Frequently asked questions about addiction treatment

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Frequently asked questions about drug addiction

How did my loved one get addicted to cocaine? I thought they were smart.

Cocaine addiction does not discriminate based on gender, race, age, income, lifestyle, or intelligence. It does not discriminate at all. Cocaine addiction is not a choice, but rather an affliction. It is an illness, and like many illnesses, it can be treated with professional attention.

The Hader Clinic treats all people, from all walks of life. We create our treatment plans specifically for patients, ensuring that they are receiving high quality, personalised care. It doesn't matter who the patient is. All that matter is that they enter treatment for their addiction.

Is it true that you can't get addicted to marijuana?

That is categorically untrue. You can get addicted to anything that gives you pleasure, including marijuana. Dependence on marijuana is categorised as a substance use disorder — where patients are unable to stop taking substances, despite the negative physical, psychological, emotional, social, and spiritual effects of the drugs.

In fact, it is estimated that between 9 and 30 per cent of marijuana users will develop some substance use disorder. Marijuana is addictive because it rewards the user with pleasure; it is readily accessible, and is easy to consume in high amounts once a certain tolerance point is reached.

What's the safest way to take prescription medication without risking addiction?

The safest way to take any medication is precisely as the doctor ordered. Upping your dosage or decreasing the time between doses can be a slippery slope towards addiction. Like many other drugs, the more prescription medication you take, the more you need to feel its effects.

If you feel like you are becoming reliant on prescription medication, or you are no longer feeling its effects, talk to your GP. They'll be able to give you options to look at to ensure that you remain free from addiction to prescription medication.

Frequently asked questions about alcohol addiction

How do you determine what "problem drinking" is?


There are many different statistics and parameters used to determine whether someone is an alcoholic or not. At The Hader Clinic, we know that every patient is different. Instead of compartmentalising people by how much they drink, we look at their drinking behaviour.

Drinking can be a problem if it affects many facets of life. A patient can have a bad relationship with alcohol when they:

  • Try to hide their drinking habits from others
  • Drink early in the day, or before stressful situations
  • Black out from drinking, having not remembered what they said or did
  • Drink heavily while they are alone
  • Seemingly struggle with work, study, or family life without any apparent reason

There are many other signs associated with problem drinking. Treatment will largely depend on the addict and the scope of their addiction.

We identify alcoholics as those who have:

  • A dangerous preoccupation with the substance
  • Tried several times to quit and have been unsuccessful
  • Continued to use, despite the negative consequences

Can I be a functioning alcoholic?

Some people may not display all the traditional hallmarks of an alcoholic. However, when it comes to alcoholism, The Hader Clinic identifies that there is usually some facet of life that is affected.

  • Addicts can spend too much money on alcohol, affecting their finances.
  • Addicts can value alcohol over their personal relationships, leading to strain.
  • Addicts can struggle to handle drinking at events, leading to social problems.

In reality, the 'functioning alcohol' myth is a dangerous misconception. Referring to someone, even in jest, as a functioning alcoholic, means that they may perceive their problem as being less serious. This attitude makes addicts less likely to receive treatment if their addiction begins to spiral.

Do alcoholics always relapse?

Alcoholics indeed have higher chance of relapsing compared to other addicts. The conventional role of alcohol in society makes the temptation readily accessible.

However, that does mean that relapse is a certainty. Addiction is a lifelong struggle, and treatment must be continually revisited to ensure that it is being maintained and upheld.

At The Hader Clinic, we prepare addicts for their life in the outside world. We do this by offering them an Outpatient Relapse Prevention program that allows them to revisit our specialised treatment options as an outpatient. This ensures that they have the continual clinical support of highly trained staff, and the best possible chance of staying clear from alcohol long term.

Frequently asked questions about mental health

What are some statistics about mental health and substance addiction?


The comorbidity of mental health and substance abuse problems is a widely studied phenomenon. This hasn't always been the case. As we learn more about the influence that mental health and addiction have on each other, we can come to a greater understanding of the root causes of addiction.

Here are some key figures that paint a picture of just how interlinked mental health and addiction are:

  • Around 50% of individuals with mental health issues are affected by a substance abuse problem.
  • 37% of alcohol abusers and 53% of drug abusers also have at least one serious mental illness.
  • Of all people diagnosed as mentally ill, 29% abuse either alcohol or drugs.

Why do people with mental illnesses use drugs?


In short, drugs and alcohol are a coping mechanism. An ineffective one for sure, but a coping mechanism all the same. The self-medication of substances to treat mental health issues is extremely dangerous, and often leads to worsening of the original condition.

Mental illness can be challenging to diagnose, and can often go undiagnosed for an extended period. Because they do not have the therapeutic tools to deal with their illness, patients then turn to substances as a way of managing.

What are some ways that I should take care of my mental health?


Practising self care is extremely important for looking after mental health and wellbeing. Just as the body needs exercise and healthy food, the mind needs attention to keep it running healthily.

Here are some day to day things you can do to keep your mental health and wellbeing in check:

  • Connect with other people by reaching out to them
  • Remain positive through your actions and words
  • Do physical exercise and make sure you are eating well
  • Help other people when they need support
  • Get enough sleep each night
  • Develop healthy coping skills for your existing issues
  • Make time for meditation and mindfulness

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