Breaking Bad Habits: How Vietnam War Veterans Broke Their Heroin Addictions.


Now that you have undergone rehab from either substance abuse or alcohol, probably the next hardest thing will be to not relapse!  How can you not relapse?  Change your environment!  Your environment is a key factor in your recovery.  In treatment, you may have often talk about triggers and how you may choose to spend your time once you were back into the “real world.”  This piece is about a great article about some people we consider heroes and how they battled their enemy of addiction written by James Clear.

While visiting the troops in Vietnam, the two Congressmen discovered that over 15 percent of US soldiers had developed an addiction to heroin.

Later research, which tested every American soldier in Vietnam for heroin addiction, would reveal that 40 percent of servicemen had tried heroin and nearly 20 percent were addicted.

Lee Robins, one of the researchers in charge of tracking the veterans, found that when the soldiers returned to the United States, only 5 percent of them became re-addicted to heroin. In other words, 95 percent eliminated their addiction nearly overnight.

How Addictions Get Shaped

The end result was that soldiers were surrounded by an environment that had multiple stimuli driving them toward heroin use. It’s not hard to imagine how living in a war zone with other heroin users could drive you to try it yourself.

Once each soldier returned to the United States, however, they found themselves in a completely different environment. Not only that, they found themselves in an environment devoid of the stimuli that triggered their heroin use in the first place.

Without the stress, the fellow heroin users, and the environmental factors to trigger their addiction, many soldiers found it easier to quit.

To Change Your Behavior, Change Your Environment

The people we connect with and the places we live in often determine our behavior and habits as much as we do ourselves.

The good news is that, at least to a certain degree, your environment is within your control. If you want to change your behavior, then change your environment. Even small adjustments can make a difference.

Read more here.

If you like to change your environment now from substance abuse or alcohol, please contact Bridgeway Behavioral Health by visiting our website:

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