The Issues: Substance Abuse and Addiction

addiction, substance abuse, alcoholism, drugs, treatment centers, rehabs, north jersey, advanced heath and education, drug treatment facilities


Addiction is an issue that touches almost every American life. Whether we have struggled with addiction or know someone who has, or is still struggling, addiction is something that affects us all. There are many types of addiction, and this post focuses on alcohol/substance abuse and addiction.

Here are some statistics from the 2010 National Survey on Drug Use and Health:

  • In 2010, there were an estimated 22.6 million Americans over the age of 12 that were current or former illicit drug users within a month of when survey was taken…this is about 8.9% of the population over 12 years of age.
  • 10 million individuals aged 12-20 admitted to being drinkers, 6.5 million of whom said they were heavy drinkers, 2.0 million of those 10 million said they were binge drinkers.
  • Over 6 million children in America have at least one parent with a drug addiction.
  • Since 1980, the number of deaths related to a drug overdose has risen over 540%.
  • Drug abuse and addiction costs employers 122 billion dollars in lost productivity, and another 15 billion dollars in health insurance costs.
  • Since 1990, the number of individuals who illegally take prescription drugs has risen by over 500%.

There are many more statistics, and they are just as dreadfully astounding. Seeking treatment can be tricky at best, and a bureaucratic nightmare at worst. Treatment centers can range from places that not only treat the addiction itself but also the underlying causes, to places that resemble an assembly line, where patients are pretty much just detoxed, given a few outpatient resources, and released to fend for themselves.

Let’s be honest for a moment. In the sense that a person suffering from depression does not choose to be depressed, not one person I have met who has struggled with addiction actually looked at their drug of choice and said “Yeah, let me become addicted to this and throw away my life.” Not one person I know conscientious made the choice to become an addict. Some treatment centers realize this, and work to not only help the patient break free of the addiction, but to address the causes of that addiction, seeking to find the answers to questions like “Why did you start abusing drugs/alcohol/etc?”

Advanced Health and Education in North Jersey is one such treatment center. Their website is informative and in-depth, providing not only information about their facility, but also resources, articles, and links not only for addicts themselves, but for families, friends, and loved ones. While the center does not do detoxing, they work with patients to equip them with the tools to live a drug/alcohol-free life after they leave the facility. An average stay lasts from 30-60 days, during which the patient learns to identify the reasons behind their addiction, developing relapse prevention strategies to help them maintain a healthy, happy lifestyle that does not include drugs. They also offer a program specifically designed for the families of those affected by addiction, which includes discussions and counseling, and developing strategies to address issues that can be triggers for the patient, so that when the patient leaves the program, these situations and triggers can be met head-on and dealt with so that the patient reduces the risk of relapse. After leaving the facility, patients have a detailed aftercare plan to arm patients with resources and tools to better their odds of not relapsing.

If you or someone you know struggles with an addiction, and you’re within the Tri-State area, I highly suggest checking out Advanced Health and Education’s website. Even if you don’t live within the geographical service are, check out their website anyways, as it really has a lot of beneficial information that everyone can use, not just people looking to receive treatment.

If you yourself are dealing with addiction, you need to know some things. Addiction doesn’t have to rule over you. Addiction does not mean you are a bad person, or that you or your life is a waste. Nothing could be further from the truth. As long as your heart is beating, as long as you are able to breathe in and out, your life still holds so much promise. I understand that you may be in a lot of emotional pain. I understand that maybe you feel like drugs or alcohol are the only things that can take away the pain you may be feeling. But it’s important to know that drugs and alcohol do not discriminate…they may dull the pain, but they’ll mute everything else, too. I promise you, there are ways to cope with that pain, ways to deal with those issues that haunt you, ways that don’t involve a bottle, needle, or pipe. No matter how far you feel you have fallen, it is never too late to climb your way out, and life out of the abyss is beautiful. You can learn to weather the storms, knowing that there are brighter days ahead. Hope is never lost, and no matter how horrible you may think you are as a person, there is always room to change, to blossom, to grow…to shine your life with the brightness you were born with. There is always the chance and opportunity to illuminate your path. You have to want it, though. To be honest, it’s not easy, and there will be times when you have to fight with all your strength…but know that life can be beautiful, and the best things in life are always worth fighting for. You are always worth fighting for. Love yourself enough to give yourself that chance. As a fellow human being, I love you, and I believe you are worth a clean, healthy, addiction-free life. Always.

Disclaimer: This is a sponsored post for Advanced Health and Education Treatment Center in Eatontown, NJ, for which I received a monetary compensation. However, as with all reviews, I did extensive research into the center, and had I not been truly impressed with what I found, I would not have agreed to write the post. All opinions expressed in this post are 100% my own honest opinions, and are not the opinions of Advanced Health and Education Treatment Center, nor are they the opinions of any other entity/person other than myself.


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