How to Treat Drug Addiction

Drug addiction will require immediate treatment once detected. There are a wide range of treatments available that can help addicts get rid of their dangerous drug habit. Individual drug problems can vary significantly.

Different people who are addicted to different drugs may need to be treated differently. There is a variety of scientifically based approaches to drug addiction treatment that includes behavioral therapy such as counseling or psychotherapy, the use of medications or their combination.

Many drug addicts believe that they can stop using drugs on their own, and most try to stop without treatment. However, most of their attempts result in failure. Research has shown that long-term drug use can develop changes in brain function that stays on even long after the individual stops using drugs.

These same changes in brain function may urge addicts to continue using drugs despite adverse consequences, making it very difficult to stop. Understanding the important biological component of drug addiction may help explain why a drug user may find it very difficult to achieve and maintain abstinence without getting the necessary treatment.

Other factors such as psychological stress from work or family problems, social influence, or the environment can interact with the biological factors to hinder any success at sustained abstinence and make relapse even more likely. But this does not mean that total abstinence cannot be successfully achieved.

It can be done through the combination of a variety of treatments. Research studies have shown that even the most severely addiction cases can participate actively in such treatments. Active participation of the drug user is essential for such treatments to be successful.

Treatment for drug addiction

One of the available treaments used is behavioral therapy. Its main aim is to offer drug users with ways of trying to cope up with their drug cravings. Supportive Counselling can help in teaching habitual users effective ways on how to avoid drugs and prevent or deal with a relapse when it occurs.

Case management and referral to other medical, psychological, and social services are also crucial elements in the effective and successful treatment of drug addiction. Treatment medications such as methadone, LAAM, and naltrexone, are made available to help individuals addicted to opiates cope up with some of the withdrawal symptoms associated with trying to let go of the addiction.

Medical detoxification can also be used to help an individual break away from his drug addicition. It is a process where drug users are systematically taken off the addicting substance in an inpatient or outpatient setting, usually under the care of a physician. Detoxification is designed to treat the acute physiological effects of stopping drug use. It is not designed to address the psychological, social, and behavioral problems associated with an individual’s drug addiction.

Medications are available for detoxification from different addicting sunstances such as opiates, benzodiazepines, alcohol, barbiturates, and other sedatives. In some cases, detoxification may be a medical necessity since certain untreated withdrawal symptoms can be medically dangerous or even fatal.

The best programs provide a combination of therapies and other services such as medication treatment in order to meet the needs of the individual patient. The therapy will aim to take care of the behavioral component of the addiction while medication treatment such as detoxification and other services will try to take care of the physiological aspect of the substance addiction.

An individual aproach may be undertaken for each case of substance addiction since treatment programs may be shaped by such issues as age, race, culture, gender, pregnancy, parenting,as well as the extent of physical and sexual abuse.


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