Taking The First Step In Recovery & Treatment

Taking The First Step In Recovery & Treatment

Most recognize the first step in recovery as admitting they have an addiction. But the decision to stop can be easy to ignore - and hard to take action.

Recovery is a journey, and it's unlikely an individual will go straight from denial to treatment for substance abuse. There are actually 5 stages of change, starting with precontemplation and ending with maintenance.

Recognizing Addiction Is A Problem

Admitting a problem with addiction is considered to be the first step to recovery.

In reality, change begins with precontemplation, which is marked by defensiveness, endless justification, and even denial. In this stage, people tend to ignore their addictive behaviors and focus on the positive effects of their substance use.

When an individual begins to observe how their substance use is affecting everyday life, an awareness that there is an issue, and admits they have a problem, they are in the contemplation stage.

This realization doesn't come easily for some people. Most of the time, the consequences of actions do not manifest themselves until a long time after the action was taken. Stopping can therefore be hard to recognize - and easy to ignore.

Denial can be broken by a dramatic event like being arrested, losing a relationship, or being fired. It gradually affects others, causing strained relationships and concerned family and friends.

In order to overcome substance abuse, individuals need to ask themselves one critical question: do I have a drug or alcohol problem? Even though it can be painful, it is worth taking an honest look at what life is like when you use drugs or drink alcohol.

These resources can help:

Making A Change

It is not enough to simply recognize a problem. There may be many friends, family and loved ones encouraging individuals toward recovery, but they alone must take the first actionable step.

  • Abstinence
  • Attending self help groups like AA or NA
  • Seeing an addiction counselor
  • Exploring treatment options
  • Establishing a sober support network

If you or a loved one need help with substance abuse, Care Addiction Center can help you along every step of the way. Call our Illinois rehab today at 630-402-0144.