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Cravings

A craving can best be described as an intense desire for a particular thing. A craving that is associated with addiction is an abnormally strong craving that results in the compulsive seeking and use of a substance, even in the face of negative consequences.  Cravings are the central motivators in drug addiction, and can be extremely difficult to control without the support of a drug treatment program. When an addict experiences a craving for a drug, there life becomes centered on obtaining and using the drug. Nothing can outweigh a drug craving as a motivator, even the threat of personal loss or incarceration. Many addicts that have experienced cravings have committed crimes and even abandoned their children to access drugs.

Signals called cues can be sounds, smell, sights or thoughts that can activate the brains "go" circuits which can in turn create cravings. Cravings for drugs and alcohol can be stronger than any other type, including those that are experienced in the desire for food or sex. Cravings are a typical experience in the drug recovery process.  Because drug cravings are intense and frequent during the detox process, it should always take place at a treatment facility as a part of a complete rehab program. Drug or alcohol cravings can be both physical and psychological and can be accompanied by feelings of anxiousness. The physical symptoms that can occur due to this anxiety can include palpitations, rapid breathing and obsessive thoughts about needing the substance to alleviate the discomfort. If a person does not have the support of a drug treatment program during the detox process, the defense mechanism of denial will kick in, serving the purpose of distorting reality about the addiction, and the individual will more than likely reach for the drug and the addiction will resume. In a drug treatment program with a high rate of success in treating addiction, an individual will receive support and counseling during the detox process. This support will go a long way in helping them to effectively deal with the cravings and to finally be free of the drug addiction.

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