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Drug Addiction Treatment Basics

Drug addiction is a very complex disease caused by a person’s dependence on drugs. The person initially takes the drug voluntarily but after repeated use over a period of time, it becomes more an involuntary thing. The intake becomes compulsive and uncontrollable mainly because of the effect the drugs have on the brain. By interfering with the chemicals inside, drugs trick the person to keep taking them in order to feel normal. For example, initially, drugs cause you to feel happy and energetic but eventually they disorient you and give rise to many side effects. In addition to those, if the addict does not take drugs then he will be unable to function properly.

Breaking the addiction isn’t simply stopping the intake of drugs. There are many withdrawal symptoms that cause abusers to relapse to end the pain. These symptoms include, but are not limited to, nausea, depression, panic, shaking of body, difficulty breathing, tightness in chest, diarrhea and in severe cases, heart attacks, strokes and even death. So as these symptoms start showing effect, the person has no choice but to take the drug again, and not only must he continue taking them but he also needs to take it in larger amounts and more frequently as he develops a tolerance for it.

It may seem like an unsolvable problem but it isn’t. There are many rehab centers to help with the process. They start with detoxifying the abuser’s body to rid it of the drug present in it. Medication is given to help ease the pain of the withdrawal, in some cases it is also given to prevent relapse. Such facilities advise patients to take residence so that they are in the presence of doctors and therapists 24/7. It also helps because it is impossible to access drugs and one is able to avoid all temptations. Away from the stress and worries of life, patients are able to focus on their recovery.

The key is to stay for at least three months as the process isn’t purely a physical one but also a psychological one. Therapists are present for that as well as to help with any other mental disorders the person might be having. Disorders like depression and anxiety are often the cause for drug use, so treating them help to prevent the person from relapsing.

There are two types of main therapies that are used: Cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) and motivational enhancement therapy (MET). CBT is mainly about controlling negative thought patterns and preventing destructive behavior, as well as identifying triggers and coming up with better ways to deal with them than turning to drugs. MET is where a therapist helps the patient come up with the motivation necessary to deal with the treatment and stop relying on drugs. In addition to these, there are traditional 12 step programs and nontraditional rehab programs which constitute the main part of the treatment.

Drug addiction is a threat not only to the individual but also to the society as it increases crime rates, domestic violence and a decrease in productivity. But the best way to deal with it is getting treatment early on.


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Non 12 Step Rehab Program

Drug abuse is a huge problem in the United States of America which is why people have been looking for many ways to overcome it. So when it comes to the solution to drug addiction, there are two choices: the traditional 12 step program or the non-traditional program. The 12 step program may be more popular but that doesn’t mean that it is more effective. The main difference between the two programs is their approach to drug abuse and their solution.

12 step programs label the drug dependence as the main problem and suggest that you leave it all to a Higher Power, thus accepting that it is not in your hands to get better but His. The non-traditional way believe that there is an underlying problem to the drug abuse that needs to be addressed and the way to do that is by empowering the patient. Motivating the addict to make their own choices, believe that they can do it and overcome it.

The traditional program is a rigid 12 step plan which is expected to work on every patient. If it fails to help a patient improve, he is blamed instead of the system. This further discourages and demotivates the patient. Someone who has come to face and overcome such a big obstacle in their life is told that they aren’t trying hard enough. Furthermore, patients are told that addiction never goes away, that their best hope is to suppress and control it; and the way to do that attends meetings regularly. This doesn’t give anyone a lot of hope, does it? It only ends up discouraging people who are trying to go through one of the most difficult things in life and pushes them away from rehab and the hope that it will make them better.

The biggest advantage to the non-traditional program is that it is tailored according to the patient’s needs. The plans are flexible and paced in a way that the patient can follow. If there aren’t any improvements then different approaches are taken till one works. There isn’t one program that everyone needs to participate in as that completely ignores the strengths and weaknesses of each patient, hence making rehab ineffective. Drug abuse is considered a serious problem by the nontraditional program, but one that has a solution, a long-term recovery, and therapy.

