1. There is no addict.
There is only addiction but even that is a response to over self-medication. To relieve emotional or physical pain.
2. The most common of the former is trauma in all forms and untreated ADD both of which lead to degrees of depression and hopelessness.
3. True treatment is recognizing what the underlying condition(s) are and addressing them simultaneously while weaning off the medically assisted treatment for the addiction.
For example, the person with opiate dependence and untreated ADD would be provided with education, an ASRS scale, skills building regarding diet, exercise, organization, sleep etc. and would also be provided a stimulant. This would be in conjunction with slow tapering of Suboxone which is the safest and best opiate substitute.
There are two concepts about trauma that are underutilized:
4. The first is the utility of low dose Lithium (150mg or less). The usual dose for Bipolar or suicidality is 600-1200mg. At a dose of 150 or less, a patient is free from all adverse effects while getting the benefits of improved mood, hopefulness, constructive rather than self-destructive behavior. The patient is also taking something natural which improves all neurotransmitters and does not cause sexual side effects like most synthetic antidepressants. I can provide an extended article on the importance of low and microdose lithium. It is nothing less than Fluoride for mental health.
5. The second concept is to see trauma as a funnel, not a cycle. With each generation, humanity receives and displaces less pain than the previous one. By looking at it as such, we can find both blame AND forgiveness for those that have wronged us. Once this is accepted by the survivor, they can become a “thrivor.” Someone who sublimates their pain to help themselves and others.
6. To become addicted to life, to love and work, peace and progress. Because despite the institutional and familial betrayals of the past, we all have to work together to become symbiotic with this planet.