Drug Addiction Recovery

A complete and successful drug addiction recovery can require a professionally monitored treatment plan as well as the support and encouragement of family and loved ones. Traditional twelve step programs have been used successfully used to help individuals overcome challenging and dangerous addictions. The first step in these programs is to identify the problem. An understanding of the substance that is causing the addiction will greatly impact treatment. Helping the addicted patient to come to grips with the seriousness of the problem is crucial as well. In a twelve step program there will be spiritual elements included as well. The second step will generally point a patient in the direction of a higher power. Seeking help from this higher power is a central tenant of twelve step programs and is regarded as the third step. Step four involves uncovering the underlying causes of addictions while step five encourages the addict to accept that they have a problem. Steps six and seven pertain to reaching out to God for help while also taking personal responsibility. Steps eight, nine, and ten deal with righting past wrongs, showing forgiveness and compassion to others and changing behavior patterns. The eleventh and twelfth steps deal with a continued relationship with God and reaching out to help others. This plan for drug addiction recovery has proven to be very successful.

For parents, seeking drug addiction recovery for a child can be particularly painful. Often an adolescent child will be involved in drugs without a parent's knowledge. There are certain warning signs that a parent can look for if they suspect that a child has a problem with drugs. If the youngster has suddenly become withdrawn from the rest of the family, this could be an indicator of a problem. An unexpected disregard for the rules that the parents have established can also be indicative of a problem. Other warning signs could include a sudden change in personality as well as emotional outbursts. Of course, many of these symptoms are just part of normal adolescent behavior. This can make it difficult for a caring parent to determine whether or not a child has a substance abuse problem. If the offspring is suddenly hanging with a suspect group of friends, this can of course be a major red flag. Students who had at one time excelled in school but have an abrupt fall off in grades, parents should take note. Early intervention can be very important if drug addiction recovery is to be successful. The Bible assures those who are in need that God is with them. "For the needy shall not always be forgotten: the expectation of the poor shall not perish for ever." (Psalm 9:18)

In most cases, the entire family should be included in a drug addition recovery treatment plan. Helping families to cope with the reality of a substance abuse problem is one of the services that professionals in this field will offer. Families may be in denial when it comes to the severity of the problem. For the addict, loved ones can be the final catalyst that provides motivation to reach out for treatment. A number of painful emotions can come into play for the family, friends and loved ones of the recovering addict. Parents can feel a great deal of guilt, shame, and embarrassment. It is all too easy to for family members to question themselves and wonder whether or not the problem is due to something that they did. Counseling and help is very important for these families. If the addict is unwilling to seek drug addiction recovery treatment, this can add a whole new set of problems. Professionals in the field may be able to help loved ones stage an intervention with the addicted family member. In some case, the confronted addict will submit to treatment because of the influence of other family members. By effectively bringing the problem to a head, a professionally led intervention can turn even the most difficult situation around.

Learning to handle stress is another crucial part of any drug addiction recovery program. The process of recovering from addictions can certainly be stressful. Learning about stress management as well as obtaining effective coping tools can mean the difference between success and failure for many recovering addicts. Recognizing the things that can trigger stress will be a major first step in dealing with this aspect of recovery. Once these triggers have been identified it is possible to take steps to handle such triggers in the most effective way. In some cases, stress can take a heavy toll without the patient being fully aware of what is happening. Signs of unacknowledged stress can include sleep issues, headaches, irritability, moodiness, fatigue, digestive problems, and a sense of being overwhelmed.

Most drug addiction recovery programs will also include behavior modification techniques. For many addicts, the ability to handle basic life responsibilities may be compromised. Re learning crucial life skills is necessary before the recovered addict can attempt to return to normal life. Part of this therapy may also include learning to find the needed motivation to press through difficult times and live a life that is free from drugs. Therapy that includes family members and loved ones is very important. In many instances a family member or loved one will have allowed themselves to be put in a co dependent position. Breaking these unhealthy patterns and learning to function in a productive way is all part of a successful drug addiction recovery.

Drug Addiction Counseling

Results-oriented drug addiction counseling requires a comprehensive approach that not only rehabilitates addicts, but also addresses the underlying cause of chemical dependency. People delve into drug use for different reasons; some to cope with life's failures and disappointments, others to be accepted by peers, and some to forget about the pain of present, past or future conflicts. From wayward adolescent runaways to desperate and depressed housewives, society is fast becoming a culture of people seeking to escape reality. Behavioral therapists and counselors strive to uncover the root cause of substance abuse by conducting one-on-one consultations with people who opt to enroll in rehabilitation programs. Some have reached the end of their rope, and come to the realization that professional intervention -- whether faith-based or secular --is the only way out of the vicious cycle of chemical dependency.

