Codependency and Addiction Explained

Codependency and Addiction Explained

Healing and maintaining recovery from addiction is a complex challenge for anyone facing addiction struggles. When addiction and codependency occur together, achieving sobriety and maintaining lasting health and wellness can be even more complicated. 

What Is Codependency?

Codependent relationships are not limited to romantic partners. They can occur between family members, friends, and even co-workers. When people think of a codependent person, they often picture someone who is needy or dependent on someone else.  At a high level, this may be an accurate description; however, codependent relationships are often more extreme and can be more dangerous than everyday clinginess. 

Codependent relationships are best described as a situation where one partner or friend needs the other, who also needs to be needed. This is referred to as a cycle of codependency, and it can quickly lead to struggles with the codependent individual’s self-esteem and self-worth. Codependent relationships often include situations of physical and emotional abuse. When someone is codependent, it can be challenging to see the problems with the relationship and even more so to escape the relationship without the assistance of an outside party such as a mental health provider. 

How Are Codependency and Addiction Related? 

Codependent relationships are common in situations where one (or even both) people are struggling with addiction. Codependent behavior can be harmful to someone struggling with addiction because this behavior doesn’t ask or encourage the addict to change their behavior or, in any way, indicate their behavior has negative consequences. When a relationship involves codependency and addiction, the codependent partner often does anything they can to provide support to the addict despite knowing there could be harmful consequences.

Codependents are often referred to as enablers because they enable or make possible the negative behaviors of the addict. This may include helping the addict clean up after harmful behaviors, covering for them in the face of questioning from family and friends or helping the addict engage in destructive behaviors. Common examples of codependent behaviors include:

  • Helping the addict recover from financial challenges related to substance abuse
  • Cleaning up after the addict when they use or drink too much
  • Taking over the addicts obligations when they will not or cannot complete them
  • Making excuses or “covering up” for the addict in the face of problems related to substance use

How To Get Help With Codependency

Treatment for relationships that involve addiction and codependency is best when it occurs in a treatment facility designed to address co-occurring disorders. A co-occurring disorder or dual diagnosis condition involves struggling with addiction and a simultaneously occurring mental health condition.  At a treatment center like Relevance Recovery, you will work with a team of treatment professionals who understand how addiction results in maladaptive coping behaviors. They also have experience with how codependency and addiction are often co-occurring.

How To Get Your Loved One Help With Addiction

If you suffer from a substance use disorder, it is vital to seek help from an addiction treatment program. As part of treatment, you will learn more about the roots of addiction and how to manage triggers and potential relapse. In addition to seeking therapy for addiction at a skilled treatment center, it is important for codependent individuals to seek therapy to help manage their mental and emotional health needs as well. Once the individual suffering from addiction completes their treatment program, they will return home to their friends and family. If the family members who have been acting in an enabling capacity do not understand how to avoid codependent behaviors, the chances for relapse are more significant.

If you or a loved one are in a relationship where you are codependent, don’t underestimate the benefits of partaking in family therapy at a treatment center like Relevance Recovery. Understanding how codependent or enabling behaviors only further addictive behaviors for your loved one or family member can be integral to their recovery and lasting recovery. To learn more about how our programs can help with addiction and codependency, contact us today. 

The Link Between OCD and Addiction

The Link Between OCD and Addiction

Statistics on obsessive-compulsive disorder are challenging to find, and much of the available data is outdated. The most current data from the National Institutes of Health indicates as many as 1 out of every 40 adults in the United States have OCD. As many as 40% of those who struggle with OCD also have a substance use disorder, and many also experience symptoms of another co-occurring mental health condition. 

What Is OCD?

The Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders indicates OCD or obsessive-compulsive disorder is a mental illness characterized by overwhelming and unwanted thoughts and fears (obsessions) and excessive, irrational urges to do specific things (compulsions). If you struggle with obsessive-compulsive disorder, the emotional challenges you face go well beyond worry that you forgot to turn off the iron or lock the front door. Someone who meets the diagnostic criteria for OCD feels the overwhelming urge to act out certain habits or rituals repeatedly. It does not matter if they understand that the rituals or habits are undesirable, unnecessary, or serve no beneficial purpose. People who struggle with obsessive-compulsive disorder often realize their behaviors, thoughts, and actions are illogical; however, they are unable to stop performing them even if they know those actions lead to significant challenges in their day-to-day lives. 

Understanding the difficulties associated with OCD requires understanding the primary symptoms of the illness; obsessions and compulsions. There are multiple types of OCD that often have varying symptoms; however, everyone with an OCD diagnosis will experience obsessions and compulsions to some degree. Obsessions are thoughts or feelings that “tell” you that you need to do something. Compulsions, on the other hand, are actions or behaviors that are used to satisfy those thoughts. For symptoms to be diagnosed as OCD, obsessions and compulsions must last for an hour or more each day and lead to significant interference with day-to-day life. 