Alternative drug rehab centers in the USA have much higher success rates than those that use the 12 step program. Most of these centers are residential and keep patients for around three months. They help detoxify patients and provide them with therapy and all the facilities to help them overcome their addiction. Latest technologies are used as well as the latest research. It doesn’t look to only cure the physical effects of drug abuse but also the mental and emotional effects, which is why psychiatric treatment is also necessary for this program. So while the traditional program was around much longer and seems to be the safe way, it is recommended that you try the non-traditional way as it is much more effective and fixes the underlying cause of addiction.


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Benefits of Inpatient Drug Rehab

From prescription drugs to heroin, marijuana or cocaine, drug abuse and addiction is a damaging and often life-threatening illness that requires urgent attention. Relationships, careers, physical health, and even your survival are at risk, and getting the best chance at a permanent recovery is an important step.

Although outpatient treatments can succeed, inpatient treatment has a higher success rate and may be an absolute necessity depending on the substance you have been using and the severity of your addiction. Rather than asking yourself if you can afford to take several months away from your usual routine to undergo drug rehabilitation, you need to ask yourself if you can afford not to do so.

Do I need inpatient drug rehab?

Once you have recognized that you have a drug problem, you should see your doctor for advice right away. Remember, addiction is a disease, so medical advice is needed. If you don’t feel comfortable consulting your usual doctor about your problem, call a treatment center for a referral.

A doctor will discuss your options with you, and if he or she recommends inpatient treatment, it would be foolish or even dangerous to attempt any other form of rehabilitation. Recovery from addiction is a lengthy process and involves more than detoxing. Many addicts detox in hospital, only to return to their addiction. This can have fatal consequences.

Is inpatient treatment expensive?

The cost of your treatment depends on a lot of variables including the problem you are striving to overcome, the severity of your addiction, and the facility you choose. Medical insurance often covers all or part of inpatient rehabilitation, and many centers also offer payment plans that accommodate your needs.

Cost should not be your primary concern when choosing a rehabilitation and recovery center. Choose a facility with a treatment approach that you are comfortable with. For example, you may or may not prefer a faith-based program. Remember that your rehabilitation is an investment in a better life, and choose accordingly.

What are the benefits of inpatient programs?

First and foremost, withdrawal is an uncomfortable process that can even be dangerous if attempted without medical supervision. Qualified medical personnel can help you through this difficult part of your recovery, making it safer and more comfortable than it otherwise would have been.

Your living environment may have contributed to your addiction, and if it didn’t, it may trigger cravings as you are reminded of the circumstances in which you pursued your habit. Being in a safe and unfamiliar environment removes you from the stresses, reminders and temptations that could trigger a relapse before you have recovered enough to handle these triggers.

Your rehabilitation center will offer you both professional and peer support to help you to deal with the psychological reasons why you succumbed to addiction. You will have trained counsellors to give you individualized therapy, and you will have an opportunity to interact with other people who are going through the same process as you are.

Time well spent

Although you may initially feel dismayed by the time you will need to launch your recovery process, your choice of inpatient drug rehabilitation is the best decision you will ever make. It’s well worth spending a few months in rehabilitation in order to enjoy a longer, more fruitful, happier and more rewarding life. Inpatient drug rehabilitation will help you to fulfil your real potential, improve your financial and emotional life and put you on the road to becoming the person you always wanted to be.


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Marijuana addiction treatment

Marijuana differs from other drugs. It sits on the fence politically, legally, socially and even in terms of addictions, with camps of ardent supporters on either side of the issue. Debates continue on whether it is a gateway drug to other drugs, whether it should be legalized, and even whether people can become addicted to it.

The debates don’t really matter. When marijuana starts to adversely affect your health, relationships, work ethic and every day functioning, it’s time to take action. You would not be alone – statistics show over 4 percent of Americans have been dependent on marijuana at some point in their lives. Nine percent of those who try it, end up dependent on it, and dependence is twice as prevalent as on other substances like cocaine and heroin.