The source of abuse can begin with a desire deferred, a hope denied, or a lifetime riddled with physical or sexual abuse, a dysfunctional family environment, absentee father, or abusive mother. "Hope deferred maketh the heart sick, but when the desire cometh, it is a tree of life" (Proverbs 13:12). Whatever the cause or catalyst for substance abuse, drug addiction counseling must follow a direct and holistic approach to produce a cure and an individual capable of reentering society. Therapy usually starts with an assessment of each program participant by an impartial clinician. Counselors listen intently to participant's verbal and non-verbal responses to a specific set of questions. Drug addiction counseling explores past medical histories, criminal backgrounds, employment records, and past behavioral treatment rendered to clients. Medical histories will reveal conditions which may have contributed to substance abuse. Many times, individuals get hooked on pain killers, tranquilizers, or over-the-counter drugs. Some establish a pattern of dependency on prescription medicines, often finding emotional relief and stimuli from a pill bottle rather than facing people, places and things which are disconcerting. Patient records may reveal multiple prescriptions for the same drug obtained from several different physicians. In the case of prescription drug abuse, counselors will recommend gradually weaning program participants off of medicines while addressing emotional issues.

Criminal background checks will reveal incidences of incarceration related to substance abuse, such as street drug usage, prostitution, or theft to support habits. Therapists that specialize in drug addiction counseling have probably heard every conceivable scenario when it comes to criminal substance abuse from sex-for-hire to gambling and money laundering. The drug culture is a virtual breeding ground for criminals to develop lifetimes of illegal activities to support their addictions. Long-term users will stop at nothing to feed a habit which is all encompassing and ravages the soul, the body and spirit. Dependency on opiates, such as cocaine, marijuana, heroin, and methadone, will be evident from arrest records and criminal background checks. Effective drug addiction counseling will entail investigating incarceration records and treating program participants for specific drug-related ailments. The use of opiates creates physical, mental and psychological impairment that may take months of treatment to overcome. Cocaine causes heart failure, strokes, and short term memory loss. Depression, agitation, disorientation, and even thoughts of suicide may result from using opiates, amphetamines, and barbiturates. Some users suffer debilitating physical and emotional maladies which must be addressed during therapy.

Before therapists can proceed with reprogramming an addict's propensity toward drug use, participants must undergo a detoxification process to rid the system of harmful chemicals and byproducts. Drugs are generally plant-based and can contain toxins and additives that can destroy the mindm, the soul, and the body. Users are unaware of the purity of street drugs, how they are manufactured, or whether pushers have processed drugs under sanitary conditions. Unlike prescription medicines, street drugs are not approved by the Federal Drug Administration; and their production under less than sanitary conditions can prove lethal. Detoxification cleanses the body in preparation for the emotional cleansing drug addiction counseling provides.

While in therapy, addicts are led along the difficult road to recovery as counselors help them uncover some painful truths, annihilate negative perceptions, and rebuild the participant's capacity to think clearly, realistically, and objectively. Professional counseling can unearth years of pent up emotions, un-forgiveness, or self-loathing, triggers for chemical dependency. Behavioral institutions often pair counselors with patients conducive or relevant to the client's background or environment. Cognitive behavioral therapy plays a key role in drug addiction counseling. Therapists seek to establish trust and build a rapport with clients in order to facilitate dialogue. Young females who use street drugs because of histories of sexual abuse may confide in older female therapists as a substitute or surrogate for the mother that once provided nurturing during childhood. Male addicts may resent an absentee father, but feel comfortable consulting with older females that resemble the grandmothers that reared them.

Once a productive dialogue has been established, therapists will employ cognitive behavioral therapy techniques, including individual and group psychotherapy sessions, to keep clients engaged in talking about issues of concern. Confronting and discussing painful events helps rid addicts of some of the demons that initially caused chemical dependency; just as detoxification rids the physical body of mind-altering substances. Engaging in regular dialogue with counselors and peers helps patients confront tough issues, many of which they may have never discussed otherwise. Deep-seated, unresolved emotions, anger, resentment and bitterness can provoke people to do desperate and self-damaging things. Many spend years blindly following a course of degradation and demoralization. The ultimate goal of drug addiction counseling is to treat the whole individual and help people who have somehow lost their way get back on the road to a wholesome life.

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