When someone becomes an addict, their normal behavior changes erratically. This is because drug addiction is a chronic disease that is characterized by uncontrollable use of harmful substances that changes the chemicals in the brain. It is because of these changes that a person can begin to exhibit negative behaviors and get themselves into risky situations that they wouldn’t have gotten into before their addiction set in. Addiction is a disease and must be stopped before it takes not only one’s health, but their life as well. In this article, we will show you the different options for addiction treatment so you know what to do in case you or someone you know is struggling with substance abuse issues.
Can Addiction Be Treated?
Addiction can be treated, and hundreds of thousands have been successful in getting — and staying — sober. But it is not as simple as taking a magic pill and everything goes away overnight. Since addiction is a chronic disease, the user cannot simply stop using drugs and expect to be cured. In fact, many patients need long-term care in order for them to stop using completely. During their treatment, the user must be able to stop using drugs, stay drug-free, and become a productive member of their family, their workplace, as well as society.
5 Types of Addiction Treatment
There are plenty of options for addiction treatment. Treatment programs may also vary depending on the individual’s needs and severity of the addiction. The most effective kind of treatment is one that ensures the involvement of patients with every step of the way.
- Inpatient Rehabilitation Inpatient treatment is a type of addiction treatment where structured programs are offered and are designed to address all areas of the individual’s addiction. During this program, patients stay and live at the facility, allowing them to receive round-the-clock medical care and therapy. This is the best option for people who are battling with long-term addiction and co-occurring mental disorders as well.
- Outpatient Rehabilitation Outpatient programs typically consist of the same activities and curriculum as inpatient programs, the only difference is that outpatient rehabilitation programs allow patients to live at home while working through recovery. This is a big benefit for patients because they can continue to work and care for their families, even while they are in this program. Each treatment session is planned out through the week and patients must comply with the guidelines and achieve important milestones to complete their treatment program. The only downside of this kind of treatment is that patients are at risk for encountering triggers if they are not careful. This is why this type of treatment is best for patients with mild addiction and are mindful enough to commit to the program. This way they can recover quickly.
- Sober Living Homes Sober Living homes operate as a combination of a full-time residence and inpatient treatment center. Sober Living homes are usually inhabited by those who have gone through a structured treatment program, but may still need more time to get settled into new healthy habits before they enter back into their old lives. This is done so that patients can recover quickly and return to normal life. This is a good option for individuals who need time to apply what they have learned during their rehabilitation, and at the same time maintain their new healthy habits while they live in a safe, productive environment.
- Detoxification This treatment is typically integrated into a longer-term recovery program. This phase allows drug addicts to safely detox from the drugs and alcohol in their system. Detox requires the assistance of health care professionals so they can manage withdrawal symptoms, which can be fairly uncomfortable and even dangerous for the recovering addict. This is done by tapering down prescribed medications to help patients slowly wean themselves off of the substance until they are no longer physically dependent on it. These medications are not addictive, but help in abating or managing withdrawal symptoms, reduce any cravings and treat other co-occurring disorders that the addiction came with.
- Faith-based Treatment Some people may prefer a spiritual approach towards their recovery. There are faith-based rehabilitation centers that specialize in addiction treatment that are centered around one’s religious beliefs. This type of program allows patients to be surrounded by people with the same beliefs and help those who are looking for guidance and strength from a higher power to keep them on a straight path towards their journey to recovery.
Besides the types of treatment, there are also various methods of therapy that may be employed to help the recovering addict work through their trauma. The decision on what method to use is based on an assessment of the mental illness and substance abuse patterns of the addict, and may include a number of group or individual therapy sessions that are organized by counselors.
- Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT) CBT is a therapy used to help patients in recovery acknowledge problems with their thought process or feelings that could compromise their sobriety. This form of therapy is also used in treating co-occurring conditions like bipolar disorder.
- Dialectical Behavior Therapy (DBT) DBT is a type of therapy which is used in treating mental disorders like Obsessive Compulsive Disorder, and can also used to treat substance use disorder. DBT is designed to help improve the patient’s self-esteem and at the same time provide them with the skills they need to manage stress. This therapy also encourages addicts to identify and remove the triggers in their life which can lead to their relapse.
- Experiential Therapy Experiential therapy makes use of non-traditional methods of addressing addiction and mental health issues. Things like equine therapy, adventure and outdoor therapy, yoga, meditation, etc are all kinds of experiential therapies.
- Biofeedback Therapy Biofeedback Therapy works by helping people understand their body’s involuntary processes. It is also during this session that the therapist places electronic sensors on the patient’s temples to help monitor their brain activity. They will then review the brain wave patterns to help inform the treatment plan with the best techniques to help the patient overcome their addictions.
- Psychodynamic Therapy Psychodynamic Therapy helps addicts by exploring their emotions. This helps them uncover their subconscious thoughts that contributed to their addiction, and at the same time identify the cause of their substance abuse. Individuals will work with therapists to help acknowledge these feelings so they can better prepare themselves for when they encounter triggers throughout their daily lives.
- Holistic Therapy Holistic therapy focuses on the individual as a whole, not just narrowing in on their addiction or mental health issue. Holistic therapy isn’t just one type of therapy, but rather a combination of multiple methods, tailor-made for each patient. A patient’s holistic treatment plan could include yoga, art therapy, acupuncture, guided meditation, or really anything that is of benefit to their health and wellbeing.
- Motivational Enhancement Therapy (MET) MET is used to help addicts recover by learning how to change their negative thoughts and behaviors that their addiction manifested in them. This is usually done to help people with co-occurring conditions like PTSD and bipolar disorder.
Once the treatment program is done, patients are recommended or even required to attend or join a support group. These support groups are an important part of their continued care after they have completed the main phases of rehab. There are a number of support groups designed to meet the specific needs of a recovering patient. Finding the right one can be a big help to those who need motivation and inspiration to stay sober for life.
- 12-Step Programs was designed by the founders of Alcoholics Anonymous. Patients follow the 12-Step model of recovery and 12 traditions. This program allows them to adapt these steps according to their needs, and many have found this to be greatly helpful during their journey to recovery.
- Narcotics Anonymous is a support group that is modeled after Alcoholics Anonymous. These meetings provide the community with support for those who are recovering from drug addiction. Members help motivate each other to continue on a path of recovery and stay committed to lifetime sobriety. These kinds of groups can make addiction feel less lonely, as a big part of these meetings is members sharing their personal stories and experiences of addiction and recovery with the group.
- Alcoholics Anonymous is popularly known as AA, and is a support group that helps alcoholics recover through peer interaction. AA meetings can be found all across the country, and it’s likely that you have a local chapter as well. Members are open to talking about their experiences and sharing how they are doing in their journey to recovery. Closed meetings are open only to recovering alcoholics seeking help, while open meetings are held as well, and family members and loved ones are invited to join.
These are some of the many treatment options recovering addicts can choose from. Finding the right one for you will ensure a smooth and successful journey to sobriety, and allow you to connect with people who share a common bond in addiction recovery.
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