Celebrities such as Demi Lovato, Dennis Quaid, Simon Pegg and more have become much more open about addiction – and it’s all mainly been to help combat stigma. The American Society of Addiction Medicine (ASAM) explains that the language we’ve used in the past as a society has been incredibly harmful to people recovering. “Junkie”, “addict”, “stoner”, “crackhead” and more can take out the very real, very human experiences that are behind the substance abuse. We’ve come a long way to combat stigma – but there’s always more work the needs to be done.
A 2017 study published in the Journal of Bioethical Inquiry explored just how those in addiction recovery experience stigma and how their personal stories align with society’s “outside view” of what addiction is really like. One person stated: “I suppose they think you’re the sort of person going to steal their VCR…[because] of that typical image of a drug addict as some sort of homeless, stinking kind of shambling person who can barely speak and stuff, and I was never like that even when I was using, but that’s the impression.”
The Drug Policy Alliance explains that the language we use matters – and, unfortunately, many movies and people of status have made addiction out to be a sort of moral failing, whereas these individuals need love and support. Research even implies that healthcare professionals may hold stigma against those recovering from addiction, which can make it even more difficult to seek help and recover the way a person needs.
Thankfully, our society has become more open to talking about what it’s really like – and the more we can understand that those who battle addiction are also human beings, the sooner we can begin providing treatment the right way.
If you’re ready to begin taking great strides towards your health and wellbeing, speak with a professional from Alta Loma today. Mental illness should be taken seriously and, if not treated early on, more severe conditions can arise. The best way to promote happiness and health is to seek help – and to begin using effective interventions for treating the problematic symptoms a person is experiencing. Don’t wait any longer to seek the help you need. Please call Alta Loma today – and you’ll be surrounded by a healthcare team who truly cares about your recovery. 866-457-3843