Some consider a vice to be anything that is bad for you and potentially addictive, where others narrow it down to the top four; smoking, drinking, gambling and drugs, which are the vices we are going to focus on in this blog. Apart from drugs, there is the idea that in moderation these vices are fine, and they are, but when those vices start to become and addiction (as the word ‘vice’ suggests they are) it becomes something that you are much better off without. The debilitating impact that any addiction has to you both physically and mentally isn’t something that anyone wants, and it’s something that hurts more people than just yourself. People always have different reasons for turning to one of these things, and becoming addicted is a much easier road than rehabilitating yourself and giving them up, but the benefits are always going to be worth it.
The mental side of things will be different for each person, as we all have different stories to tell, and so the mental during of recovery is hard to give advice on without a license to practice psychology. However, what we can do is give advice and understanding of the benefits of giving up your vices to help you become a better you.
Smoking is the most socially accepted addiction – pretty much everywhere outside of the UK lets you smoke anywhere at your leisure, but as time goes on, more and more establishments are practising their rights to have non-smoking zones. The amount of people who have given up smoking since the ban in the UK has been more rapid than any other time in history, and quicker still since the boom of the e-cigarette. Smoking causes lung, throat and mouth cancer, it causes tar build up in the lungs, forces your heart to work harder creating high blood pressure, causes teeth to rot, hair to thin and skin to yellow and age prematurely. If you start smoking young it can also stunt your growth – it is literally death in a stick. Luckily the effects of smoking – bar cancer – can be reversed over time by giving it up. You can clear your lungs and return your physical health back to a good condition.
For those without an alcohol addiction, having a drink now and again is no big deal, but for those who suffer from one, it’s a horrid cycle – without the drink you have to face the world, and the hideous hangover waiting for you, it can also take time for your body to resume its normal functions, like stomaching proper food seeing as alcohol mutes your appetite. But giving it up will return your cognitive functions and make you fit for the world. You can’t do anything while out of your mind drunk – plus drink free means no risk of alcohol poisoning, or dying in your sleep due to an alcohol-induced heart attack.
Drugs are illegal for a reason – getting hooked is so easy and so hard to let go of. Often, people with a drug addiction fall back to using because of the people they are with, and so it can mean a full life adjustment to rehabilitate themselves. However, if the choice is between living or dying – which is the better option? There are medications – which you can read more here about – that can seriously help to beat the addiction, and rehab centres to go to, that makes the dramatised withdrawals from Hollywood films look stupid – it’s no way an easy process, but it can be done with help.
You need a home and your possessions, and those are the thing you’re going to lose if a gambling addiction continues. And not only that, but you can end up borrowing money from the wrong people just to feed you addiction, digging yourself deeper into that hole. Gambling is addictive because of the thrill of winning, so how great would it be to funnel that competitive spirit into a competitive sport instead? Something that is healthier for you physically and mentally.