psychological symptoms, and stop the cravings. You should stabilize within 7 to 21 days and be ready for therapy, but the timeline depends on how severe your addiction is.

Behavioral Therapy

Detox by itself is not effective to treat addiction. According to The Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA), 40-60 percent of those treated for substance use disorder will relapse. But completing therapy and staying in treatment, e.g., attending sober groups, improves your chances of sobriety. Behavioral therapy or psychotherapy aims to help you discover the link between substance abuse and any mental health issues you may have. Your therapist will help you to see how substance abuse is harmful. You’ll also develop healthy coping skills to prevent relapse.

Getting admitted to a treatment center in Florida

Although it seems difficult to find the courage to get the help you need, you can overcome addiction at our Central or South Florida treatment center. Our trained medical professionals will perform dual-diagnosis before tailoring your treatment plan. You’ll be treated in a compassionate inpatient or outpatient environment. Call today at 772-266-5320 to find out more about our programs and admission.

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Essentials mission is to renew lives impacted by addiction through personalized and complete behavioral healthcare. Our main purpose is to provide services and education to the client and family that will support long lasting recovery of mind, body, and spirit.