Choosing the right path

Marijuana is considered the most common secondary drug used by people dependent on other drugs. If you are one of those using some other drug as well, it is important that you make this known as it would affect your rehabilitation choice.

The first step is to come clean about your drug use with someone you trust, you feel comfortable with, and who will be able to give you the most useful information and guidance. This could be your doctor or a counsellor.

Physically, the cannabis withdrawal syndrome is relatively mild. It includes sleep and appetite problems as well as irritability, anxiety and craving.

It may, therefore, seem the cheapest, easiest-to-hide and most convenient way do it privately on your own. However, you didn’t get into this state of dependency on a highly social and recreational substance on your own. So it’s better not to try getting out of it alone – a strong support system could make all the difference between staying sober and relapsing.

Assisted rehabilitation options:

  • Outpatient services: You will receive the same treatment as at a residential centre, but will live at home. If your home or the people around you there contributed to your becoming dependent on marijuana, living at home might negate some of the treatment’s benefits. Any “triggers” for your dependence should be avoided for some time.
  • Inpatient residential programs usually require that you stay at the centre throughout the treatment period. While some will allow you to go to work during the day, this is closely monitored. The aim is to allow you to take a complete break from your old life and concentrate solely on breaking your habit.

Total confidentiality is maintained at private marijuana rehabs in order to protect those who are concerned that their employers or family might get to know they have entered rehab.

Types of therapies used for recovery

Therapies used are behavioral therapies aimed at enhancing self-control and reducing drug use, while at the same time addressing the problems that go along with that drug abuse. This accomplished by

  • Identifying and changing behavior patterns (Cognitive-behavioral therapy).
  • Encouraging internally-motivated change (Motivation Enhancement Therapy).
  • Identifying target behaviors and imposing a give-or-withhold reward system for behaviors that are (or aren’t) met (Contingency Management).
  • Involving family and friends in counselling where possible (Network therapy)

Easing back out:

Sober living communities (Halfway Houses): These are places where you can bridge the gap between your rehabilitation centre and a return to ordinary life after completing your treatment. This provides you with a transition period between the seclusion of the centre and the challenges of the world you’ve been separated from for some time.

They can also provide an alternative way to kick the habit, when linked with outpatient treatment.

Support groups of other recovering addicts know where you were, what you are going through and where you’re hoping to go. They can provide invaluable assistance in your path to recovery.


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The pros and cons of sober living when recovering from substance abuse

Are you or your loved one grappling with substance abuse or working hard to overcome some form of addiction?  Is maintaining your sobriety proving particularly challenging along the road to recovery?  Do you need outside assistance to ensure you lay off alcohol or drugs?  Perhaps you have been through a rehabilitation program but are not quite ready to reintegrate into society without ongoing support.

 

I probably don’t need to tell you that kicking an addiction can be extremely difficult.  It can be incredibly challenging to stay sober when temptation is placed back in front of you in the outside world.

 

There are a range of treatments available to assist with sustained sobriety. In order to help you or your dependent stay on the straight and narrow a sober living home may be an appropriate solution to help ease your way back into society.

 

What is sober living?

First, in case you are not familiar with the term, let’s clarify what I mean by ‘sober living’.  Sober living refers to living in group homes designed for those recovering from addiction.  It is seen by many as a supportive transition from an addictive lifestyle, providing a live-in environment with a level of supervision and structure.

 

Sober living environments are distinctly different from rehabilitation centers which typically administer more intensive recovery and less freedom.  Sober living homes are often privately owned establishments that require tenants to pay rent, purchase their own food and adhere to certain rules (the most important of which is to stay sober).  In return the sober living facility provides a supportive environment to assist with recovery.

 

This sounds like a sensible half-way step for recovering addicts.  However let’s look at a few of the pros and cons of sober living in more detail.

 

A safe and supportive environment

Sober living places individuals in an interim environment and surrounds them with like-minded people.  All of the tenants understand the perils of addiction and are focused on achieving their goal of staying clean for the long term.  This environment can provide a safety blanket and support network as users go through their rehabilitation process.

