Substance abuse and drug addiction are two of the most commonly treated disorders in therapy. On its own, substance abuse causes changes to the way the brain functions, which leads to intense cravings, abnormal movements, changes in behaviors and personality, among other things.
After prolonged, repeated use, the body can develop a perceived tolerance to the substance, and at that point, it becomes an addiction.
During the period of intoxication, a substance user can experience extreme euphoria, heightened senses, intense pleasure, relaxation, and other symptoms.
Once SUD becomes an addiction, it profoundly changes the way the brain produces and distributes the neurotransmitter dopamine. Not only is the brain unable to produce normal amounts of dopamine on its own, but this change in dopamine production can make it difficult to function without the influence of the substance. This can in turn, make it difficult to break the vicious cycle of addiction as the affected individual can experience withdrawal symptoms. To satisfy the body’s need for the substance, affected individuals can resort to risky behaviors to get that need met.
The RTT therapist directs the client to the reason why they became addicted and alleviate the cause.
Vickie Barkley is a practitioner of RTT who has trained directly under Marisa Peer and can work with clients struggling with addiction. To learn more about how RTT can alleviate symptoms associated with SUD and addiction, contact Vickie for a discovery call.