One of our biggest motivating forces to recover from our addictions is wanting to get back to who we were before addiction took over our lives. We want to rebuild the lives we lost. What are some ways in which addiction changes us?
The Psychological Effects of Addiction
Mentally, we can be quite altered by addiction because we can:
- Experience memory loss
- Become cognitively impaired
- Struggle to understand things that once were simple for us
- Lose entire skill sets
Emotionally, addiction can cause us to lose our joy, of our sense of purpose, and our will to live. We can experience deep sadness, fear and anger. We can become more volatile and behave in extreme ways we might not have otherwise.
When someone is addicted to a substance, it can have a devastating effect on their psychological state. Some of the main psychological effects of addiction include:
People who are addicted may become depressed as a result of their addiction. This can be due to a number of factors, including the negative consequences that addiction can have on their life, such as job loss, financial problems, and relationship issues.
Addicted individuals may also experience anxiety as a result of their addiction. This can be due to the stress of using drugs or alcohol, or it can be due to the fear of withdrawal symptoms.
Destructive behavior and violence
Addiction can become a destructive force in our relationships, causing them to become toxic, even abusive. People who are addicted to drugs or alcohol may also be more likely to engage in violent behavior. This can be due to the effects that these substances have on the brain, which can make people more aggressive and impulsively violent.
As a result of these behaviors, we might distance ourselves from loved ones, leaving us estranged sometimes for years at a time. We may have a hard time accepting the reality of our addiction, and this can make us cut off relationships, especially when the other person is confronting us on the issue.
The Physical Effects of Addiction
Addiction can have various physical effects on us. It can cause us to age and wrinkle prematurely. We often look and feel exhausted. It can impact our sleep patterns causing us to lose sleep and have chronic insomnia along with our depression, or sleep too much, another symptom of depression. We might experience heightened anxiety and panic attacks, which can feel as though we’re having a heart attack.
Addiction can sometimes cause us to develop other destructive habits that impact our physical health. Some of us might start smoking more cigarettes when we’re dealing with the anxiety and stress of our addictions. We may develop eating disorders. Our physical health, such as our blood pressure and heart health, and our digestive health can all be impaired. We develop all kinds of ulcers, gastritis, liver and kidney disease, and various other physical illnesses.
Spiritually, addiction can cause us to totally lose our connection with our inner self and higher power. In fact, we can feel lost, alone, isolated and abandoned. Our spiritual disconnection can cause us to lose our hopefulness and our faith in ourselves, in other people, in the world in general. Addiction changes us in both obvious and imperceptible ways. Understanding the extreme ways in which we are impacted can help motivate us to seek help.
Addiction Can Be Overcome With the Right Treatment
At Bayview Recovery, we get to know you as an individual. We work with your unique story and experience to bring you a personalized treatment plan. Moreover, we’re here to give you the kind of support you need so that you can focus on getting better. Call 855.478.3650 for more information.