 

You don’t need to go to a rehab center first

While a vast majority of attendees have been through a more intensive rehabilitation program prior to enrolling at a sober living home, this is not mandatory.  Sometimes simply the support of one’s peers at a sober living facility can be sufficient to navigate a recovering addict through to long term success.  So long as a person has the ability to stay sober, then it could be the right choice for them.

 

Provides individuals with personal responsibility

Provided you follow certain house rules, pitch in with household chores and complete mandatory drug tests, then sober living provides individuals with flexibility to come and go in the same way they would in ‘regular’ daily life. It is a good stepping stone to returning to non-supervised care, and gives attendees a sense of personal responsibility.  However, violate common rules and you could end up with a fine or be tasked with making amends with residents in another form.

 

 

Ok, so sober living sounds like it could be a worthwhile option as you look to overcome a difficult time in your life.  But let’s also consider a few of the drawbacks.

 

Different levels of structure

The amount of structure provided at a sober living house can differ significantly between facilities.  As most of these are private establishments and there are no standards that must be adhered to, facilities can be managed as the owner sees fit.  Facilities with a higher level of structure tend to exhibit better results in terms of achieving long term sobriety; so, if you have a choice, it is important to consider the processes and directives of individual homes.

 

The environment won’t suit everyone

It goes without saying that a sober living environment will not be optimal for everyone.  For some the intensive nature of a rehabilitation or detox center is the key to kicking addiction.  For others release into an environment surrounded by loved ones might be the best way to stay sober.  The ability to come and go (within some boundaries) might even provide a path to relapse for certain individuals.  The key is to select an environment that will best suit the concerned individual to maximize their rehabilitation success.


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Sober Living Homes: A Good Solution

If you or a loved one have a substance abuse addiction, you are not alone. According to the National Council of Alcoholism over 17 million people face alcohol addiction. Another estimated 200 million, share an addiction to drugs. The statistics of the amount of substance abuse are overwhelming. You should take comfort in knowing there are many treatment programs available. Each method will take emotional strength and dedication to recovery. If you are not comfortable with the idea of staying in a rehab facility, a sober living home may be the answer.

 

Although there are similarities, a sober living home is not like a rehabilitation facility. A rehab facility offers a more intensive program, where there are usually doctors and psychiatrists available to you 24 hours a day. You should also keep in mind, that there are more rules, regulations, and limitations, in a rehab facility. A sober living home allows the patient more freedom. Mostly, you may come and go as you wish. However, there are basic rules, like curfew and random drug tests, that should be expected.

 

Realizing that your own sobriety will be a lifelong journey, is the first step. Finding the right support system, is the second. The goal of a sober living home is independence. You will pay rent, buy groceries, and go to work or school, as you would if you were living on your own. It will be a sober environment where you will have the emotional support to live a clean life. If you don’t follow the rules, or fail a drug test, you may be asked to leave.

 

An equally important aspect of success, is your social network. A study performed by Zywiak, Longabaugh and Wirtz in 2002, found that clients who had social networks with a higher number of abstainers and recovering alcoholics, had a better outcome 3 years after treatment completion. Many people find themselves abusing substances when they are in a specific social circle. Removing yourself from those individuals and places while remaining independent, can aid in a successful transition–and ultimately sobriety.

 

The majority of individuals who live in a sober living home have already gone through a rehab program. Many facilities will only accept patients who have previously detoxed, or have attended a rehab facility. Many individuals meet the requirement by attending an outpatient treatment center while living in a sober living home. The usual length of stay, can range between 3 to 12 months, depending on your recovery.

Facts About Sober Living Homes

  • Prices can range between $300 to $2000 a month depending on where you live. A good rule of thumb, is the rent will usually equal the cost of living in your city.
  • Health insurance can cover some costs. Your insurance provider can give you a list of facilities in your network.
  • You can continue to go to work or school while living in a sober living home.
  • Usually, you may come and go as you please.
  • There will be random drug tests performed.
  • A high emphasis is placed on community participation.
  • You are usually given chores that must be completed.
  • The home may require you to attend group meetings, outpatient services or a 12 step program.

