If you are interested in getting treatment for drug or alcohol addiction but are still questioning whether the tradeoff is worth it– you have come to the right place.
If you have tried to get clean alone with no success, this may have convinced you that sobriety is just too difficult to achieve. This, however, is not the case.
Addiction is a disease. With treatment and enrollment into a sober living program, people vastly improve their prospects for lifelong recovery. Additionally, everyone that chooses to commit to recovery does so because they see how it improves their quality of life.
Here are reasons why getting clean and sober will change your life and make you a better person.
- Regain Control
Control in the midst of an addiction is an illusion. That is why the“12 Step” program, requires individuals to admit that they are powerless over their use before they can heal.
Healing addiction requires the development of new skills. In drug rehab center, individuals learn how to gain the upper hand by identifying triggers, spotting patterns of use, and setting healthy boundaries.
Once the person has cleaned out their system and learned to manage their sobriety, they are finally able to get their lives under control.
- Sharpen Up
Extended periods of substance abuse can wreak havoc on a healthy brain. As one study outlines, one year of recovery drastically improves an individual’s short and long-term memory, attentiveness, and ability to focus1.
- Get Motivated
It’s not just the newfound energy or the improved mood, people who get clean attest that colors appear more vibrant, smells are stronger, and flavors more intense. When you aren’t hung up on using, the world becomes a more inspiring place.
- Be More Productive
Addiction is both distracting and time-consuming. Getting sober enables you to break the endless cycle of chemical dependency that robs you of your focus and the most productive hours of the day. It also revitalizes your mental and physical health making it easier to tackle challenges and get more done.
- Build Better Relationships
Everybody has at some time been in a bad relationship. It probably felt like such a relief to move on. But with addiction, there is a tendency to hold on to relationships that are permissive of drug use at the expense of harming healthy ones.
In recovery, individuals learn how to build healthy social support networks. When they finally transition back into their daily lives, they find that they are better able to maintain old relationships and build positive new ones.
For this reason, sober relationships:
- Feature Safety and Security
- Are Emotionally Supportive
- Are Honest and Dependable
- Increase Feelings of Meaning and Purpose
- Are Supportive of Recovery
- Foster the Desire to Self-Improve
- Heal Relationships with Family
Addiction rarely plays out in isolation. Being the parent, spouse, or child of somebody with a drug addiction can be very emotionally difficult. The person doesn’t want to hurt friends or family but will continue to do so until they get help. This can be lamentably true for dependents like children or older parents.
In the fog of drug use, you may have done things to break trust and damage your relationship with your family. While not all injuries mend with time, many do. What most families want above all else is for their loved ones to get well.
- Financial Security
Having a drug problem can be detrimental to your finances in many ways. When addiction directs your life, you come to work late and miss deadlines. If your employer isn’t happy with your performance, you could be passed over for raises and promotions.
Fueling an addiction is also extremely expensive. This can mean missing payments and racking up debts or even skipping meals to pay for your next fix.
- You Will Be Happier
Most people abuse drugs as a way of coping with mental health issues. By going to rehab they learn how to confront the root causes of addiction in treatment. This can be anything from depression or anxiety to trauma and PTSD.
Leaving addiction in the dust is extremely empowering. Having the self-control to determine your course in life is fundamental to the human experience. This is why people who maintain their sobriety report higher levels of personal satisfaction.
- Get More Out of Life
Living with addiction is stifling. So much time is wasted being hungover, obsessing over the next fix, or dealing with the endless cycle of drama that is created from it. Getting clean allows you to spend your free time actually having fun. You can go for a bike ride, spend time out with friends or family, or travel and see the world.
- You Will Live longer
Just because a few rock stars are living to a ripe old age despite their pasts of excessive drug use doesn’t mean most other people will. In fact, long-living individuals who continue to use abuse drugs and alcohol are an exception to the rule.
According to research funded by the American Addiction Centers, people who use hard drugs like cocaine, heroin, and methamphetamine even once a day could shave ten years off their lives. This dramatically increases based on usage. For instance, individuals who take these substances five times a day could reduce 30-50 years from their lives2.
Abusing alcohol is similarly risky. A Nordic study found that those that heavily drank reduced their life expectancy by 24-28 years3.
Rolling Back the Clock
Even if you have used drugs extensively in the past, getting and staying sober now can prolong your life. In addition to reducing the risk for diseases, people who stay sober: engage in less risky behaviors, are more financially secure and successful and have better mental health outcomes. All of these things can help you live a happier and longer life.
Nobody should have to go through addiction alone. If you or a loved one is dealing with a drug-related disorder, contact us now at 877-741-9098 to learn about a variety of recovery resources available to you.
Dregan, A., & Gulliford, M. C. (2011, December 21). Is illicit drug Use harmful to cognitive functioning in the MIDADULT years? A COHORT-BASED Investigation. OUP Academic. academic.oup.com/aje/article/175/3/218/105710.
The long-term effects of drug abuse and life expectancy. American Addiction Centers. (n.d.). https://americanaddictioncenters.org/learn/long-term-effects-drug-abuse/.
Westman, J., Wahlbeck, K., Laursen, T. M., Gissler, M., Nordentoft, M., Hällgren, J., Arffman, M., &Ösby, U. (2014, September 20). Mortality and life expectancy of people with alcohol use disorder in Denmark, Finland, and Sweden. Acta Psychiatrica Scandinavica. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4402015/.