At HUM, we are an integrated health care team so you will receive health care services from a number of different health care providers, such as nurses, physicians, and psychologists, based on your needs. We take a holistic approach to health; therefore we will be exploring biological, psychological, social, and spiritual dimensions, rather than looking at health issues or diagnoses in isolation.
Addiction - Involving Alcohol
Addiction is a chronic brain disease and is influenced by both genetics and environment similar to other chronic diseases such as diabetes. Addiction can manifest in many ways including use of alcohol and the focus at HUM is to address Addiction is Addiction. This means that whether a person uses alcohol, drugs, or engages in compulsive behaviors, such as gambling, shopping etc., these are not mutually exclusive and represent different manifestations of the same disease.
Addiction involving drugs is a chronic medical condition that requires assessment and treatment. With Addiction involving drugs, the ability to make healthy choices becomes no longer possible. The drug(s) begin to start controlling your life, making life more unmanageable. With Addiction, drug use is a symptom of what is happening in the brain and the person is seeking escape, relief and/or reward. Unfortunately there is no off switch and there is an ever increasing desire for more.
In our society today, increasing numbers of people are prescribed opioids for physical health symptoms. Unfortunately, without proper monitoring and appreciation of the risk of Addiction, what starts off as pain management can uncover unmanageability with Addiction involving opioids. Wherever the journey with opioids started, often by the time people are seeking treatment they are finding themselves using more frequently, in higher doses, and with less benefit than they had experienced in the past.
Eating disorders, or Addiction involving food, is a chronic medical condition that requires assessment and treatment. With Addiction in this area, the ability to make healthy choices is impaired and compulsive behaviours control the individual’s life, leading to feelings of unmanageability. The eating disorder is a symptom of what is happening in the brain and it leads the person to seek escape, relief and/or reward. While there is no off switch to stop this process completely, with recovery and treatment, a high quality of life is possible.
Addiction - Medical Detoxification/Withdrawal Management
People who have been using substances for some time go through withdrawal symptoms that are a result of the body and brain trying to maintain balance despite substances coming on board and then readjusting when substance use is curtailed or stopped. Most people can handle withdrawal symptoms on their own or with some psycho-social support. However, there are some instances especially with Addiction involving alcohol and other drugs that require monitoring and prescription drugs administration in a supervised setting.
Gambling Addiction (otherwise known as Addiction involving gambling) is Addiction that is manifested by a compulsion, craving, impaired control or lack of restraint in gambling despite it causing negative consequences to the person’s physical, mental, relational and financial well-being. Gambling Addiction may seem to exist in isolation or recognized to be happening along with other problematic behaviours, including substance use, sexual acting out, or more. With proper assessment and treatment, change and high quality of life are possible.
Sex Addiction (otherwise known as Addiction involving sex) involves symptoms of unmanageable behaviour and seeking escape, reward and relief with sex. Typically there is a great deal of time, effort and resources put into obtaining and participating in the behaviours. There are significant consequences to these behaviours and there is an inability to stop without help in spite of the desire to do so.