This story probably sounds familiar: An addict has been sober for a few months or a year. Then, out of nowhere, they suddenly come home drunk or high. They claim that something “triggered” them, that the smell or sight of something set them off. This is called a craving, and it is a core part of what addiction is. Given that they can be triggered so suddenly, their case seems pretty hopeless. If only there was a cure for drug addiction that would relieve them of these cravings…
A Cure for Drug Addiction?
As it turns out, a doctor named Stanley Glick claims he may have developed a cure for drug addiction. It’s a chemical called 18-methoxycoronaridine (or 18-MC, for short). He’s tested it on lab rats who are addicted to cocaine, and it seems to be able to relieve them of their desire for the drug. It is also reported to have a similar effect on alcohol, meth, nicotine, and opiate addictions.
Too Good to Be True?
This isn’t the first time we have heard about a “cure for drug addiction”. It seems like every few years, another one comes along. Different therapies, rehabs, and drugs have all claimed to offer a cure. Yet, drug addiction still exists. Obviously, no cure has been perfect so far. So, we all have reason to be skeptical about this latest “cure”.
There are a few practical problems with Glick’s 18-MC “cure for drug addiction”:
- It may cause drastic side effects, such as nausea and hallucination (although initial trials on people have been relatively safe)
- Companies are hesitant about investing in research and development, which is expensive
- Even if 18-MC turns out to be what it claims to be, it will take years to be approved by the Food & Drug Administration (FDA)
The Spiritual Cure for Drug Addiction
Nevertheless, there’s no reason to be totally negative about this new drug. Millions of people suffer from drug addiction, but only a tiny fraction of them ever find a drug rehab. Even then, they often relapse and fail to stay sober. Obviously, it would be great if all these addicts were spared that fate. So, we should all hope for the best.
At the same time, it is worth mentioning that recovery doesn’t always require a drug like 18-MC. Countless people have come to find a drug rehab, receive treatment, and stay sober. They never have to deal with the drug cravings that 18-MC aims to address.
Why is this? They have recovered spiritually, as well as mentally and physically. 12 step programs approach addiction from a spiritual angle, helping the addict to change their self-defeating attitudes, beliefs and behaviors. In doing this, they recover mentally and the obsession that leads to intense cravings is gone. All they need to do in order to stay sober is to continue living spiritually.
In the end, it would be wise not to hold our breath. We should all hope for a cure for drug addiction, but also keep in mind that 12 steps have worked for almost a century.