 

Unlike rehab facilities or halfway houses, a sober living home will allow you to stay longer. It is usually recommended a person stay a minimum of 90 days. Abstinence is your goal. Therefore, having the option to stay as long as needed, can aid in your sobriety.

 

In Conclusion

A sober living home is structured to avoid the limitations of rehabilitation facilities. This will allow you independence and emotional support while transitioning to normal living. A sober living home promotes a community environment. Studies show that strong social support will aid in recovery. Knowing your options is important when seeking help. Ultimately, you and your loved ones will decide what makes the most sense for you.


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Drug addiction treatment

Drug addiction is an unfortunate condition affecting millions of people across the globe. It is recognized by medical professionals as a serious, but treatable medical ailment.

 

Different drugs tend to affect individuals differently. That said, addiction remains characterized by uncontrollable or compulsive behavior to the detriment of the individual’s health.

 

Because each case is unique, no single approach can be taken towards the treatment of drug addiction. Rather, a holistic and comprehensive approach needs to be implemented based on individual requirements.

 

Treatment Approaches

 

The treatment of substance abuse is generally determined by the drug/s involved. Treatment may include behavioral therapy, the use of other medications, counseling and/or a combination of these. A doctor, drug counselor or health professional will be able to provide the correct advice as to which treatment program should be undertaken for the best results.

 

Although medications to treat opiate, alcohol and nicotine addictions have been developed, no such medications exist to treat marijuana, depressant or stimulant addiction. In such cases. It appears as though behavioral therapy is the most successful in treating these types of drug addictions.

 

Detox and cold turkey

 

Detoxification is usually the first step in any rehab program. This is the process whereby the body is able to rid itself of accumulated toxins. Certain drugs may require a ‘weaning off’ period and/or a gradual reduction of the drug intake. A key feature of any detox program is that it should be followed by behavioral therapy and/or a supervised regimen of medications.

 

Beating withdrawal symptoms

 

For many people addicted to drugs, the symptoms associated with withdrawal can be unbearable. The severity and duration of these symptoms vary from one substance to another. Patients may suffer from any number of conditions; including cravings, sleeplessness, pain, nausea, seizures, headaches, depression and increased irritability. It should be noted that people who wish to recover from severe addictions should consult with a registered medical professional before attempting to do so.

 

Treating drug addiction with meds

 

The nature of the addiction will determine which medications are appropriate and at which stage. Medications combating cravings, relapse, mood swings, sleeplessness, irritability etc. may be prescribed. Such medications may also help the recovering addict to focus on treatment related counseling. Medications tend to be more effective when used in conjunction with behavioral therapy.

 

Behavioural Therapies

 

Stress is frequently to blame for recovering addicts who relapse. Behavioural therapy teaches the individual how to cope with cravings and/or triggers which could potentially cause relapse. Triggers include seeing former associates and friends or being unable to cope with certain situations.

 

Behavioural therapy can be divided into four categories. These are:

  1. Group Therapy. This type of therapy aids the recovery process and teaches the addict how to deal with personal and unresolved issues.
  2. Cognitive therapy. This teaches the addict how to recognize and avoid situations in which they may find themselves pressured or wanting to take drugs.
  3. Motivational encouragement – recovering addicts respond well to a system of incentives and rewards. For example, failure to attend counselling could mean losing privileges while staying clean could be rewarded appropriately.
  4. One on one with a counsellor to discuss personal issues and play an active role in the recovery process.

 

The length of the recovery process is usually ongoing, but it also depends on the individual. When it comes to drug addiction, people may relapse or swap one drug for another. Both prescription medications and illegal drugs can be addictive.

 

Relapse

 

Relapsing does not necessarily indicate the failure of the recovery program. For many drug addictions, a relapse is even expected. With a possible treatment adjustment, the individual can begin the recovery process once again. The longer a patient stays clean, the better the chance of recovery.

