looking through a rainy window at a man with his head down from substance use disorder symptoms10% of Americans will experience a substance abuse disorder in their lifetime while another 4% struggle with a substance abuse disorder each year. Drugs and alcohol are psychoactive substances that have the potential to cause physical and psychological addiction, which is a chronic and incurable condition. Worse yet, anyone can develop a substance abuse disorder, regardless of age, race, gender, or race.

When you struggle with a substance abuse disorder, symptoms continue to get progressively worse until you reach out for help. Even the recreational use of drugs and alcohol can lead to abuse and dependency. The stages of addiction can progress rapidly, which is why early treatment for a substance abuse disorder is so necessary.

Take a look at substance abuse treatment programs in Dallas, TX.

What is a Substance Abuse Disorder?

Substances like alcohol, opiates, and stimulants are mood-altering substances that change your brain chemistry. When you develop an issue, you compulsively abuse your substance of choice despite wanting to stop or experiencing negative consequences. During a substance abuse disorder, you will continue to use your drug of choice even if it damages your relationships or causes financial problems.

During addiction, your brain associates your substance of choice with pleasure, which alters your pleasure and reward center. Whenever you use, your brain releases more neurotransmitters than it should, leading to an imbalance. Once the effects of intoxication end, you have a depletion of neurotransmitters. The neurotransmitter reduction intensifies cravings, which can make it hard to stop using.

Your brain doesn’t just associate your drug of choice with pleasure, either. Anything that reminds you of your drug of choice is also connected to pleasure, meaning anytime you’re exposed to triggers, which can be people, places, or things, you experience cravings. Eventually, your body can become entirely dependent on your drug of choice to function. Physical dependence can lead to painful and uncomfortable withdrawal symptoms if you immediately stop using it.

How a Substance Abuse Disorder is Treated

A substance abuse disorder is a chronic mental health condition that has no known cause or cure, which makes treatment essential to your recovery. The earlier a substance abuse disorder is treated, the easier it is to recover. A substance abuse disorder can be treated either in an inpatient or outpatient setting. Both treatment options can offer the following:

Most inpatient programs last for at least 28 days, which may or may not include detox services. Residential treatment ensures that you have 24/7 access to medical professionals, which can make it easier to begin your recovery. Inpatient also offers more structure than an outpatient program, allowing you to focus solely on your recovery.

Outpatient programs are less time-intensive and allow you to return home each night, which enables you to continue working or going to school during treatment. One of the most important benefits of an outpatient treatment program is that it serves as an excellent follow-up to inpatient care. Participating in an outpatient program helps you maintain a robust recovery-focused network, which is especially important during the early stages of recovery. Outpatient programs can meet anywhere from three to seven days a week, depending on your specific needs.

Reaching Out for Help Today

If you or a loved one is struggling with a substance abuse disorder, you can feel overwhelmed, frustrated, and trapped. Contact The Right Step Dallas to take the first step in your recovery journey. Call us today at 1.844.768.1161 to find out more about your treatment options and our substance abuse disorder programs.