The Connection Between Crohn’s Disease And Addiction

The Connection Between Crohn’s Disease And Addiction

Crohn’s disease is a painful condition that affects the digestive tract. This debilitating condition causes severe inflammation to the digestive tract, which can often lead individuals to self-medicate. At the Crosby Clinic, we have a dual diagnosis program that counters co-occurring conditions in order to help patients heal in a variety of ways.

More About Crohn’s Disease

Crohn’s disease is a type of inflammatory bowel disease (IBD) that has no cure. This condition causes immense distress to a person’s digestive tract. The small intestine and colon can remain inflamed for extended periods, or subside temporarily.

Although symptoms can be mild, they can exert extreme pain at times. This condition can also lead to life-threatening complications if left unaddressed. Individuals that are unable to find any relief for their condition through conventional methods often turn to self-medicating. This helps them deal with both physical pain and emotional symptoms.

This is generally not recommended for obvious reasons; however, self-medicating also increases the risk that individuals with this chronic condition will have more severe inflammation and intensified symptoms.

Dealing With Crohn’s And Addiction

Crohn’s and addiction can both play a part in masking symptoms of one another. When combined, these conditions make it extremely difficult to target the root issue in order to determine an adequate and suitable line of treatment. Individuals with Crohn’s disease may try to blame the side effects of addiction on their condition in order to hide that they have a substance use problem.

Depending on the type of substance that is being abused, both diseases can exert similar symptoms. Individuals dealing with Crohn’s and addiction often experience weight loss, suppressed appetites, diarrhea, cramping, dehydration, malnourishment, and a variety of other problems. Crohn’s sufferers may try to blame the side effects of the drug abuse on it to keep others from asking questions.

These side effects can be life-threatening, especially when they are compounded with addiction. Both diseases are known to increase depression, anxiety, and suicidal thoughts.

How Are These Conditions Related?

Combining alcohol abuse with Crohn’s disease is extremely harmful. The digestive tracks in Crohn’s sufferers are already irritated enough. This is further exaggerated by alcohol consumption, which can cause extensive damage in the digestive tract. Although opioids can be used to treat Crohn’s disease, individuals are at risk of developing an addiction to these medications if they are not used properly.

Factors Of Addiction That Can Aggravate Crohn’s Disease

Lifestyle factors of addicts with Crohn’s disease often aggravate this horrible condition. Quite often, addicts make poor dietary choices that can worsen intestinal irritability. They also have decreased immune systems that negatively impact a person’s ability to respond appropriately to Crohn’s irritations.

Smoking and dealing with stress can worsen symptoms of Crohn’s disease, having a compounding effect on a person’s mind and body.

Get Substance Abuse Help Now

If you or someone you know is battling a drug addiction on top of Crohn’s disease, it is crucial to get adequate substance abuse help as soon as possible. At the Crosby Clinic, we have an exceptional dual diagnosis program at our rehabilitation facilities that help individuals combat co-occurring conditions in a healthier and more-reliable manner. Contact us at (760) 751-1234 to get started now.

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