 

Post rehab

 

It is important that when the addict re-enters society, he or she does so as an active contributor. Securing housing and employment are of great importance, as is taking up a constructive hobby. Although some addicts may never fully recover, many have gone on to lead normal, healthy and happy lives.

 

Conclusion

 

There is no easy cure for drug addiction. As tragic as it may seem, the final choice to remain clean depends entirely on the individual. We can encourage, assist, treat and support. If the addict does not have the will and determination to remain sober, then we need to expect the worst and pray for the best. Many addicts are able to achieve lasting recovery by getting help after a relapse and learning from their mistakes.

 

If you suspect drug abuse from a friend or relative, consult a medical specialist before confronting the suspected user. His or her insights may prove useful at a time when your very approach could be the difference between the success and failure of the recovery process.


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Heroin Addiction Treatment

Heroin is a highly addictive opiate, making it extremely hard for users to decide to quit using it. It is also extremely difficult for them to face going through the harsh process of quitting it, and take the decision to stay away from it in the future.

The drug is extremely destructive in its effects on the lives of those who use it and their families. It can also adversely affect unborn babies. Heroin can also send ripple effects through society by transmitting diseases like HIV/AIDS and hepatitis when injected with dirty needles and escalations in crime and violence are also associated with its use.

Heroin, a drug synthesized from morphine, can be smoked, inhaled or injected. When injected, it delivers a feeling of euphoria to the brain so rapidly that the risk of addiction is high. In 2011, 4,3million Americans reported having tried it at least once, and it’s thought about one in four of those who use it once are likely to become dependent on it.

Detox is extremely hard because of withdrawal symptoms which kick in faster with this quick-acting drug than from other opiates. Symptoms of withdrawal include muscle and bone pain, involuntary kicking movements, insomnia, diarrhea and vomiting. Although usually not life-threatening, it is best not to try detoxing without supervision.

Medical treatments

To handle the extremely uncomfortable heroin detox, a replacement synthetic drug is often used for heroin addiction. This is given in gradually reducing doses over a period of time. One of the most commonly used drugs is methadone.

In some instances, the detox period is intensified and shortened with medication. The patient is put under anesthesia, so does not experience the same amount of discomfort, and the physical part of the detox process is over more quickly.

After detox, controlled amounts of methadone are often used as part of an administered maintenance program to prevent relapse into heroin addiction. This is done particularly when users have a long history of heroin use or relapses after treatment.

The drug allows for normal function without providing the highs and lows of heroin or the illicit activities or risks involved in its use.

Rehabilitation

Detoxification is just the first step on the road to a heroin-free life. Without a long-term rehabilitation program, relapse is extremely common. As with most drug addiction treatments, there are two options, outpatient and inpatient treatment programs.

Outpatient treatment: During an outpatient program the patient continues to live at home while undergoing treatment. The advantage is that the patient is able to continue going to work each day and resume an ordinary life with the support of family and friends.

However the treatment’s effectiveness can be affected if the addict is not yet ready to face a heroin-free world. This may happen if the home environment contributed to the development of the heroin addiction or carries too many reminders of drug use which could trigger a relapse.

Outpatient rehab recovery programs usually involve 10 to 12 hours a week at a treatment center for anything from three months to over a year. The program includes group and individual counselling and therapy.

Inpatient or residential treatment usually lasts between 30 and 90 days, though it can be longer in more severe addiction cases. Where the facility has the requisite medical support, the center can provide help with assisted detox and continue right through the rehabilitation process. The addict lives and stays on the premises, away from the stressors and triggers of the environment he or she lived in as a heroin user. The entire focus is then on recovery and rehabilitation.

Therapy offered usually aims at helping addicts identify and overcome weaknesses and triggers and finds ways to deal with behavioral problems. Support groups and family counselling are also part of the program, and other activities like exercise, art or even skills-training may be included.

