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Searching for Sobriety in San JoseSan Jose is the third largest city in the state of California and the largest in the Bay Area. This vibrant city boasts gorgeous weather, beautiful landscapes and rich history. Known as “the capital of Silicon Valley,” San Jose is home to many major high-tech companies’ headquarters, including Cisco Systems, Adobe, eBay, as well as major facilities for companies such as IBM, Lockheed Martin, Hitachi, Hewlett-Packard, among many others. This rich and affluent area has excellent educational institutions, including several colleges and university, such as San Jose State University. Even in an area as this, the disease of addiction infiltrates and devastates many lives. Many people get stuck in the vicious cycle of substance abuse and find that they cannot stop using even if they want to. If you are struggling with addictive substances, reach out. Help is available.
The Disease of Addiction
The disease of addiction is truly cunning, baffling and powerful. The National Institute of Health estimates that one in every ten Americans struggle with substance abuse. Given that when one person becomes addicted the entire family unit suffers, the actual percentage of Americans negatively affected by addiction is substantially higher than even those staggering statistics.
According to the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration, SAMSHA, there are four stages of substance abuse, namely experimentation, ongoing use, dangerous use and finally dependence or addiction. It can be difficult to determine where a person falls on the spectrum and the best course of action is to consult with a professional.
Warning signs vary widely in terms of which symptoms are displayed and the severity of the symptoms. Signs may include irritability, hostility, arguments, loss of interest in activities, driving while under the influence, loss of control, lying about amount, frequency or other aspects of use and continuing to use despite negative consequences.
Addiction is a disease of the brain and therefore presents with significant issues of denial, guilt, shame and other issues that often prevent the user from recognizing the severity of the problem. The person may not truly t believe that his or her abuse of substances negatively affects others or self.
If you are concerned about a loved one who is struggling with addictive substances, consider staging an intervention to get the person headed in the right direction. An intervention is simply a conversation where the person is confronted about his or her using and behavior. It is a non-judgmental and loving way to show that you love and care for them, but emphasizes that something needs to change. Often the person who is the subject of the intervention will elect to enter a treatment center as a result of the intervention.
Road to Recovery and Rediscovering Yourself
Millions of people have found themselves in difficult situations, enslaved to drugs and feared that there was no way out. Through treatment and the guidance and support of Twelve Step programs these people have been able to overcome even the toughest problems and go on to live a life better than they could have imagined. Despair is simply a symptom of the disease of addiction and, with help, you too can triumph over your disease.
As you recover, you will discover a life full of happiness, healthy relationships and meaning. If you are struggling with substance abuse, reach out and get the help that will give you the life you deserve to have.