Long term rehab facilities are known for their ability to help clients move forward in life. This progression can take a variety of forms. While behavior and overall health can change immensely, rehab facilities will never change somebody’s core personality.
The Drug and Alcohol Identity
The phrase “that’s the drugs talking” is commonly used to describe the behavior of somebody who is in active addiction. Drugs and alcohol can make physiological changes in the brain that affect the reward center. This may lead to behavior that seems out of character or unusual. Excessive alcohol and drug use can appear to change one’s personality.
Common uncharacteristic behaviors in those who use drugs or alcohol are usually seen on a spectrum. The longer an individual has been using drugs or alcohol, the more extreme these behaviors often become.
Uncharacteristic behavior for somebody in early addiction may include:
- chronically late
- withholding information
- changes in appetite
- changes in sleeping patterns
Uncharacteristic behavior for somebody in the middle stages of addiction may include:
- socializing with a different crowd
- mood swings
- missing school or workdays
- disinterested in hobbies that were once enjoyable
Uncharacteristic behavior for somebody in the late stages of addiction may include:
- unpredictable anger
- making promises that can’t be kept
- prioritizing drugs or alcohol over family and friends
- suicidal ideation
- increase in fighting
- increase in avoidance
The Difference Between Behavior and Personality
Personality encompasses many qualities in an individual. It is primarily fixed at birth, but can be shaped by patterns of thinking and feeling. Personality can be shaped by genetics, biology, and the psychological construct of the person. How someone visualizes the world and those around them is often because of personality.
Behavior constitutes the actions that derive from pleasure, duty, humility, love and other motivating factors. Behavior determines an individual’s performance, not the person themselves. While behavior is frequently influenced by personality, it can also be influenced by external forces that drive the reward centers of the brain. Drugs and alcohol can greatly impact the behavior of any individual regardless of where they grew up, who their parents are, their education, or their job.
Drugs and alcohol can change the brain’s neurotransmitters over an extended period of time. These changes can create the motivation to behave in ways that many individuals wouldn’t otherwise. These changes can happen while drugs or alcohol are actively being used. They can also happen when an individual is waiting to use the drugs.
Taking away drugs or alcohol can restore some of the brain function that was there before addiction, but is often not enough. Just because drugs or alcohol are removed from the equation, does not mean cravings and old behavior will disappear. When staying in a rehab center long term, trained professionals can help in the process of recovering from drugs and alcohol.
What Will Change After Long-Term Rehab?
Long term rehab is an effective way to receive a variety of treatments for drug and alcohol use disorder. Rehab can offer recovery tools that help with both the biological and psychological aspects of addiction. Through support groups, medication, and counseling, these facilities can often restore the authentic self.
Both the body and the mind can become healthier and stronger during recovery. With the absence of drugs or alcohol, appearance is often transformed in the early stages. Hair and skin often look healthier. Many people notice weight loss from the absence of alcohol. With balanced nutrition, the body can begin to work properly again.
Recovery can help many individuals with coping skills. Behavior issues revolving around irritability or anxiety can be greatly reduced in rehab. Healthy coping mechanisms usually benefit many different kinds of relationships and can increase confidence.
Without a drug or alcohol addiction, the brain can focus on other rewards. After a sustained amount of time without these substances, most individuals can find happiness in the activities they used to enjoy or find new ones. A new outlook on life is common for those leaving a long-term rehab center. While an individual’s core personality does not change, a new sense of energy, optimism, and physical health are likely.
If you are struggling with a drug or alcohol use disorder, removing yourself from the situation is often extremely helpful. By focusing on multiple different approaches, you can get the help you need in a variety of forms. For more information, our counselors are available 24 hours a day. Please call 833-820-2922.