Moving on from heroin use:

Even after an extended inpatient treatment, it would be advisable to continue attending support group meetings and therapy sessions. Many patients choose to sign up at outpatient centers, while others opt for the half-way house or sober living community option as a means of gradually returning to normal life.

Easing your mind:

  • Privacy: Users wishing to undergo rehabilitation needn’t worry about their personal privacy – all rehabilitation centers respect patients’ anonymity.
  • Payment: Help is available for part or all the costs of addiction treatment in terms of most private and state medical insurance plans. In terms of the Affordable Health Care Act (Obamacare) addiction is no longer viewed as a pre-existing condition for insurance purposes, and coverage has to be as complete for it as for any other medical procedure.

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Cocaine Addiction Treatment

According to a National Survey on Drug Use and Health, over 35 million Americans over the age of 12 reported to having used either cocaine or crack at some or other stage. Cocaine addiction accounts for approximately 14% of rehab center admissions.

 

The drug is particularly addictive, both physically and mentally. The “high” associated with cocaine use tends to be short lived; with the result that many addicts tend to combine it with other drugs such as heroin, marijuana and/or Valium. Frequent bingeing or taking multiple doses at once is also common. For these reasons, cocaine is responsible for more emergency hospitalizations than any other illicit drug.

 

Treating cocaine addiction with medication

 

As it currently stands, no pharmacological treatment has as yet been developed for the successful treatment of cocaine addiction. Although several experimental medications have shown moderately promising results in clinical trials, these have not been approved by the FDA for treatment regimes.

 

Other medicines, such as Prozac and/or Disulfiram may be prescribed during the recovery process. Prozac is used to treat depression which is associated with cocaine withdrawal while Disulfiram, which is usually prescribed to treat alcoholism, has produced fairly consistent reductions in cocaine abuse.

 

Additional medications are also being developed to treat the frequent hospitalizations that cocaine is responsible for. Among these is a cocaine vaccine which is designed to block the entry of cocaine into the brain. Although still very much in a clinical trial phase, this vaccine shows great promise in preventing relapse.

 

Behavioral intervention

 

As with any other form of addiction, the successful treatment of cocaine addiction is a complex issue. There is no “one size fits all” technique. What may work for some individuals may prove to be counter-productive to others. Although many patients are able to achieve sobriety through traditional 12 step programs, others find that these approaches are ineffective.

 

Research has shown that a 12 step approach on its own offers a reduced chance of successful recovery. Thanks to advances made in the fields of psychology and psychiatry, the more modern rehabilitation facilities are able to design a treatment regime which is specific to each individual case.

 

Individualized rehabilitation programs are able to include a range of behavioral therapies. These assist the individual in working towards achieving his or her goals. They help to identify triggers, teach the individual to cope with stressful situations which may trigger abuse, and help to develop strong and lasting support networks.

 

Behavioral therapy can be divided into four categories. These are:

  1. Group Therapy. This type of therapy aids the recovery process and teaches the addict how to deal with personal and unresolved issues.
  2. Cognitive therapy. This teaches the addict how to recognize and avoid situations in which they may find themselves pressured or wanting to take drugs.
  3. Motivational encouragement – recovering addicts respond well to a system of incentives and rewards. For example, failure to attend counseling could mean losing privileges while staying clean could be rewarded appropriately.
  4. One on one therapy with a counselor to discuss personal issues and play an active role in the recovery process.

 

Conclusion

 

When undergoing cocaine rehabilitation, it is important that the addict has access to a full range of holistic treatment services. These include attending group and family counseling meetings. It becomes important for the addict to realize that his or her behavior affects others too. Concerned parents, loving spouses and siblings all suffer when they see their loved one submitting to addiction.

 

Private and confidential therapy with a healthcare professional is important as it enables the addict to discuss any personal issues they may have. The patient may feel uncomfortable discussing his or her situation in a group. Here the healthcare professional will be able to answer their questions and deal with concerns without them feeling threatened in any way.

