Monday, June 30, 2008


"Commonly we’ve said ‘relapse’ when people start using drugs again.

I guess the coincident ‘remission’ would be when people aren’t using drugs…. but
I think that’s not really the best use of the term.

We wouldn’t say that someone with diabetes has relapsed because now they’re not doing their diet and exercise or taking their medicine right.

We would say they were 'non-adherent to care-plan'...

and if they were in ‘relapse’, what that means is their sugar is high, in spite of treatment.

So I think that what remission SHOULD mean, in addiction, is that they are without the original symptoms of addiction, which are those low dopamine symptoms in the mid-brain and that’s the way I talk about it to my patients.

They’re in remission as long as they’re feeling well and when they stop feeling well it’s time to look at their medical situation BEFORE they start using the drug."

That's a quote from the interview of Dr. Howard Wetsman that I mention here

As someone who DID 'relapse' after a significant amount of clean time (20 months)...I can tell you that it was a PROCESS.

I mean...I wasn't fine and happy...then out of the blue, just 'decide' to start gambling again.

It built up.

The thoughts.....turned into desire....and eventually a craving.....and...there was a gradual return to 'old' ways of thinking....justifying it....rationalizing the unrational....maybe i could control it THIS time.....I DESERVE it...blah blah blah

the problem is.....once that begins happening....the PHYSICAL changes are beginning to take place....and those PHYSICAL changes...make it difficult for us to intervene on our own behalf.

THe longer we let it go....the worse off we become...the more difficult it is to seek help.

Ya know....when people stop attending g.a. meetings...the assumption is often that they are 'back out there'....and.....I have seen many people show up at meetings, in a great deal of pain, having gotten caught up in the cycle again.....

that is probably the norm...

after a long absense, if someone DOES show up...they are suffering.

What we NEED to to learn how to take care of ourselves...BEFORE we end up in hell.

If, at the first signs of 'relapse' (addictive thinking) we take steps...then we can stay 'adherent to care-plan' ('drug' free)...

This is do-able.

No comments: