In 2003, an estimated 21.6 million Americans aged 12 or older, or 9.1 percent of the total population, were classified as having substance dependence or addiction. Addiction cuts across all walks of life, as well as socio-economic and cultural backgrounds. Addiction affects men and women, teens, adults and elders, from the poor to the middle class to the affluent, from the rural towns to the suburbs to the cities, from ordinary families to the most loving homes.
Drug addiction is a brain disease. Every type of drug of abuse has its own individual mechanism for changing how the brain functions. But regardless of which drug a person is addicted to, many of the effects it has on the brain are similar: they range from changes in the molecules and cells that make up the brain, to mood changes, to changes in memory processes and in such motor skills as walking and talking. And these changes have a huge influence on all aspects of a person’s behavior. The drug often becomes the single most powerful motivator in a drug abuser’s existence. In some cases, he or she will do almost anything for the drug. This comes about because drug use has changed the individual’s brain and its functioning in critical ways.
Addiction is a serious health problem. There is great risk (cost) to ignoring the problem. If untreated it can progress and even be fatal. Like many other illnesses, drug addiction typically is a chronic disorder. As with all complex diseases, environmental risk and protective factors interact with genetics to determine the course and outcome of the disease. Identifying and modifying environmental factors that contribute to health and disease are a large part of Quan Yin’s mission.
Quan Yin’s Addiction Program
Different people have different drug abuse-related problems. In addition, they respond very differently to similar forms of treatment, even when they’re abusing the same drug. As a result, people with addictions need an array of treatments and services individually tailored to address their unique needs. Quan Yin’s Addiction Program is designed to do just that.
We begin by developing a personal treatment plan based on a thorough assessment of the individual’s problems. Then, we combine a variety of methods tailored to address each person’s specific needs, which typically includes a combination of behavioral counseling, body work, such as Reiki and acupuncture, nutritional counseling and nutritional supplementation, detoxification and herbal support. Research indicates a minimum of 90 days of treatment to have a beneficial effect, and we recommend a commitment to participating in the program for at least that length of time. In all recovery programs the best predictor of success is the length of treatment. Treatment does work and is worth the investment.
Addiction is a disease, not a matter of will or morality. Since addiction is treatable, people with substance abuse problems can and do get better. There is hope. With sufficient help and personal commitment, virtually anyone can recover.