Addiction is a condition that results when a person ingests a substance (e.g., alcohol, cocaine, nicotine) that creates pleasure but continuous use becomes compulsive and interferes with ordinary life responsibilities, such as work,
relationships, or health. Addiction is a complicated disease involving an inability to stop taking a substance or carrying out a particularly damaging behavior. It can lead to a range of adverse psychological, physiological, and personal effects.
People use drugs or alcohol to escape, relax, or reward themselves. Over time they can make you believe that you need them to enjoy life, or that you can’t cope without them, which can gradually lead to dependence and addiction.
Let me raise a few questions for us to think about as we deal with addictions both as tolerance or withdraw.
a) Do you use more alcohol or drugs over time?
b) Have you experienced physical or emotional withdrawal when you have stopped using? Have you expe rienced anxiety, irritability, shakes, sweats, nausea, or vomiting? Emotional withdrawal is just as significant as physical withdrawal.
• Limited control. Do you sometimes drink or use drugs more than you would like? Do you sometimes drink to get drunk? Does one drink lead to more drinks sometimes? Do you ever regret how much you used the day before?
• Negative consequences. Have you continued to use even though there have been negative consequences to your mood, self-esteem, health, job, or family?
• Significant time or energy spent. Have you spent a significant amount of time obtaining, using, concealing, planning, or recovering from your use? Have you spent a lot of time thinking about using? Have you ever concealed or minimized your use? Have you ever thought of schemes to avoid getting caught?
Romans 7:21-25 and Proverbs 23:29-35 give us a clear basis to rethink our ways to avoid addictions.
May God bless you.
Rev. Francis Osire