Addiction affects many parts of the body, hindering a person’s ability to stop using a substance without significant effects of withdrawal. It can be hard to live with substance abuse; families may struggle to help someone suffering, while that person knows that no matter how hard he tries, he can’t step away from his addictions.
Fortunately, substance abuse therapies can help you and the people you love get off drugs and stay sober. Addiction is an emotional, psychological, and physical disease that takes a toll on the body and mind; with right treatments, anyone can overcome those issues and start living a sober lifestyle.
Dependency is a multifaceted condition; there are many ways it can influence a person’s life. A person could need to take drugs to avoid withdrawal; another could have severe cravings that force him to always carry drugs on him, risking arrest if he’s caught.
Treatments for addiction are nearly as varied as the patients who need them. The facilities full of doctors and nurses who specialize in substance abuse recognize the fact that no two patients are the same. That means that treatments can’t be the same for everyone, either.
Each person addicted to a substance needs to find the right treatment to suit his or her needs. If that’s a system without the use of medications, one with animals that assist healing, or one focused on group therapy, then that’s what the person deserves to have access to.
12-Step based addiction therapy utilizes the 12 Steps of Alcoholics Anonymous as a basis for treating drug & alcohol addiction. It is one of the most utilized method for sustaining ongoing recovery.Learn More
Adventure Therapy is a form of psychotherapy that utilizes learning through outdoor activities how to cope with emotional stresses, mental health, and their drug & alcohol abuse issues with nature.Learn More
Cognitive behavioral therapy is a form of psychotherapy that addresses client's self-destructive thought patterns and harmful behaviors by changing thoughts and behaviors to overcome addiction.Learn More
In confrontational therapy sessions, clients are asked to deal with their problems by confronting them head on in a slightly aggressive manner, to help them overcome their issues and find recovery.Learn More
Addiction is many times considered a family disease. Family-based therapy assists clients and their families is overcoming drug abuse issues as well as family dynamics, resentments and boundary issues.Learn More
Group therapy is one of the most commonly used forms of therapy in addiction treatment. Many times clients attend group therapy throughout their daily routine to build coping skills & relapse prevention skills..Learn More
Many treatment centers have begun using holistic therapies such as yoga, meditation, massages, nutrition and diet, etc. to their treatment therapies to help achieve recovery of the mind, body & spirit.Learn More
Life-skills training is employed by many treatment programs to help teach clients the necessary daily life-skills needed to be productive members of society once a client leaves treatment. This includes cooking, career help, etc.Learn More
One of the most critical therapies is relapse prevention education. Relapse is a part of addiction recovery, but doesn't have to be. Relapse prevention techniques can help a client live a life of on-going recovery from addiction.Learn More
Wilderness therapy uses nature and the outdoors to challenge clients to utilize survival skills to learn to solve problems, deal with stress & anxiety, learn how to deal with stress and recover from drug abuse.Learn More
In truth, addiction is a disease that affects the body much like any kind of disorder or health condition would. While some people may not understand how someone could become addicted to drugs or alcohol, the fact is that addiction is a disease that can make some people more prone to addictive tendencies. Sometimes, people think that those who become addicted to drugs or alcohol simply make bad choices; that’s not entirely true. These people may have good intentions and willpower, but that doesn’t mean that they can overcome or suddenly create the physical ability to stop the withdrawal symptoms and problems associated with quitting.
It’s known that drug addiction has serious repercussions for a society. It’s been estimated that around $600 billion is spent in the United States annually as a result of substance abuse, a loss in productivity, and health-related costs
Therapies focus on harmful behaviors and how they can be changed into neutral thoughts and actions.
Cognitive Behavioral Therapy is one of the most commonly used forms of psychotherapy in addiction treatment.
Therapy, medications, and complementary or alternative treatments can help patients balance a dual-diagnosis with substance abuse treatment.
Addiction manifests in many ways depending on the patient. It may be a result of long-term medications used in treatments for a disorder or disease, or it could be after a single hit of an illicit drug. Cravings are generally one of the first signs of addiction, and this is when people should start to seek help with the condition.
Addiction is different for everyone who suffers from it; some people may be more genetically prone to developing an addiction, while others are struggling with a dual-diagnosis condition that makes it more likely to have addictive tendencies. The motivations and triggers that result in a person becoming addicted or starting on a path to addiction are different for everyone, and it’s not always clear what the motivation is.
There are some personality types that are more likely to suffer addiction. These include those with immature personalities, like teens or young adults, those with anti-social personalities, who may be dealing with depression or anxiety, and those who want to punish themselves. Others may be passive-aggressive in nature, while stressed individuals may also turn to drug use for relief.
Gender may also play a role in who becomes addicted to drugs. In the past, studies have shown that women are more likely to become addicted to drugs such as tranquillizers and painkillers, while men are more likely to become addicted to alcohol and cannabis.