 

Education regarding the hazards of cocaine addiction is also fundamental to the recovery process. These programs teach the individual about the life-threatening situations they may be exposing themselves to. Having the option to partake in a healthy alternative lifestyle, which includes taking up a hobby or participating in a sport is also key to a successful rehabilitation.

 

Finally, while cocaine addiction is very serious, it is important to remember that all hope is not lost. With the right treatment and dedication, it is possible for addicts to recover fully and return to society as healthy and happy individuals.


Poppy and seeds

Opiate addiction treatment

While the most well-known opiates are heroin and Oxycontin, opiates include a wide range of drugs derived from the opium poppy. The plant is used to make morphine and codeine as well as other drugs. Opiates are also created synthetically.

Addiction or dependence can result innocently through long-term use, or overuse, of prescription opiate painkillers following injury or trauma, as well as through deliberate use. In large quantities, opiates provide endorphins, or feel-good hormones, in far greater amounts than the body can produce them on its own. Sadly, exposure to unnaturally large amounts of endorphins can lessen the body’s ability to produce its own endorphins, leading to the need for increasing amounts.

Detox is generally regarded as extremely hard both emotionally and physically. Physical withdrawal symptoms including muscle and bone pain, difficulty breathing, insomnia, palpitations, diarrhea and vomiting. The quicker acting the opiate is, the sooner withdrawal symptoms set in, the more intense they are, but the shorter they last. Fast-acting heroin is the worst.

Although detoxing from opiate addiction is not usually life-threatening unless other medical conditions exist, it is best not to try to go it alone. Rather do it under supervision.

Rehabilitation

The choice of program should be made with the help of your medical doctor, who will take into account your personal needs.

The process of freeing yourself from opiate dependence or addiction starts with detox and progresses with learning how to adjust to a world without these drugs. All programs include therapy aimed at helping you identify and overcome the issues and triggers that fueled your drug abuse, while assisting you to find more effective coping methods. Support groups and family counselling also play a big role.

In some instances, especially with heroin addiction, replacement medication is used for maintenance in order to reduce the high incidence of relapse.

Treatment options

Outpatient treatment: You live at home during the whole process. Even the detox can be conducted through some outpatient centers, with medical care provided for the detox itself and for check-ups afterwards.

You are in a familiar environment with friends and family for support. You can continue going to work and there is also no need to explain lengthy absences from home. Visits to the outpatient center involve about 10 to 12 hours a week over a period of several months.

The disadvantage is that you remain in the same place you were in as a user, and the temptations to relapse could be very strong. If the environment or people in it contributed to your drug use, or you are constantly faced with triggers that make you want to use again, you may be unable to resist relapsing.

Inpatient or residential treatment takes you out of your known environment, with its distractions and triggers, and lets you focus entirely on your recovery and rehabilitation. It provides you with a complete break from your previous life and lifestyle.

Although some people feel uncomfortable about what others might think of their entering a drug rehab, there is no need for concern. Rehabilitation centers protect patients’ anonymity.

Many inpatient facilities can take you through the detox process as well as the rehabilitation. You stay on the premises for the full program, which can run for between one and three months and sometimes longer. Care and guidance is immediately available, and you are surrounded by people who know what you are going through.

In addition to providing the therapies included in all drug addiction treatment programs, many centres offer added features like exercise and activities as well art and craft programs. Even skills training is sometimes available.

Moving forward

The process should not be rushed. Even an extended period at a residential treatment center might not be enough to ensure abstinence in the long term. It may be a good idea to consider the advantages of a sober living community, where you can ease your way back into life outside the rehabilitation center.

It is also possible continue with outpatient treatment, receiving therapy and counselling for a while longer, while adapting to living at home. Support groups can also provide continued assistance.

The costs involved

The Affordable Health Care Act, or Obamacare, has meant that addiction treatment can no longer be viewed as a pre-existing condition in terms of medical insurance and that coverage for it must be just as complete for it as it is for any other medical procedure.  This means that most medical insurance plans will pay at least part, if not all, of the costs involved, depending on what treatment you choose and where you choose to undergo it.