addiction crisis in the usa
The United States addiction crisis continues to escalate, 19.7 million American adults age twelve and older struggle with substance abuse. According to the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Service Administration under 11 percent seek and receive treatment. Substance abuse treatment centers continue to base the treatment on the twelve steps of Alcoholics Anonymous, but with no evidence to support Alcoholics Anonymous as a successful treatment. Should rehab facilities make a monstrous profit by simply offering fellowship as a cure for addiction when addiction is classified as a disease.
Majority of addiction treatment facilities are based around the 12 steps of Alcoholics Anonymous. The twelve steps of Alcoholics Anonymous are a group of spiritual principles, which if practiced as a way of life can expel the obsession to drink and use drugs, enabling the suffer to become happy and usefully whole (Foreword). Founded in 1935 by Bill William and Bob Smith 85-year-old principles have never been updated or challenged. Alcoholics Anonymous is a twelve-step path to recovery, with each step referencing the higher power. 1: admit powerless over drugs and/ or alcohol, 2: accept that a higher power, in whatever form, will restore sanity, 3: turn your life over to the higher power, 4: take a moral inventory of yourself, 5: admit to s higher power the nature of your wrongdoings, 6: accept that higher power will remove your character defects, 7: humbly request the higher power remove your shortcomings, 8: list people you have hurt and make amends, 9: make amends to those people unless it will harm them, 10: continue to take a personal inventory and when you are wrong, admit it, 11: use prayer and meditation to connect to the higher power, and finally 12: carry the message of AA to other addicts and continue to practice the twelve steps daily. Because AA is anonymous limited studies and surveys have been done, showing little to no evidence of a success rate. The New York times shares limited statistics, stating between 8% to 12% remain sober one to five years, and 40% of individuals drop out within the first year (Richard A. Friedman).
With no evidence to support the treatment of AA, rehab centers are making a monstrous profit. Treatment facilities revolving largely around AA are $15,000 to $26,000 for a thirty-day inpatient program, more exotic treatment centers can run into the low six figures. Today's rehabilitation programs are majority driven for profit and owned by individuals with no experience in drug treatment. The largest and most expensive treatment center, Passages Malibu. The for-profit addiction treatment facility located in Malibu California founded in 2001 by Chris Pax, a former real estate developer with no formal training in medicine. The five Passages locations spread throughout California share the belief that drug, and alcohol dependency is not a disease. Instead, the dependency is a result of the following causes: chemical imbalance, unresolved events from our past, beliefs you hold that are inconsistent with what is true, and the ability to cope with current conditions (Passages Malibu). The non-twelve step holistic treatment centers nor sober living homes are licensed medical facilities.
Simply offering a fellowship as a cure for addiction is not enough. Since the 1930's the United States views drug addicts as morally flawed and are people who lack willpower. These views have created stereotypes in society. In response rather than treating addiction as a health problem, the emphasis is on punishment in place of prevention and treatment. Like cancer, heart disease and diabetes, addiction is defined as a disease. Medical associations including the American Medical association and the American Society of Addiction Medicine. Many believe addiction is not a disease, in fact the belief is, the individual chooses to abuse drugs and alcohol. The initial use perhaps is a choice, however, once the brain has been changed by addiction experts believe the individual loses control of their behavior.
Simply offering a fellowship as a cure for addiction is not enough. Choice does not determine whether something is a disease. Heart disease, diabetes and some forms of cancer involve personal choices like diet, exercise, sun exposure, etc. A disease is what happens in the body as a result of those choices (Center on Addiction).
Like other disease addiction should be treated with medication. NAD, or nicotinamide adenine dinucleotide is a naturally occurring co-enzyme of niacin that helps cells in our bodies producing energy. An individual who abuses drugs and alcohol their natural amount of NAD is depleted. It is also said that people who naturally produce less NAD are more likely to develop an addiction and potentially a cooccurring disorder. Excessive use of drugs and alcohol depletes the body natural storage of NAD, making it impossible for the brain to receive the same energy from breaking down food. NAD therapy provides three key effects: it flushes out the drugs in the system, curbs cravings and lessens the pain of withdrawal making recovery easier physically and mentally, lastly, it allows the body to produce energy more naturally without side effects a combination of NAD and regular therapy.
The years of research show that drug abuse is a brain disorder that should be treated as that. Treatment may need several components to ensure a patient's full recovery.
Center on Addiction. Center On Addiction. 14 April 2017. 05 08 2019.
Foreword. A.A's General Service information . New York : Alcoholics Anonymous , 2012.
Passages Malibu. passagesmalibu.com/addiction-treatment/. 2019. 1 8 2019.
Richard A. Friedman, M.D. The Mew York Times . 5 5 2014. 7 August 2019.