Academia and Addiction

Professors and grad students are usually seen as sources of wisdom, sages who push students to go further, dive deeper, and pursue knowledge. But professors and those in academia suffer from job-related pressure, stress, and chaos, sometimes leading to drug use, addiction, and addiction treatment programs.

The unique pressures of academia can encourage and even mask a person’s addiction. Professors and grad students are often required to present their research or attend networking events. In both cases, downing a drink or a pill beforehand can help people soothe their anxiety and get through the event. The stress of academic life in general can be a concern as well. Professors must think about teaching, researching, students; they worry about whether they’re a good teacher, whether their CV is robust enough, whether they’ll ever make tenure. The amount of work that people in academia must do is also unbearable at times; a professor may reward herself with a few glasses of wine while pushing through a paper, or a grad student might take a stimulant to fuel a researching session. On top of all this, the structure of academia can even help those with addiction to hide their problems. Professors can disappear during breaks or sabbaticals, avoiding colleagues and students and bingeing in secrecy.

The drinking-positive culture of academia can also reinforce unhealthy addictive behaviors. Academic conferences and events often have bars where professionals drink together, and many grad students socialize by going out to bars together. This kind of drinking may even be a way of coping with the stress and and unsupportive work environment of academia, but choosing to refrain from such events can brand people as outsiders, harming them both socially and career-wise.

The intense workload and time commitments of those in academia—preparing lectures, teaching, researching, writing, studying, presenting—can conflict with other important aspects of life, including family, friends, relationships, and time for self-care and health, pushing those in academia into an unhealthy place where they use drugs to cope with the burden of it all. An academic schedule can also compete with recovery efforts, keeping someone from attending AA meetings or checking in with their sponsor. Those in academia are also at a risk of avoiding treatment in an addiction recovery center, often because they’re scared of losing momentum on a career they’ve worked years or even decades to build. However, drug rehab is the best move a professor or grad student can make in ensuring that they continue writing, reading, and researching with continued vigor and acuity.

If you or a loved one is struggling with addiction, please email or call our understanding representatives to learn more about our luxury drug rehab facility, where our clients recover in tranquility and privacy. The treatment program involves individual and group sessions, where clients discover the roots of their addiction, develop healthy coping mechanisms for dealing with stress and cravings, and integrate into a supportive community of sober mentors and peers. Please contact Right Path Drug Rehab today to start the journey toward lifelong, sustained sobriety and wellness.

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