Recovering from Addiction: Is it Possible?

Addiction is a treatable disorder, and research has shown that it is possible to recover from it. The brain can recover from addiction, as evidenced by the image of a healthy brain on the left and the brain of a patient who abused methamphetamine in the center and right. After one month of abstinence, the brain looks quite different from a healthy brain; however, after 14 months of abstinence, levels of the dopamine transporter (DAT) in the brain's reward region (an indicator of dopamine system function) return to near normal function (Volkow et al.).Recovering from an addiction is not easy, even after treatment. It is important for family members and friends to understand what their loved one is going through in order to provide support and help them meet their sobriety goals.

It is not enough to simply stop using; one must create a new life where it is easier not to use drugs or alcohol. Those who have successfully recovered from addiction have worked hard to understand what led them to substance abuse and how they can prevent it from happening again. Many rehabilitation centers and support groups offer family therapy as part of a person's recovery plan to help repair and strengthen relationships that have been damaged by addiction. Recovering from addiction is not easy, but with the right support and guidance, it is possible.