What Is Addiction? 

Addiction is a complex disease that affects each person in unique ways. Addiction (or substance use disorder) is not a choice, and it is not a moral failing. It is an overwhelming and challenging struggle that affects the lives of millions of people across the nation each year. Symptoms of addiction include the inability to reduce or stop using a substance despite wanting to or understanding the known dangerous impacts of ongoing use. 

When you struggle with addiction, you have an intense and overwhelming focus on obtaining and using your substance of choice, whether drugs or alcohol. With time, this focus takes over and inevitably interferes with day-to-day functioning. Without comprehensive addiction treatment, ongoing substance addiction leads to changes to the brain, including those that control decision making, behavior, memory, learning, and judgment. 

What To Do if You Have OCD and Addiction

Although prevalence rates are difficult to verify, statistics on OCD indicate it is one of the most common mental illnesses in the United States. The symptoms of OCD can lead to overwhelming emotional and psychological difficulties. It is not at all uncommon for someone suffering from OCD to turn to drugs or alcohol to self-medicate their symptoms. Unfortunately, this practice only provides a brief window of relief before the substance wears off and symptoms return. The desire to continue feeling freedom from symptoms leads to repeated use whenever obsessions occur. In time, this will lead to dependency and addiction. 

If you have OCD and addiction, it is vital to seek treatment at a treatment center skilled in addressing dual-diagnosis conditions. At a dual-diagnosis treatment program, trained medical and mental health providers will work with you to design a treatment plan that addresses both conditions simultaneously. It is essential to overcome addiction and learn safer, healthier ways to manage OCD symptoms to avoid potential relapse in the future. Contact our admissions team at Relevance Recovery today if you or a loved one would like to learn more about how dual-diagnosis treatment can help you overcome OCD and addiction. 

Is There Online Drug Rehab?

Is There Online Drug Rehab?

Millions of people across the nation struggle with drug addiction. Recent data from the Substance Abuse, Mental Health Services Administration indicates as many as 21 million Americans older than age twelve meet the diagnostic criteria for a substance use disorder. Sadly, fewer than 10% will ever seek or receive the professional care and support they need to overcome addiction. There are several reasons, including stigma, cost, and ease of access to professional addiction treatment nearby. 

What Is Drug Rehab? 

There are thousands of drug rehab programs across the nation providing essential treatment services to help addicts overcome addiction. Drug rehab offers someone addicted to drugs the opportunity to seek professional treatment and support while safely and successfully working towards sobriety. There are many different treatment levels of care, and each program provides varying models of care. It is important to understand your treatment needs and goals when deciding where to seek treatment. Our caring and compassionate team at Relevance Recovery will work with you to design a treatment program based on evidence-based treatment approaches designed to help you overcome addiction. 

Is There Online Drug Rehab?

Technology has spread into almost every element of our daily lives. Medical, mental health, and addiction treatment are no exception. Online rehab programs are addiction treatment programs that provide treatment services through online platforms or video conferencing services such as Skype, FaceTime, or WebEx. Like in-person treatment, online drug rehab can be either a one-to-one or group format. Online programs also use similar behavioral treatment models to in-person programs. This helps to ensure participants in an online program receive the same level of treatment support and have the opportunity to develop necessary coping skills, which are vital to relapse prevention after treatment ends. It is essential to seek a reputable online drug rehab where treatment is provided by trained professionals who are affiliated with licensed addiction treatment programs. 

The Benefits of Online Drug Rehab

Although face-to-face treatment remains a vital component in the treatment and recovery process, online rehab services are highly beneficial for many. Not only does online drug rehab provide access to treatment for those who may not be able to travel to attend rehab, but they also serve as a complementary treatment component for many aftercare programs such as sober living environments and other programs that help addicts new to recovery maintain lasting sobriety. 

Online drug rehab is often more accessible than some outpatient treatment options. Most online programs are available on a 24/7 schedule with flexible treatment sessions and access to interactive video sessions and other online treatment supports. This level of flexibility ensures you can access treatment whenever it is most convenient for you. It also opens up access to treatment for those who may not be capable of attending treatment at an inpatient or intensive outpatient treatment program. However, it is important to remember that online rehab is not meant to replace in-person treatment, especially if you require detox support or if you have never participated in an addiction treatment program. Online programs cannot provide the same level of medical or mental health support during the detox process. 

Online programs also provide a high level of privacy not always available in a face-to-face setting. Online treatment does not require participants to leave their homes or interact with others as part of the treatment process. The online rehab environment can provide treatment while still allowing you to remain comfortably at home. 

If you or a loved one would like to learn more about how online drug rehab can help you continue working towards lasting sobriety, contact Relevance Recovery today. Our admissions team is here to explain not only our addiction treatment program options but how we integrate online rehab into our programs to help you continue progressing towards lasting recovery.