Addiction is a treatable disorder, and research has led to the development of evidence-based methods that can help people stop using drugs and resume productive lives. Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT) is a valuable treatment tool because it can be used for many different types of addictions, including food addiction, alcohol addiction, and prescription drug addiction. CBT can help individuals recognize their unhealthy behavior patterns and learn to identify triggers and develop coping skills. It can also be combined with other therapeutic techniques such as Rational Emotional Behavior Therapy (REBT) and Contingency Management (CM).
REBT helps people recognize their negative thoughts and provides ways to combat feelings of self-defeat, while CM reinforces positive behavior by providing tangible rewards. Although there is no definitive cure for addiction, it is possible to manage the symptoms of drug use and prevent drug abuse. Addiction is a lifelong illness, just like mental illness, and former drug users should not experiment with substances other than the one they sought treatment for. Anthony Bourdain was criticized by some for using alcohol and cannabis recreationally decades after he quit heroin and cocaine, but this criticism may not be valid.
Addiction is treatable, and with the right support, individuals can build a new, substance-free life. However, “cure” is a specific term - addiction cannot be cured in the same way as other illnesses. To understand whether addiction can be “treated” or “cured”, it is important to understand what addiction is. The scholarship almost brainwashed people into believing that once an addict is always an addict and that complete abstinence is the only path to recovery.