The Untold Secret of the Root Cause of Addiction

I also believe that addiction is a choice, and it is not caused by an incurable brain disease, a genetic predisposition, learned behavior or a chemical imbalance. However, before I describe “The Square Root of Addiction” I want to walk you through each of the existing theories related to addiction. Currently, there are four main theories relating to the cause of addiction, which include the biological, or disease model, the psychological model, the sociological model and social learning model. I believe that most of these theories do play a role in addictive behavior. However, they mostly occur as a result of the addiction or in conjunction with it, and not as the root cause! These theories represent the current views regarding addiction, which are coveted by the medical community. Bear in mind that these are only theories, and none of them have been conclusively proven to be the cause of addiction.
The biological theory suggests that habitual users of drugs or alcohol have a biological abnormality that causes them to become addicted. The theory suggests that certain individuals are genetically predisposed to addiction by a faulty gene or perhaps a chemical imbalance in the brain, which renders addiction an incurable disease!

The psychological theory views drug or alcohol addiction as problematic behavior. In other words the individual uses alcohol or drugs to enjoy the effects that these substances have on the mind and body.

The sociological theory suggests that societies which produce higher levels of inner tensions such as guilt, stress, suppressed aggression and conflict have higher rates of addiction. Furthermore, the model suggests that societies that are permissive of and encourage such behavior have higher rates of addiction.

The Social learning theory suggests that drug or alcohol addiction is a learned behavior and continues because the user gets some desired outcome from it. The model also suggests that these behaviors are learned by being exposed to certain stimuli; people, places, things, thoughts and feelings.

The sociological model does touch briefly on the fact that emotional issues are related to addictive behavior. However, this theory seems to bridge the relation directly to the societal breakdown in some groups where higher levels of inner tension and permissive behavior are prevalent. I believe that it is not the emotional issue itself, but rather understanding the cause of the emotional issue that is of the utmost importance. The psychological model suggests that the addict displays problematic behavior by using drugs or alcohol to enjoy the effects the substance has on the mind and the body. Logically speaking, I would venture to say that people using drugs or alcohol do enjoy the effects they have on the mind and body. However, that is not the reason they have chosen to use those substances. People choose self destructive habitual behavior not to enjoy the effects but to mask the pain of underlying emotional scars caused by family dysfunction. The social learning model suggests that addiction is a learned behavior resulting from the stimuli of people, places, things and thoughts. I would not dispute the fact that repeated exposure to this type of behavior could induce a learned behavior. However, this theory can not explain why some individuals exposed to the same stimuli would opt to just say no! I believe that difference hinges upon whether an individual has the need to mask the pain of underlying emotional scars and their personal level of coping skills. While some of the abovementioned models touch on the fact that emotional issues play a role in addiction, none of them have addressed the underlying cause of these emotional issues. Are these emotional issues caused by the stress factors of work, relationships, financial difficulties and every day life, or are they caused by something that runs much deeper? Why is that some can cope with the stresses of everyday life while others can not? Personality dictates the level of coping skills that each of us possess, allowing some to endure a greater degree of stress and others to turn to the need to mask their pain with addictive behavior. The pain of these emotional scars goes much deeper than the every day stress factors and stems from issues of family dysfunction. From a very early age we learn a system of beliefs from our families and sometimes these beliefs serve us well, and some times they are dysfunctional. When you consider that eighty five percent of all families are dysfunctional, you can begin to concur that more often than not these beliefs are self limiting to our well being and happiness. A cocaine addiction and Family Dysfunction a case-control study in southern Brazil is one of the few that I have seen that has explored the effects of family dysfunction. The conclusion of the study was that a point could be argued for the need of family intervention as a whole and for continued research. I beg to differ with this conjecture, which concludes that intervention is the solution to the addictive behavior. Intervention gives the very people responsible for the dysfunctional behavior an opportunity to lambaste the addicted individual with a barrage of shame and guilt while ignoring their own inadequacies.

Plain and simple; the reason that people choose addictive behavior is to mask the emotional pain of the underlying scars caused by family dysfunction.

Best wishes,

David Roppo

Champix Varenicline – The one-of-its-kind Stop Smoking Treatment

Champix Varenicline is a stop smoking medication developed by Pfizer pharmaceuticals after years of extensive research. The unique medication, Champix boasts the ability to alleviate painful nicotine withdrawal symptoms, a dreaded factor that dissuades many smokers from even thinking of quitting. Furthermore, Champix makes smoking less pleasurable.

What is Champix?

Champix is rated as one of the most effective smoking cessation drugs on the market today. It was approved by the FDA in 2006. In clinical trials, 44 per cent of Champix treatment users were seen to successfully quit at the end of the 12-week regimen. This shows a marked level of success in comparison with 29.5% of those put on Zyban and 18% on a placebo. However, Champix does not guarantee success.

Champix contains the active ingredient Varenicline that works on the nicotine receptors. Champix Varenicline is a unique quit smoking medication as it works in two ways –
3. It reduces the smoker’s craving for nicotine by binding to nicotine receptors in the brain, thus reducing the symptoms of nicotine withdrawal.
4. Secondly, it reduces the satisfaction of smoking.

Champix is rated better than other quit smoking aids like Nicotine Replacement Therapy that makes use of nicotine patches and gums as it does not contain nicotine and is therefore not addictive. Anybody can benefit from Champix if they have determination to quit. Champix works irrespective of the factors like how many years you have been smoking and how many cigarettes you have been smoking in a day. People who have been smoking over 60 cigarettes a day over several years have been able to quit smoking because of Champix. It has been reported that people who have tried and failed in their attempt to quit smoking with the help of other smoking cessation aids like NRT have been able to quit because of Champix. No wonder, Champix is currently the most prescribed smoking cessation aid today.

