When confronted with a drug abuser or addict who is destroying their life through continued drug use, many individuals wonder why they seem entirely bent on self-destruction and why they simply don’t stop. The truth is that drug abuse and addiction are very complex and difficult problems that include a strong compulsion to continue one’s drug-seeking behavior despite the devastating consequences. An individual may have chosen to take drugs voluntarily at one point, usually because they felt that drugs would help them change or handle some undesirable condition in their life. After initial drug use, the individual usually still has a choice: to either end or continue their relationship with drugs. Some individuals wisely choose to end their relationship with drugs, and move forward into a healthy, happy, productive and drug-free life. Other individuals decide that drug use is pleasurable and helpful, and they continue to use drug substances.
Over time, an individual’s ability to choose whether or not to use drugs becomes compromised, and their body grows to depend upon drug substances. The individual may no longer experience the same or even any pleasurable effects as a result of their drug use, but without continued drug use they are forced to face the extreme discomfort of a damaged, unhealthy and ill body. Their emotions regarding their drug use, their inability to control their drug use, the damages that have resulted from their drug use and their general discontent with life can seem so overwhelming as to be insurmountable, which may serve to further drive their compulsive drug seeking behavior. Some individuals who are suffering from extensive drug addiction problems may come to believe that death is the only way out of their problems, since regaining control over their life seems entirely impossible. In fact, if one looks hard enough they can find numerous stories about individuals who actually lost their life to drugs, were miraculously resuscitated, and then relapsed right back into drug use. One’s choice and willpower has nothing to do with it, they need professional support and treatment in order to thoroughly address and resolve their drug abuse and addiction problems.
About Drug Treatment
The goal of drug rehabilitation treatment is to help restore an individual to their ability to live a healthy, productive life that is free from drug use. In order for drug abuse and addiction treatment to lead to lasting success, it must help the individual stop using drugs, cleanse their body of residual drug toxins that threaten their future sobriety, take responsibility for their past actions and the damages their drug use caused for self and others, rebuild their self-confidence and self-respect, learn how to maintain a drug-free lifestyle, and gain the tools and abilities they need to become a productive member of their family and society. Simply abstaining from drug use for a period of time does not lead to lasting sobriety, as evidenced by the revolving door of rehabilitation treatment often exhibited by celebrities. Whether treatment is in the form of outpatient treatment, where the individual participates in treatment on a specific schedule while returning to their home each evening, or inpatient treatment, where the individual resides at the treatment facility for the duration of their treatment program and receives around-the-clock care and support from trained medical professionals, effective rehabilitation treatment understands that:
- Drug abuse and addiction are complex but treatable conditions.
There is no single treatment option that is appropriate for everyone who is suffering from drug abuse and addiction problems.
- Drug treatment needs to be readily available to individuals who need it.
- Drug treatment programs need to address the specific needs of each individual.
- Drug treatment needs to last long enough to help the individual fully address and resolve all the causes and effects of their drug use.
- Counseling services are some of the most common forms of drug treatment, and can help the individual address underlying emotional issues that led to or perpetuated drug use.
- Physical detoxification if a vital component to full recovery, but it is only a first step and must be followed by other rehabilitation treatment services.
Normally, an effective drug rehabilitation treatment program includes physical detoxification to help the individual withdraw from drug use as safely and comfortably as possible and eliminate residual drug toxins that can lead to future cravings and relapses, counseling services to help the individual address the root causes for their initial drug use and begin to rebuild the self-confidence and self-respect necessary to a healthy future, and rehabilitation services that help the individual gain the tools and abilities they will need to not only fully recover from drug abuse and addiction but also lay the foundation for a healthier, happier future. Some additional services that can be extremely helpful during the recovery process include:
- Music and art therapy – to help the individual express difficult emotions they may not be able to verbalize and to help the individual learn how to relax and relieve stress.
- Physical fitness and nutrition – to aid the individual in restoring their physical health and well-being, which can in turn help the individual feel better and more dedicated to achieving and maintaining lasting sobriety.
- Martial arts and yoga – to help the individual learn how to cope with stress, strengthen their discipline and build a strong connection between their body and mind.
- Resume writing and GED – to help the individual prepare for a secure and successful future as a productive, contributing member of society.
- Relapse prevention – to help the individual learn how to identify and avoid or resolve relapse triggers that may arise through their normal life environments and routines.
- Handling emotional tone levels – to help the individual learn how to cope with difficult emotions, like anger, so that these emotions don’t control their life and drive them back into drug use and addiction.
- Transitional living – to help the individual smoothly and confidently transition from rehabilitation treatment to normal life environments while continuing to receive the help and support they need to remain sober.
- Therapeutic treatment – to help the individual calm their mind and relax their body, especially during withdrawal and detoxification.
Financial planning and problem solving – to help the individual prepare for a financially sound future, and learn how to deal with any sort of financial or other life problem that may arise through the normal course of living.
- 12 step groups – to help the individual take charge of their life and future by taking simple steps in the direction of lasting sobriety and receiving support and encouragement from others.
Drug treatment can sometimes be a long, difficult process, but the individual who finds himself becoming impatient has to remember what they are trying to do: rebuild a life that has been utterly destroyed by drug use. The time spent in thoroughly recovering from all the physical, mental and emotional damages of drug use and building the sturdy foundation necessary for a happy, healthy and productive future will be well worth it when the individual not only recognizes that their entire life is once again before them, but they actually desire to grab it by the horns and live it to the fullest.