Drug Use Education.org
Myth #1: Drug addiction is
First of all, "addiction" is only repetitive behavior. In reality, developing a dependency is due to poor education and lack of effective life management. Addiction is repetition of behaviors that grow with us. Just as the planets continue to revolve around the sun or as people continue to eat... work... sleep... in patterns, drug usage is the same. In fact, it's easier to stop a drug habit than it is to stop working. How is this possible? Simple: if most people stopped working, they wouldn't earn a salary and wouldn't have the necessities in life such as food, shelter, clothing. Unless someone is paid to use drugs -- fat chance that ever happens -- giving them up can be accomplished easily by finding other activities. Many people control their drug use by refusing to buy drugs. For many of them, this means that they don't use or abuse drugs. Of course, that makes no sense. But by depending on using the drugs of others, they are able to keep their drug use in check.
If someone drinks an occasional glass of wine, does that mean their brain will become altered. NO! If they occasionally use a drug does that mean their brain will become altered? NO! If someone uses a drug everyday, does that mean their brain will become altered? Possibly they could deplete neurotransmitters such as dopamine. With methamphetamine, brain matter increases in those who become chemically dependent. The results of this can be unpredictable with people becoming unable to work, or people working all the time. In response to the question.
Drug usage is voluntary when people lead a full life and are not masking other problems. The body knows when it's had enough; the mind doesn't. It has to be disciplined.
Myth #2: More than anything else,
drug addiction is a character flaw.
FALSE! Drug use or that what is called drug addiction (addiction being repetitive behavior) is not a character flaw, and it is definitely NOT a brain disease! Drug abuse is also neither of these. Compare any type of behavior that is repetitive. Let's take gambling. There are people who go to casinos everyday. They say they can't live without it. Can they? Well, if the casino burns down one day, they might feel lost, but they will eventually find something else to do. If you lose your job, you will feel lost, but you will find another job. If a drug is discontinued, will it be any different? Well, if you have a chronic disorder that is being treated, you will have to find a replacement. If you are using the drugs recreationally, something else will take it's place. Eventually, a new drug or other activity will replace it. Of course, if the drug is available but you just can't get it because of the stigmas in our society, it is well worth fighting to get something. We live in an era of anti-drug disorder. Just think of this as the witchcraft trails in 1692 Salem, only instead of 20 people getting needlessly executed, the war on drugs has impacted the nation and the world. In the US alone, about 100,000 have died from the war on drugs and the ignorance it breeds.
The fact is, it shouldn't be necessary for a casino to burn down or for you to lose your job or for a drug to be turned into a controlled substance. We are forced to fight in a war with no common sense. Mali Einen from Stanford Hospital's Sleep Disorder Clinic has used GHB every single day for 15 years now. Does that mean her brain changed? No one claims that she has an addiction. Why? Because Mali is a married heterosexual white female over 25 who works in a hospital. There lies the difference.
As for the drug being the single most powerful motivator in a drug abuser's existence where he or she will do almost anything for the drug. That's normal human behavior. What about the ice cream cone or piece of cake that motivates us? What about the car we want to buy? What about someone's dream house? The more you work at getting something you like, the more you're going to get it. And this has nothing to do with changing an individual's brain. It takes about 20 to 30 years. Some of these effects in the brain are actually favorable.
Myth #3: You have to want drug
treatment for it to be effective.
Again, these are all myths. The truth is that if you are comfortable using a drug, why on earth would you need treatment? That's a hoax. It is true that virtually no one wants drug treatment because they don't feel they need it. Treatment is for the small subset who react indifferently to a particular drug and feel that they cannot control themselves from taking it. We are in a war. In this war, anyone who uses or abuses drugs is an enemy. It makes no sense but unfortunately we live in a society that's filled with fear.
Scientific studies show a very high recidivism rate for those who go through treatment that becomes a revolving door until the clinical force you are dealing with realizes that you are like everyone else and not the one fraction of a per cent that actually benefits from their "treatment programs". Meanwhile, the people who run these treatment carnivals have no idea what they are doing or even why they are doing it, except they are saving you... Actually, they are costing you something you like to do. For example, imagine that you found pleasure swimming, sailboating, camping... etc and that's what you liked doing on your free time, then if someone came along and told you you needed to get treatment for these things, how would you react? Well that's how you should react if someone comes along and for no good reason offers you treatment for something that brings you pleasure. Granted, you should be mindful that if your whole life becomes doing any one of these things and it effects your career or job, or family life, then you DO, by all means, need counseling and have no reason to argue not to.
Myth #4: Treatment for drug
addiction should be a one-shot deal.
The problem here is that our healthcare system doesn't really care about your health at all. If they did, they wouldn't let you fail. Imagine -- if you will -- people could buy a car from a car dealer and use that car without having driver's education, a license, inspection and registration of the vehicles we drive. Just imagine if there were no laws on which side of the street you drove, how much alcohol you could drink before driving... there would be no speed limits, if you had to get someplace really fast you could just dart through red lights and stop signs -- if they even existed -- and when you got fuel for your car it would be quality du jour... well that's what drug users face every day without education. Now if cars were like drugs, how long would it take before you wound up in a major automobile accident? Probably the first time out!
With Drug Use Education (DUE) you could go through your entire life without once needing a treatment program, providing that you obeyed the laws and reported any problems with your drugs to your doctor. And that is not a myth, but something you can count on.