There are many kinds of therapies available during substance abuse treatment. Some are listed in the sections below, although there may be more options at the facility of your choice. Each kind of therapy can be designed to suit the individual, helping them work through their addictions and toward a healthier, happier lifestyle.
The best part about these therapies is that they can go on for as long or short of a time as necessary. If a therapy isn’t working for a patient, it can be stopped. Another can always be tried in its place. Therapies in an inpatient program, for instance, usually take place for between 30 and 180 days, but patients can also choose to extend their sessions after they finish the initial program. That can be a helpful way to maintain sobriety with minimal influence from the medical community.
Group therapy is a specific form of counseling that is used to treat psychological disorders including substance abuse and addiction.
According to recent studies, group therapy that is offered in an inpatient setting appears to be more effective at helping clients overcome their addiction by focusing on treating anxiety, painful withdrawal and symptoms of depression.
Major depressive disorder affects around 14.8 million adults in America, and it is common in a dual diagnosis.
Cognitive-behavioral therapy is a therapy that helps patients by changing the way they think and respond to a stimulus. For instance, if a person has a trigger that makes him nervous, that nervous energy may lead him to smoke to calm down. If instead the person can have that trigger make him happy or change his reaction to exercising instead of smoking, for example, then he can change the outcome of the influence.
Cognitive-behavioral therapy is most commonly used for those suffering from anxiety and depression, but it can be used for anyone who wants to change how they react to external stimuli or internal conflicts. The goal of CBT is to help you recognize your actions, so you can take control of how you decide to react in a positive manner.
When a patient meets the criteria for more than one condition, it’s known as a dual diagnosis. Dual-diagnosis patients meet the criteria for both a mental health disorder and an addiction disorder.
These individuals are treated slightly differently than those with only an addiction or only a mental health condition. Dual-diagnosis treatments are still new; they were only beginning to be recognized in the 1990s. Today, dual-diagnosis treatments help by managing both the underlying mental health condition as well as the addiction.
To start with, a patient may be diagnosed. Sometimes, patients have not been diagnosed with a mental health condition in the past, so they didn’t know to get help or medications for it. For instance, a patient who doesn’t know he’s bipolar may never have been stabilized, leading to addiction or drug binging during manic or depressive phases.
By identifying the underlying mental health condition, that condition can be managed with medications and behavior therapies. The addiction can then be properly addressed, since one of the major triggers, the mental-health condition, is now being monitored and may be under control.
The treatment for a dual-diagnosis patient includes bringing family and friends into meetings to talk about the conditions and the importance of the individual having support. The person seeking help may need antidepressants, anti-anxiety medications, or other psychotherapeutic drugs, and the importance of taking them regularly needs to be made obvious.
Therapy during the recovery process includes programs that reinforce self-esteem and self-confidence.
Rational emotive behavior therapy, which is known as REBT, is a psychotherapy that focuses on resolving a patient’s emotional and behavioral concerns. The goal of this therapy is to allow the individual to live a more confident, happy life without anxiety, stress, or negativity.
Patients start by learning the “A, B, C, D, E, and F” model of psychological disturbances and changes. A describes the adversity or influencing event. B represents what the person believes about that event. C is the consequences of the actions the person is going to take. D refers to disputing, which is when the individual begins to discuss and determine why he or she acts the way he does. E stands for an effective new philosophy, which is when the patient has the notion that he or she doesn’t have to react in a particular way and has the potential to change. F represents feelings; these are new feels and behaviors that are appropriate to the A, or event, that initially took place.
Here’s an example of how this might work. If a patient is under much stress feeling that he must live up to the expectations of others, it can be a feeling that causes anxiety, anger, or depression. The individual may discuss why he feels he must perform so well; what would happen if he didn’t do so? Once the person realizes the consequences of his actions, in this case, anxiety or depression that may lead to substance abuse, he can consider why he turns to a destructive behavior. After that, he can determine a new way of looking at the situation and a new outlet for anxiety or depressive behaviors. Finally, he can have resolved feelings and a new outlook on the situation. This may help him react in a new way that doesn’t lead to substance abuse, but instead to a healthier outlet for his concerns.
Alternative therapies, like art or music therapy, can be helpful for individuals of an artistic nature. Art, for example, can be a good way for those who don’t want to talk about their emotions or problems initially to express themselves. It can be an outlet for anxiety or depression and a way for others to understand what’s happening.
Coloring therapy, which focuses on allowing patient to quiet the mind through peaceful relaxation and coloring, can also be of assistance for those who have high-stress moments or anxiety.
Music therapy can be beneficial, whether or not the patient plays an instrument. Listening to music, singing, or playing an instrument all provide an emotional outlet that can give a patient a way to reach out and connect with others.
Both therapies can give patients a way to interact in times of stress, anxiety, happiness, or depression without turning to drugs or other substances. The new hobbies are tools for the future that can help the individual focus on his or her internal mood and the needs he or she has at the present time.
