Throwing a Lifeline to an Addict 

“Judge tenderly, if you must.

There is usually a side you have not heard, a story you know nothing about,

and a battle waged that you are not having to fight.”

– Traci Lea LaRussa

I seriously doubt that anybody, anywhere, at any time ever said “I want to be an addict!”

Prescription drugs can be used to treat an issue like chronic pain, recreational drugs may be

used, initially at least, to fill an emotional void, both can lead to addiction.

At some point, the human body can alter itself so that it needs to be replenished with whatever

substance is the subject of the addiction and this  as a chronic brain disease.

If a loved one, or even you yourself have become an addict, don’t judge that person too harshly;

and know there are ways to beat it.

Bring in the Pros

Throwing a Lifeline to an Addict 

Something like a minor caffeine addiction can be dealt with fairly easily with one’s morning coffee.

I think we all know at least one person (maybe we ARE the person) who should not be approached

until after that first cup of joe.

For more serious problems, we may need to involve trained professionals from .

When is it the right time to call for help?

That can be difficult to answer as everybody deals with their addiction and symptoms in a unique way.

However, there are some common behaviors that can serve as warning signs, such as:


*A change in physical appearance

*A change in personality such as becoming secretive or belligerent

*A change in lifestyle like problems with employment or suddenly dropping a favorite pastime

*Suddenly broken interpersonal relationships

*Sudden financial hardships


These, along with others, can alert us to a loved one in danger.

Sometimes, the addict themselves may be fully aware they have a serious problem.

However, whether due to embarrassment over the stigma attached to dependence or the intense

psychophysiological side effects that need to be alleviated, the stricken person cannot reach out

for help.

That’s when we need to step up for them and send up a signal flare.

Kicking It

Throwing a Lifeline to an Addict 

Once the problem is identified and acknowledged, treatment can begin.

Addiction typically has two components: physical and psychological.

The psychological recovery can begin with a qualified professional psychologist or psychiatrist

(who as an M.D. can also prescribe medications that might be necessary).

The physiological treatment has two branches that can be used exclusively or in combination with

one another.

Pharmaceuticals—Two of the more well-known medications, thanks to the slew of advertising,

are the nicotine gum and patch to help one quit smoking.

Another well-known pharmaceutical agent is methadone which is used to help in the detox regime

of an addict.

Throwing a Lifeline to an Addict 

Homeopathies—Remember, many of our current prescription medicines came about because

of uses of the herbs and plants found in nature.

The first antibiotic came about when that a certain mold inhibited

the growth of the bacterium Staphylococcus aureus.

For millennia now, many cultures have used roots, leaves and flowers to treat the various ailments we

humans are prone to get.

One note of caution, even those these are “just plants,” they also have the potential of reacting and

interacting with any medicines we might be taking.

Always discuss any herbal or other O-T-C remedies with one’s healthcare provider.


“If a loved one, or even you yourself

have become an addict, don’t judge

that person too harshly;

and know there are ways to beat it.”


Caring Not Cursing

Throwing a Lifeline to an Addict 

In the end, it’s all about getting someone we care for the help they need.

No matter what kind of idiot or fool that someone may call an addict, it is highly probable they have

already called themselves that, or worse.

If someone feels they can offer help only with a side of recrimination, that is not “help.”

It would be much better for that person to sit in a corner and keep their thoughts locked away inside

their head.


Have you or a loved one suffered from addiction?

Share your thoughts and comments with us.