Myth #5: We should strive to find
a "magic bullet" to treat all forms of drug abuse.
We should strive to develop EDUCATIONAL programs to teach the citizens of this country -- particularly the youngest members of our society how to use drugs and PREVENT drug abuse.
As for how we handle the population of current abusers, I agree with the answer here. Harm reduction is the logical model that has worked very well in other nations. And harm reduction stresses that as one size shoe does not fit everyone, no one approach can be used to treat those who abuse drugs. Different individuals had different situations. One might be using drugs responsibly another might be abusing drugs. Even among those who abuse, there are many reasons why people might abuse drugs different than others.
Myth #6: People don't need
treatment. They can stop using drugs if they really want to.
There is one thing that must be expressed very clearly about addiction and that it either simply does not exist or it only develops because of the way a drug is used or comes to abuse a drug. Some users can stop using any time they want. My understanding is that people who use or abuse a drug becuse they enjoy the side effects and have developed a reward system have it very different than those who use the drug for other reasons.
MYTH #7: Treatment just doesn't
Treatment often doesn't work because treatment often excludes the real problems which have notthing to do with drugs. For example, many people who become alcoholics don't go out of their way to convert to alcoholism like it was some kind of religious faith. They use alcohol as the dirt under which they bury the real issues. Any drug can achieve the same thing. Children whose parents are overly demanding may find it easier to deal with their parents, but once they have stopped using the drug and are being treated for a drug disorder, the treatment will not work unless the underlying problem is resolved. If it doesn't get resolved, the user/abuser is going to be driven back to old habits as is the person on the other end going to be driven back to their old habits. The problem with parents is that they think the are going to get returned to them a child with all the solutions. The parents never realize that they too must change their behavior.
The association here with criminal activity , HIV infection, and employment are totally obscure.
MYTH #8: Nobody will voluntarily
seek treatment until they hit ‘rock bottom.’
Both are true. The problem is that society forbids drug use, therefore people who use and abuse drugs won't admit it when they have a drug problem because they haven't admitted to themselves that they are drug users or drug abusers! It's as simple as all that. You can't have a drug problem if you won't admit to yourself you use drugs. Also, society frowns upon people who have drug problems. Why? If it's as normal as all that, and it is, society should embrace drug users and drug problems. In order for this to work we must:
If we use the DMV Driver Education as a model, we can produce a society of healthy drug users. Rather than ignorant drug abusers, drug misusers and those with anti-drug disorder.
So why call it treatment? Drug use doesn't have to be a disease. It could be a normal part of living if you just allow it to be. Fear is, after all, our worst enemy. As FDR stated: "There is nothing to fear but fear itself."
MYTH #9: You can't force someone
By looking at drug use as a disease, we are going to produce a sick society... looking at it like a crime, we will produce a criminal society. But it is normal. You may not be able to force someone into treatment, but the threat of losing their license for a detox will bring them in. The key here is to produce centers that are clean; where the staff is nice. Detox should be a friendly experience; not a r Treatment"
MYTH #10: There should be a
standard treatment program for everyone.
Today's programs are very caustic and unrealistic. They are driven by individuals who exhibit anti-drug disorder behavior. No one ever gets to the root of the problem because the fear is all about drugs. Some "treatment" programs involve the family, but in the end, the family doesn't come to realize their own disorder which is typically anti-drug. Until anti-drug disorder is defined, it is worthless to pursue drug treatment because it is all one sided. Tomorrow, drug use will be a normal human behavior as it is becoming in many nations that are thriving very well once the fear of drugs has been eliminated. Our culture is pharmacologically backwards.
MYTH #11: If you've tried one
doctor or treatment program, you've tried them all.
There should be commonality in a detox and other programs. These must be designed so that they can be offered as canned solutions. The DUE proposal indicates that detox will be like going in for an oil change... it shouldn't be all that complex. If someone is having further issues, they should be referred to a counselor. We can make this as complex or as simple as anyone would like to have.
MYTH #12: People can successfully
finish drug abuse treatment in a couple of weeks if they're truly motivated.
Detox could take less than an hour, perhaps. It can even be done from the drug user's home.
MYTH #13: People who continue to
abuse drugs after treatment are hopeless.
The war on drugs is hopeless.
Zero tolerance is hopeless.
Our draconian drug laws are hopeless.
The fact that 30% of our prison population comprises non-violent drug offenders is hopeless.
The fact that we can legally sell cigarettes -- a deadly useless substance -- and not medications that are controlled substances for those who need them is hopeless.
The fact that gasoline will never be a controlled substance no matter how many lives it consumes while medication -- such as methamphetamine -- used by children as young as six is unavailable to people who need it... GHB... marijuana... whatever substance is restricted from the members of our society to use is hopeless...
If we don't turn this situation around, we are hopeless, helpless, and lost and we don't deserve our place in the food chain.
Whoever heard of a life sentence for a first-time offender dealing marijuana? If we cannot treat life -- all life -- with reverence especially when that life has done nothing to harm or devalue anyone or anything, then we are impeding the people of our planet from evolving in the Electrochemical Age. We are committing a far graver offense than genocide by repressing our society from moving forward. We are extending the Dark Ages into the present and hindering the people of the earth from becoming a Class 1 Civilization as we should be at this time.
Shame on the leaders of the United States of America for turning our chemical-driven society upside down in this disgusting, greed-filled modern day witch-hunt! Every body has a brain, it's about time that we put them to good use.