Animal-assisted therapy is fantastic for those who have anxiety, depression or other conditions. It can help those who think they may relapse have a pet at home that can stop them or comfort them during withdrawal cravings.
Pets are ideal for those who sometimes turn inward in times of stress or anxiety. Pets require walking, feeding, and so on, which means the person can’t ignore them or be disassociated. Pets give a person a friend and companion while also opening up the opportunity to meet others with pets or those who simply want to talk as well. Having a pet requires caring for another living being, and that can help patients take their minds off themselves and place their thoughts on caring for someone else.
The idea of holistic therapies is that you’re getting closer to nature and better understanding your body. Holistic therapies can be helpful on their own or with the addition of a professional treatment plan.
Holistic therapies are meant to be complimentary, and that means that as many can be used as a patient needs. Holistic therapies treat the mind, body, and spirit, not just the physical. Sometimes, these holistic treatments can be combined for an even more intense treatment program.
It’s known that human touch can reduce stress, lower blood pressure, and aid in healing. Massage itself addresses the mind, body, and spirit. It physically releases tension in the body, aids in circulation, and can help a person reduce stress. It affects the sympathetic nervous system, helping it calm and reduce immune response, thus reducing inflammation in the body.
Massage can encourage deep levels of relaxation and peace, self-awareness and acceptance. It may also help the patient feel closer to others through touch and contact.
Aromatherapy is sometimes used with massage therapy. This is a process wherein essential oils are used to create scents or are placed on the skin. The oils from various plants and herbs have been shown to support emotional balance, encourage stress relied, and to provide a feeling of calm and well-being. Many essential oils can be included in massage creams and treatments, so patients get the full benefit of both the massage and the oils of their choice.
Aromatherapy was first used in ancient times. It was common for the Egyptians to use these oils on the skin for healing. Likewise, the Chinese used oils to burn for harmony and balance in the home and body. In around 460 to 377 BC, Hippocrates, the man considered to be the father of medicine, used aromatherapy in combination with baths and massages to promote health.
The term aromatherapy has been in place since the 20th Century, when a French chemist discovered the healing powers of lavender essential oils in his laboratory.
Another thing that could be combined with massage is reflexology, although it can also be used on its own. Reflexology has been around since ancient times as well, and it was often used in Egypt. Reflexology in the West began with Zone Therapy, which was created by Dr. William H. Fitzgerald, M.D. His initial discovery was that when certain areas of the hands or feet were compressed, pain and the cause of the pain could be relieved. Another doctor, Dr. Shelby Riley, M.D. later expanded his therapy with horizontal zones on the hands and feet that relate to other sections of the body. Eunice D. Ingham, a physical therapist, took the treatments further by recognizing that the reflexes on the feet corresponded to the organs in the body. By mapping those zones onto a reflexology chart, it’s possible to relieve pain and to recognize other conditions through the hands and feet alone.
Acupuncture is an East Asian medicine that was designed over 2,500 years ago. With the use of thin needles, the surface of the body is punctured and stimulated. Sometimes, these needles have essential oils or other medications on their tips; other times, they are warmed or cooled to suit the patient.
The insertion of the needles is said to stimulate health by increasing healing, reducing pain, and encouraging better circulation. It’s been found in research that the use of acupuncture can help prevent relapses and encourage cessation.
Substance abuse therapies look at a patient as a whole; the idea of the therapies is not to look at what the patient has done wrong, but instead to aid the body in healing and the mind in moving forward toward a healthier future. Part of substance abuse therapy is physical, but emotionally, it’s necessary for patients to accept their pasts in order to move forward. That’s why combining treatments with therapy sessions and relaxation techniques can be beneficial to patients from all walks of life.
Addiction can be successfully treated; like any other disease, it requires therapies, medications and ongoing maintenance. Not all addictions can be cured, but many people live with chronic diseases and manage them without severe relapses or health concerns. The same can be true about those with addictions.
Addiction therapies help patients get a grip on their own lives. They learn to manage their conditions and find new ways to address anxiety, depression, or triggers that could result in a relapse. Even if a relapse does occur, that doesn’t mean the treatment has failed. Addiction is a chronic disease, and because of that, it’s not unlikely for someone to relapse. However, using a variety of substance abuse therapies can aid recovery and help prevent addiction relapses in the future.
The most successful substance abuse treatments combine both physical and emotional support. Behavior therapies, which can help patients avoid triggers or change their behaviors, along with the physical care needed to stop physical cravings and dependency, can give a patient a new outlook and better chance of success in the future. Substance abuse therapies can be continued for a lifetime; they don’t have to stop at the end of an initial inpatient or outpatient stay.
After leaving a recovery program, some patients continue to go to 12-step programs, meet with therapists, or continue massage or other holistic alternatives. These ongoing therapies are supportive; they provide a patient an outlet for their concerns and a way to treat stress or to address triggers in a healthy manner.