Why is Abstinence Important for Recovery?
Abstinence is a key to recovery for drug addicts and alcoholics. Addicts share a compulsion to use and a lack of control over use. When people give alcohol or another drug to their body, the body wants more. Someone with a substance problem then takes even more of the drug until it runs out or they pass out--or in some cases die. Abstinence stops this destructive cycle.
Abstinence in recovery allows the brain to "defog." It takes about a year of abstinence for the brain to completely clear, and maintaining a drug-free brain is the only way to help it clear.
Abstinence in recovery is also necessary because use of one drug can trigger the use of another. For example, a cocaine addict under the influence of alcohol will be more likely to use cocaine than when abstinent. Substances such as alcohol decrease inhibitions and impair judgment and decision making, compromising a person's commitment to recovery.
Effects - Problem Signs - Getting Help - Healthy Choices -Quiz
Prevention Main Page - CAS Main Page