Addiction is when a person ingests some sort of substance that provides pleasure, such as drugs or alcohol, or performs an activity that causes pleasure, such as gambling or eating. The jolt of pleasure will result in a person wanting to perform the action or consume the substance again and again, until it is compulsive and begins to cause him or her to be non-functioning. It is very common for a person to compulsively engage in activities when he or she is in a state of emotional or mental stress, and addiction treatment programs are available to help with assistance.
There are several different types of addiction. The first is physical, which is when a person’s body starts needing the drug in order for him or her to function normally and not suffer withdrawals. The second type of addiction is mental addiction, which depends on triggers that will cause the person to want to engage in the behavior. An example of this would be a person who is trying to stop smoking feeling an increased desire to smoke when he or she passes a store that sells cigarettes or smells cigarette smoke.
There is a very strong link between mental illness and substance and behavior addiction. Using substances tends to exacerbate the symptoms of mental illness and causes it to greatly worsen. Using substances can also cause a mental illness to manifest for the first time, such as when a person drinks to the point of blacking out and the mental stress causes the first symptoms of schizophrenia to show up. Finally, a person who already has mental illness may turn to substances and destructive behaviors to cope with the stress and discomfort that having such an illness causes. This makes a person with mental illness more likely to become addicted to a substance or activity. When both substance addiction and mental illness are present in the same person, then he or she is considered to have a dual diagnosis. When this is the case, both the mental illness and the addiction need to be treated at the same time with an appropriate addiction treatment program.
There are some situations that will require immediate hospitalization. A person who has used alcohol to the point of being severely intoxicated will need to be hospitalized in situations that have the potential to result in death. Certain drugs, such as amphetamines, cocaine, and crack, will speed up a person’s heart. If a person takes these drugs that does not have a strong heart, then they could trigger massive heart failure. When this is the case, that person will need to be hospitalized immediately.
Using drugs that slow a person’s central nervous system, such as opiates and clonazepam, can be taken to excess and result in death. If a person, after taking the drugs, seems to be having problems, he or she needs intensive medical care.
A step down from immediate hospitalization is inpatient care. This usually manifests in the form of a rehabilitation center. There are numerous different services that a rehabilitation center is able to provide for its patients.
Detoxing from a substance is extremely dangerous because it results in a large number of highly unpleasant and dangerous side effects, including seizures, hallucinations, and acute delirious states that have the potential to kill a person. In order to ensure that the detoxification process goes as smoothly as possible, it is recommended to detox in a safe addiction treatment rehabilitation center, where people will be able to constantly check on the person who is going through the process and ensure that the situation is safe. It is critical to get all of the drugs out of a person’s system in order for treatment to progress.
Individual therapy is the heart of any addiction treatment program because it provides a chance for a person to explore his or her addiction and him or herself in order to determine what triggers exist, why he or she started using drugs in the first place, and how to cope with the compulsions to use drugs. Individual therapists will be able to work with their patients to figure out alternative behaviors that could replace substance abuse or engagement in harmful behaviors as coping methods for unpleasant feelings and situations.
Another important pillar of addiction treatment programs is group therapy, which is the opportunity for those with similar problems to talk with one another. The group will be moderated by a professional addictions therapist, but other than that, the conversation will usually flow freely. Group members can empathize with one another and make the other members feel as though they are understood and supported. They can also offer tips with regards to avoiding relapse and share personal stories to accelerate the healing process.
Family therapy is a critical component to any addiction program because families tend to be one of the strongest forms of support a patient can enjoy. In order to maximize family relationships or heal broken ones, it is important for the patient, the family, and a medical professional to come together to talk it out. The family might be hurt by the patient’s actions, or vice versa. If these issues are addressed, the patient has a much greater chance for recovery. If they cannot be resolved, then the decision to no longer engage with the family can be made to increase a person’s chances of recovery.
There are a multitude of different specialty therapies, including art therapy and movement therapy, that offer additional outlets for a person to express his or her emotions. A lot of people suffering from addictions will have an excessive amount of strong emotions that could cause them a great deal of stress if not expressed. These additional outlets for expression could decrease a person’s stress levels.
The goal of most addiction treatment facilities is to ensure that the patients know exactly what they are going through in the hopes that fully understanding it will lead to recovery being less challenging. As a result, many of the different components of addiction will be discussed, breaking it down into parts so that it will seem more manageable.
Leaving a treatment facility can seem like a terrifying prospect. It means that a person will be exposed to the triggers that will cause him or her to want to use or engage in behaviors. In order to make the transition go as smoothly as possible, a rehabilitation center and the patient will develop a plan. This plan will have several different components.
The most important part of any discharge plan is to determine where a patient is going to live. Many patients used to live in situations where they regularly used or engaged in behaviors. In order to decrease the chances of relapse, new living situations will need to be found.
A patient might as well not have gone to drug addiction rehab if he or she stops treatment the moment the inpatient care facility is left. In order to maintain recovery, a patient will need to have a coherent plan for treatment. There are several different options ranging in levels of intensity, from day treatment programs which are six hours a day, five days a week, to intensive outpatient programs, which are three hours a day, three days a week, to groups, which are a few hours once a week. Appointments with a therapist are a crucial component of any program.
One of the most dangerous parts of any person’s recovery is spare time. When a person is busy, he or she is less likely to use or engage in behaviors. Therefore, it is important to fill up free time before a person becomes idle. Continued care programs will fill up some of the time, but additional support will be needed. Signing up for classes, volunteering, and engaging in personal hobbies are all excellent choices for staying engaged.