Treating addiction is a priority when addressing the loneliness epidemic. Seeking help from the right treatment center to beat loneliness and addiction is one effective way. Having someone by your side during such difficult times can make it easier to seek help in the first place. Loneliness is often one of the first warning signs that there are other issues at play.

drug addiction and loneliness

I’m grateful for this opportunity so serve and give back what was freely given to me. As an alumnus of Friendly House, Julie knows first-hand how critical quality treatment is in the process of recovery. In 2011, with the help of the Friendly House staff, the 12-step program of AA, the love of her partner, and the friends she made in the house, Julie was able to build a solid foundation in her own journey of sobriety. As an educator with 25 years of classroom experience, Julie has learned to face challenges and obstacles with grace and dignity. When she left the teaching profession, she was determined to find her next passion. Julie knew she wanted to work in the non-profit sector, and it had always been her dream to someday work at the place that had set her free.

The Center for Epidemiologic Studies Depression Scale

By working together, families can begin to heal from addiction and find support in the process. People who are suffering from addiction tend to isolate themselves, then further exacerbating their feelings of loneliness. This isolation can lead to a number of negative consequences, not only for the individual experiencing addiction but also for their loved ones. There are a number of reasons why isolation is such a significant part of the addict’s experience.

The conversation with Tamsin in June was specifically audio recorded at her request, and excerpts are printed here with full consent. The authors declare that the research was conducted in the absence of any commercial or financial relationships that could be construed as a potential conflict of interest. Opioids are narcotic, painkilling drugs produced from opium or made synthetically.

The Effects of Addiction and Isolation on Loved Ones

Loneliness is a common life experience and changes with age (Nicolaisen and Thorsen, 2017). Some studies demonstrated through empirical research that loneliness, depression, and anxiety are inextricably linked (Richardson et al., 2017; Michalska da Rocha et al., 2018). A significant correlation analysis found a positive correlation between loneliness, anxiety, and depression (Jing et al., 2012; Ostovar et al., 2016; McHugh Power et al., 2020). A previous study showed loneliness had a significant mediating effect on anxiety and depression (Ebesutani et al., 2015). Based on the existing literature, it appeared there was a close relationship between loneliness and anxiety and depression, which may be a mediator variable worth considering. Therefore, this study hypothesized that loneliness mediates the relationship between anxiety and depression in substance abusers in males (H2).

The isolation that has arisen from social distancing measures, and the collateral harms outlined above, have made such solitude all the more necessary and yet, with the disruption to daily life, all the more difficult to achieve. Isolation can, as such, lead to increased or riskier substance use, partly because the social relations and interactions that offer purpose and meaning are unattainable. For those in recovery, too, the draw toward substances is often coupled with boredom, loneliness, and feelings of hopelessness, with everyday life ceasing to feel meaningful. Clouded senses of the future are further exacerbated by economic precarity (24, 28–30, 34) and experiences of subjugation (31, 33) that provoke a sense of the present as endlessly, and inescapably, repeating.

Americans are lonely and it’s killing them. How the US can combat this new epidemic.

Emily had her own struggle with addiction and began working in treatment in 2013 at Beit T’Shuvah where she helped develop their Extended Care Program. She spent two years working for The People Concern with the unhoused population. Her service work connected clients to social services programs, and provided education on harm reduction and medication assisted treatment (MAT). Effective prevention and loneliness in sobriety intervention strategies must focus on building a strong support network, teaching healthy coping mechanisms, and promoting overall well-being to mitigate the negative impact of both addiction and loneliness. Addiction is a serious disease that makes you feel unable to stop using drugs. When you first develop addiction, you might find that drugs indeed help you feel less lonely and more social.

Understanding the relationship between the two can help therapists and other medical professionals provide their clients with the most effective tools for overcoming addiction. Once you’ve been addicted to a drug, you’re at high risk of falling back into a pattern of addiction. If you do start using the drug, it’s likely you’ll lose control over its use again — even if you’ve had treatment and you haven’t used the drug for some time. During the intervention, these people gather together to have a direct, heart-to-heart conversation with the person about the consequences of addiction.

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