There is a massive stigma of addiction and everything that surrounds it. Even in such modern times, where the importance of mental health has become engrained in our society, addiction still gets a bad wrap.
So, how you can deal with the stigmas that are surrounding addiction? Although it may take some time, but there are positive steps that can be made to step in the right direction.
We are going to give you some in-depth knowledge about how to fight and change these stigmas.
Fighting Stigmas of Addiction
Many people are afraid and distrustful of addicts. There is a stigma that addicts will steal from you, lie to you, and even hurt you. Unfortunately, even after that person achieves sobriety, the stigma can remain.
Yet, for some addicts, this stigma may not be the truth about themselves and their situations.
Kick-Off the Conversation
One of the best ways to break the stigma surrounding addiction is to have an honest conversation about addiction and what it is. Opening yourself up for discussion allows others to ask questions. Questions will enable them to understand what addiction is like for the addict.
It allows them to see that what they thought about addiction may not be accurate. An open talk also gives them a chance to understand how the recovery part of addiction works. How it works when it comes to relapsing and remaining sober.
Correct Misleading Facts
One of the most important ways to reduce the stigmas associated with the disease is to provide correct information to people. If you’re in a situation and hear someone reciting wrong facts about addiction, correct them.
The reason that stigmas exist is that people don’t know the facts of addiction. You should always speak up when you hear negative language or wrong information being given about addiction. Get the facts straight and eliminate the stigma.
Use Careful Language
When you’re engaging in conversations about addiction, you must use the correct language. One of the most insensitive things that can be done to an addict is to refer to them as a junkie or a fiend.
It’s important to remember that underneath the addiction, they are still human beings at the end of the day. And as an addict enters recovery, what they need most is the support (not judgment) of people around them.
Why Stigmas Can Be Damaging
Stigmas can be damaging because they are misleading. And, when people receive the wrong information, it can lead to addicts being treated poorly by people in society. Not only can addicts face rejection from their peers, but it can also cause a relapse. For some addicts, the rejection and isolation that they get from their family is a reason their addiction can continue.
For an addict that is in recovery, being rejected by others during a time where support is essential can lead them to a potential relapse. Much like people that face discrimination, daily addicts face discrimination as well. They may feel people staring at them whenever they enter a store or attend family functions.
Handling this type of judgment can cause the addict to withdraw from others, causing them to become depressed and anxious whenever they need to enter social situations.
How Stigmas Make Addicts Feel
One of the essential things when it comes to stigmas is knowing how it affects the addict. Understand that a person recovering from addiction has had to address many situations and emotions while going through the recovery process.
Some common emotions that addicts may feel are shame and guilt for the pain they’ve caused to themselves and others. On top of the shame and guilt they feel, it may be compounded when they have to face the people that have been affected by their addiction.
Healthcare and Addiction
One of the areas where the stigma of addiction may be high is in the healthcare field. Many addicts have had multiple stays in the hospital, whether it's because they sought medical attention for overdoses or went to the hospital to receive more drugs.
In some cases, an addict’s file may notate that they are an addict and can’t receive certain medications or prescriptions. Another issue with the healthcare system and how they deal with addiction is the availability of insurance to addicts. Healthcare companies may not be as ready to approve a former addict for insurance given their past issues with addiction and being reliable.
Life insurance is essential because no one wants to leave their loved ones without the resources necessary to take care of them once they’ve passed. However, if a recovering addict is searching for a life insurance policy, it may be challenging to be approved given their history.
Insurers must know and understand that you are in recovery and what your current situation is. If they know or suspect that you are using drugs, it’s almost guaranteed that you’ll be denied the policy. On the positive side, if an addict does have insurance, most insurance policies will cover some, if not all, of the rehabilitation treatment costs.
Talk with healthcare insurance providers about your situation as soon as possible.
Let’s Break the Stigma of Addiction
For an addict to have a better life, they need to consider treatment to help them have a better future. If you’re looking for a rehabilitation and treatment center in New Jersey, contact us today. Let us put our expertise to work for you and your recovery.