Individuals often assume an addict won’t seek help unless forced. This is not the case. A person who is using drugs or alcohol to get through life may recognize he or she has a problem and seek help. When doing so, it can be difficult to know where to turn or what steps to take. If a person is ready to accept that he or she has a problem with substance abuse, the following steps should be taken right away.
Accept Help Is Needed
Addicts often state they have the willpower to quit on their own. Unfortunately, this is typically not the case. When a person uses a drug, it actually alters the brain in one or more ways. These changes make use of the drug a compulsion. Furthermore, they bring about cravings the addict may not be able to resist.
For these reasons, a person will probably need substance abuse treatment offered by professionals to counteract the changes and recover from the addiction. Without this help, the chances of relapse tend to be much higher and the addict spirals downward once again.
Build a Support System
A person addicted to drugs or alcohol may feel they cannot share their secrets with others. Often, they are under the mistaken impression that others don’t know they are using. Sadly, this is frequently not the case. By sharing the addiction with others, a person will find he or she can begin building a support system that will be present at the recovery process moves forward. This typically consists of family and friends who are worried about the addict, but it may also include mental health professionals, a medical team, and substance abuse counselors among others.
Every person in this system needs to work to help the addict move forward with a life free from drugs. Anyone who does not fall into this category needs to be removed from the addict’s life. Although it can be difficult to lose one’s friends, it’s worth it in the end when the addict is free from the substance and happier and healthier as a result.
Prescription Medications Are Safe
Men and women often assume that drugs provided by a medical professional are safe for use. However, a person can become addicted to prescription painkillers and other substances just as easily as someone using illicit drugs. While prescription medications may be helpful in the short run, over time a person may find they cannot stop taking the medication without assistance. They need more to achieve the same effect or they take someone else’s prescription and find they now have a problem stopping the use of the drug. Speak to the prescribing doctor to determine the best course of action and turn to a substance abuse treatment facility if help is not received after taking this step.
Hitting Rock Bottom Isn’t Necessary
Loved ones are often told an addict must hit rock bottom before he or she will be willing to accept help. Nothing is further from the truth. When an addict states they need assistance in kicking their habit, people must be ready to step in. This is where the support system becomes of great help. They are ready to assist the addict in any way they can to free him or her from the grips of the drug. In fact, starting treatment early often produces the best results because the addiction isn’t as strong. Additionally, there are likely fewer changes in the brain to overcome.
Involuntary Treatment Does Work
Don’t believe those who say involuntary treatment won’t be of help to an addict. Some men and women who have a substance abuse problem successfully complete programs after being forced to do so and have great results. In fact, a person who chooses to enter treatment and a person required to take part in a program of this type have equal chances of success. As the drug is removed from the body and the person begins to think clearly again, he or she may come to the realization that a problem exists and must be addressed.
An addict may relapse only to think beating the addiction is hopeless. This isn’t the case. It may simply be a matter of finding the right treatment facility for the addict’s unique needs. However, in certain situations, it might be a question of addressing underlying issues that contribute to the addiction. For instance, an addict may also be suffering from a mental illness.
If the mental illness isn’t treated in conjunction with the addiction, the chances of relapse increase significantly. Once the mental illness makes an appearance again after treatment, the addict chooses to turn to drugs or alcohol to self-medicate. By identifying and working to resolve all mental and physical issues, a person addicted to drugs or alcohol may find he or she can kick the habit with less difficulty.
Find the Right Treatment Program
What works for one individual may do nothing for another addict. Never choose a program based on the assumption that all facilities are alike. Take into account your unique needs, your personality, and your lifestyle when determining which treatment will be of most benefit. For some, art therapy helps them overcome the issues that drive addiction. Others discover equine therapy is better suited for their lifestyle and interests. If one program doesn’t appear to be working, don’t hesitate to try another. With time, the right facility or program will be found.
Don’t let addiction ruin your life. By accepting there is an issue and seeking help, any man or woman will find they can have the life they dream of, one free of the substance of choice. The key is to not give up until the right treatment is found, whether it be an outpatient program that meets once a week or an inpatient facility that requires a minimum of a 30-day stay. You won’t regret the search when you see the amazing life you can lead, one that you truly deserve for your hard work and effort.
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