Dosages of Champix

• Always take Champix, subject to the doctor’s recommendation.
• Before beginning the Champix treatment your doctor will ask you to set a quit date. You will need to begin your Champix dosage a week before your quit date so that your body gets used to Champix.
• Champix dose comes in 0.5mg (white) and 1.0mg (blue) tablets forms.
• For the first 3 days, your doctor may recommend you the lower (0.5mg) dose once a day.
• For days 4-7 day you will need to take 0.5mg, Champix twice daily.
• After a 7 day period, the dosage of Champix is increased to 1mg twice daily for 12 weeks. This is the recommended dosage of Champix, as approved by the European Commission.
• It is important not to skip a dose. Equally, it is imperative that you do not double your doses.
• In the case you experience any side effects, inform your doctor, who may be able to recommend a new dose. But please do not alter the dosage without first consulting a doctor.
• Your doctor may also recommend a lower dosage of Champix if you are suffering from kidney disorders.
• Champix treatment will ordinarily last for around 12 weeks. Your doctor may recommend further 12 weeks of treatment if desired.
• To minimize nausea, take Champix with a full glass of water after a meal.

Side effects of Champix

As with all prescription medicines, Champix also comes with a number of side effects. However, the majority of side effects are mild to moderate, and may not affect every one who uses the treatments. Common side effects of Champix include nausea, headache, difficulty sleeping (insomnia), and abnormal dreams. Some of the less common side effects of Champix are sleepiness or fatigue, dizziness, change in taste and dry mouth, disturbances of the gut such as diarrhea, constipation, vomiting, indigestion, abdominal discomfort or bloating, flatulence or increased appetite.

Some patients have also reported changes in behavior, agitation, and depression. It is vital that you consult your doctor if you notice any such side effects. Also let your doctor know if any of the Champix treatment becomes bothersome.

In any case Champix treatment is not recommended for use by pregnant women or those under 18 years of age. Epilepsy patients or those who have a history of mental illness, such as depression should also not use Champix treatment. Inform doctor about your medical conditions in detail before using Champix treatment.

Marijuana Withdrawal Problems – Preparing to Stop Smoking Weed

Many regular and heavy pot smokers go through withdrawal when they first quit weed. The detox period tends to last between 10 days to a month, and is worst in the beginning. Quitting marijuana can produce both physical and psychological withdrawal symptoms. The most common symptoms are discussed in detail below.

Anxiety and Restlessness – All dressed up and nowhere to smoke!

Anxiety is one of the biggest hurdles in the first couple weeks of quitting. The anxiety that is felt during quitting is usually minor relative to a full blown panic attack – but it is constant! You need to be prepared to deal with emotional and mental state you will be in for the first couple of weeks when you quit smoking. Some of you will know what I am talking about. I have searched through couch cushions, the garbage, and all of the other places just to find a roach or a little nugget to feel at peace. I describe it as missing something, and needing to get back to a stoned state so that you can relax again. You may notice you are holding a lot of tension and not breathing well in the first week. Keeping yourself busy will help some, but it won’t make this feeling go away.

Insomnia and Racing Thoughts

Insomnia is a big deal in the first couple days of not smoking cannabis. There have been times where I have not slept for a couple of days. This always passes. If smoking weed makes you relaxed and tired, not smoking can make you stress out and your mind race. It can take a while for your sleeping patterns to get back to normal. Usually within a month you will have more regular sleep patterns and get a full nights sleep. It is important to keep a regular sleep / wake schedule when going through marijuana withdrawal.

Vivid Dreams and Nightmares

As any pothead knows, marijuana seems to interfere with the dreaming mechanism of consciousness and either keeps you from dreaming, or keeps you from remembering them. When you give your body a break from marijuana, the dreams come back – and sometimes with a vengeance. If you haven’t dreamed in a weeks, months, or maybe even years, this aspect of marijuana withdrawal is very strange. Memories from years ago may resurface in dream form. I remember having a dream of classmates from high school that I hadn’t seen in over 10 years!

Nightmares are common when you go through marijuana withdrawal. These can be incredibly vivid and involve people and places you know. I have had several dreams where I thought the world was about to end and I have woken up in a sweat before.

Some people dream about marijuana, and some smoke marijuana in their dreams. This is completely normal and part of the detox process.

Loss of Appetite

One of the most common symptoms of marijuana withdrawal is a lack of appetite. This usually lasts for 3 to 4 days after the last time you smoke. You can almost think of it as the opposite of the munchies. Fast food doesn’t taste the same with Mary Jane!

Don’t be surprised if your appetite shrinks, or that you aren’t interested in food for a couple days. You may even lose some weight when you go through cannabis withdrawal. The lack of appetite can be a part of a more general feeling of sickness that has been described as low-level flu like symptoms. Very few people report diarrhea or nausea, but it does exist for some of us.

When I quit smoking weed, my diet improved. I have experienced the loss of appetite, and even the runs during the first week of quitting.

The Sweats – Did someone turn up the heat?

This is one that I have experience only a couple of times after not having weed for few days. I think it caused from the stress, tension and anxiety of not smoking weed. I do know that after smoking (succumbing to temptation) the sweats dissapear immediately. One trick when dealing with this, is to think of it as cleansing and that your body is cooking out the THC and your are speeding up your recovery. If you are going to get hot, might as well enjoy it!

Are you sick of being a slave to weed?
Have you tried and failed to quit before?
Do you want to avoid withdrawal when you quit?