The Difference Between ‘”Cured” and “Recovered” in Addiction

In August 15, 2022
a person watches a sunrise wondering if you can be cured from addiction

Breaking the cycle of addiction can be difficult. But, after hard work and dedication to a treatment program, many people consider themselves cured from addiction. Is there really a cure for addiction, though? Another popular term for someone who successfully maintains their sobriety is “recovered,” which implies that they are still diligently working on their progress. The difference between cured and recovered from addiction may be more subtle than many think.

Seasons in Malibu knows how important it is to receive high-quality treatment when working toward sobriety. Our center in beautiful Southern California lets you learn how to manage your addiction in a luxury environment. Don’t put off a healthier, happier future any longer. Contact our team online or call today to get started in one of our addiction treatment programs.

Cured from Addiction vs. Recovered from Addiction

When speaking informally, people often use the words “cure” and “recovery” interchangeably. But, when responding to the nature of addiction, the two terms mean very different things, and the distinction between them is a fundamental concept in understanding how to approach sobriety.

A cure is defined as stopping a disease or illness entirely. On the other hand, recovery is the softer act of regaining or returning to a normal or healthy state. In other words, to be cured of a disease would be to return to a condition in which it no longer affects you. Recovery is where you learn to cope with the condition and no longer let it intrude on leading a healthy life.

One clear example of this distinction is diabetes. Diabetes has no cure. If there was a cure, then the person with diabetes could simply take that, make the disease disappear, and keep eating whatever they want without consequence. However, through careful treatments and changes in behavior, diabetes can be successfully managed to avoid sickness or risk of death.

Addiction can be understood the same way. The disease emerges from a combination of biological dependence and dysfunctional behavioral patterns. But, by managing behaviors, careful treatments, and abstaining from substances, someone can recover from addiction.

The Benefits of Addiction Treatment for Recovery

Treating addiction should be approached from a medical standpoint, as it is a disease. But, the behavioral aspects of addiction must also be addressed for treatment to be successful. This is because addiction changes the way people think and act. A quality residential treatment program will offer a variety of services to help address both the medical and behavioral needs of those in addiction recovery, such as:

  • Medical detoxification to safely rid the body of toxins
  • Various therapy options to help get to the root of addictive behaviors
  • A focus on whole-person wellness to help build a foundation for long-term recovery

If you or a loved one is ready to take the first step toward recovery from addiction, Seasons in Malibu can help. Our immersive treatment program offers a luxury setting and high-end amenities to make your stay comfortable and relaxing. Plus, we offer a wide range of services to help you overcome your addiction and build a foundation for long-term sobriety. Contact our team today to get started on your journey to recovery.

When Are People Recovered from Addiction?

Addiction treatment is a never-ending process. Instead, it is a new commitment to live a happy life one day at a time. Even a small amount of a substance might result in a return to active addiction and all the pain it causes.

Hearing that addiction cannot be fully cured and will continue to be a lifelong struggle may initially seem a little discouraging. Still, it is also a cause for hope in the process and a reason to be realistic and graceful towards yourself. Relapsing is indeed an ever-present possibility, but this does not mean that a miraculous “cure” has failed.

Among people actively pursuing addiction treatment for one year, upwards of 70% of alcoholics and 60% of drug users can achieve lifelong sobriety. This means that any “failure” does not make you hopeless but should be viewed as an initiation to forgive yourself.

Addiction Treatment Programs at Seasons in Malibu

Seasons in Malibu is a world-renowned, evidence-based addiction treatment program that has helped countless individuals find sobriety and hope. Our luxurious oceanfront setting provides the perfect environment for healing and transformation. Our highly trained and experienced staff utilize a variety of modalities to address the underlying causes of addiction and help our clients develop the tools they need to achieve and maintain sobriety. If you or a loved one is struggling with addiction, we encourage you to reach out to us online or by calling .


By Dr. Reuben Vaisman-Tzachor

Seasons Malibu