While there is a drug addiction, the addict changes his behavior and conduct. Drug addiction treatment and rehabilitation focuses on giving the patient his normal life back. This process is done with the help of a multi-disciplinary team of medical specialists. There are many types of treatment and rehabilitation facilities, from which specialize in specific drug addictions to other which attends a major range of drug addictions. From which specialize in younger patients to other which attends older ones. From inpatient rehab facilities to outpatient ones. From basic centers to luxury ones. These kind of treatment and rehabilitation are based in the idea that patients can leave anytime they want, because rehabilitation is truly effective when the patient wants to be there and change his habits.
The first step of the process, the intake, is when the drug addict and the specialists determine which rehab center is better. Diagnostic tests and screenings are made. Medical personal will evaluate the addiction and determine its needs, stage, severity, drug history and more. This step is very important because it will determine the success of both treatment and rehabilitation. If the drug addict feels comfortable and happy with the process, the chances of long-term health and sobriety will be major.
Detoxification treatment is a necessary step before rehabilitation. In this step, patients must clear their bodies from all the toxic substances. The detox process can vary from patient to patient due to individual´s unique metabolism, specific drug consumed, period of time consuming it and association to other addictions. The process is monitored by specialized personal due to the withdrawal symptomatology associated. These signs and symptoms include depression or/and fatigue, cramping, muscle pain, agitation, gastrointestinal and breathing problems, seizures, less concentration, hallucinations, headaches, strokes, cardiovascular problems, death. Sometimes, depending on the severity of drug addiction, minor doses of medication can be given such as Methadone, Buprenorphine, Benzodiazepines and Barbiturates.
After detox treatment, the next step is rehabilitation. In this process, patients get to know the truth behind the addiction and the underlying problems they have. This knowledge is necessary to move on with their lives, return to the normal behavior they had, stay sober and live happy the rest of their lives. Usually, in this step is when patients make goals (both short and long-term goals) to themselves and their beloved.
In individual therapy sessions, patients do some introspection to identify the problems that pushed them to drug abuse, think about new interests or hobbies that they can do for a better use of their time, learn how to deal with triggers and avoid relapse. The patient will know how he feels about drug abuse and life itself to make conduct and behavioral changes. In group therapy sessions the patients interact with each other. It is helpful because it shows patients that they are not alone in the process. Patients share their own experiences with drug addiction and recovery. Family therapy sessions are based on the fact that usually the most affected persons by the drug addiction are family members. They are a very important component of the rehabilitation process and will be a support in the recovery process.
When rehabilitation is finished, the recovery process will go on for life. For many people, this is the rule to follow. There will be times that recovery may feel easy, but other times the temptation to relapse and do drugs again will be strong. Many rehab centers offer a follow-up program to patients that return to normal life or a temporary job inside the facility before returning to their old lives. Groups like Narcotics Anonymous (NA) are present in many communities and are a good aftercare support group for dealing with recovery.
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