In 2005, about 1.1% of Americans had an alcohol use disorder and an underlying drug abuse disorder. Almost a decade later, in 2014, 22.5 million people had cases of alcohol and drug abuse that required medical attention. These people have access to top-class medical facilities that offer well-researched treatment approaches to addiction. You may find it overwhelming at first, but it is advisable to seek help to achieve sobriety and healthier life.
How Can I Know I Have an Addiction?
According to the latest edition of the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, the new term for addiction is ‘Use Disorder’. Some of the most common use disorders are Opiate use disorder and alcohol use disorder. You can note a substance use disorder if you continuously need to use the substance to maintain the high, you want to avoid the withdrawal symptoms, or you are fruitlessly trying to quit.
People experience these symptoms in varying intensity from severe to mild. The intensity will depend on your level of abuse and the number of symptoms you experience. These addiction symptoms include:
- Inability to limit your consumption
- Much time is spent to acquire and abuse the substance
- Presence of cravings to abuse
- Unsuccessful attempts to quit.
- Lagging in school, work and other responsibilities
- Persistence abuse despite awareness of underlying consequences.
- Abuse of substances in unsafe areas. For example, when taking care of a baby or drinking and driving.
- It would be best if you had more of the substance to achieve the high.
- You abandon your former hobbies and interests.
What Is the First Step Towards Recovery?
The first and most important step is getting help. To get help, you need to accept you need it and consult with someone. We advise that you start with a loved one because family is essential in getting a quick and effective recovery.
You can then proceed to consult with a medical professional such as a mental health professional or a doctor. Do not shy from what the doctors will think because they are trained to offer a physical exam and to guide you through the next steps to full recovery without judging you. The risks or relapse increase significantly when you try out alone.
Do I Need to See a Doctor or a Mental Health Professional?
Yes, you need their help. They are trained to handle each case uniquely and uphold confidentiality to help you achieve individual recovery goals. Consumption of alcohol and other substances puts your health at significant risk.
The medical professionals will use their knowledge and experience to conduct various tests on your body, including a physical exam. It is vital that you provide all the necessary details they ask for and anything you think could be helpful. The quality of your care depends on how well you trust and open up to the medical professionals.
Get Help for a Loved One With an Addiction
Acceptance and willingness to get help are one of the most important factors you need to look at. For you to get medical help, you have to try and convince your loved ones to accept they need help. However, this is a touchy subject, and if you approach it the wrong way, you could drive a wedge between you and your loved one.
You should consult a medical professional on how to approach it and plan an intervention. Family therapy and self-help groups are other methods you can use to initiate help for your loved one.
What Should I Consider in an Excellent Treatment Program?
You have multiple options when it comes to substance use disorder treatment programs. The characteristics of an ideal program include:
- It offers behavioral therapy and counseling
- Medication treatment if needed
- Educative sessions on healthy habits and how to cope with withdrawal.
- Detox support
- Covers mental health
- Availability of follow up programs and services
What Will Happen Once I Decide to Seek Treatment?
There are three significant steps involved in treatment and recovery. They include:
Detox is the process of removing toxins, (alcohol and substances in this case), from your body. The symptoms are most intense during this stage, and the intensity varies with the substance. Medical professionals often use medication or have medication on stand-by to help minimize the severity of the withdrawal symptoms.
The treatment stage has two primary programs which are the Inpatient and Outpatient programs. Medical professionals will offer various treatments such as medication, physical and mental health treatment, and counseling. Some people drop out of this stage due to the stigma associated with the use of disorder.
In some institutions, support is sometimes part of an outpatient program. The goal of support is to prevent relapse among those who are recovering and have recovered from substance use disorder. Examples of support programs include family therapy and group support.
Should I Choose Inpatient or Outpatient Treatment?
Inpatient and outpatient programs are available in most institutions. Your ion selection or medical advice on either of these two treatment programs depends on:
- Insurance cover
- Institution resources
- Type of use disorder
- The intensity of use disorder
1. Inpatient Treatment
The inpatient treatment program mainly treats severe addiction cases. A top-level inpatient program will provide 24/7 housing, therapy, and medical care for patients suffering from various substance use disorders. There are multiple forms of inpatient treatment. They are:
A short term detox
This involves providing help and a safe environment for a use disorder patient to remove the substances from his or her system. A safe environment ensures, but the patient does not relapse, and medication will be used to ease the withdrawal symptoms.
Long-term treatment is prescribed for those who need long-term medical attention. An example is those who first mental health issues and may reside within the facility for four months or even a year. Long-term treatment may also be prescribed where a patient is a danger to himself or others.
Recovery programs focus on getting you back on track. They ensure that your body is back to its normal functioning, both physically and mentally. Examples could include education sessions counseling or even family or group therapy.
2. Outpatient Treatment
Outpatient treatment programs are ones where the patient resides at home and visits the treatment facility regularly to stop; it could be twice a week or more. The duration depends on the severity of your use disorder and the prescription of medical professionals.
Outpatient programs offer treatment options like psycho-educational classes, individual and group therapy. In most cases, patients advance from inpatient programs to outpatient treatment. However, for less severe cases, some people will start in outpatient treatment programs and may undergo medical detox.
What Types of Therapy Have Been Proven to Work?
Behavior intervention and therapy have proven to be an effective form of use disorder treatment. You will come across the following therapies:
1. Cognitive Behavioral Therapy
This is one of the most administered forms of therapy. It helps you evaluate your thought patterns distinguish between the positive and the negative ones and learn how to cope with and overcome the negative thoughts that lead to use disorder. A popular example of this therapy is Rational emotive behaviour therapy REBT).
2. Group Counseling
This form of counselling helps patients of a peer group or facing similar challenges to overcome them. They provide both advice, motivation, support and companionship to help battle use disorders.
3. Family Therapy
This helps members of a family to cope or even provide support for a loved one experiencing use disorder.
4. Motivational Interviewing
This is a form of assessment used by medical professionals such as mental health professionals and doctors to access your level of motivation towards recovery and abstinence from substance abuse. It provides reassurance to the patient that abstinence is a better option.
Medication is used to help in use disorder recovery. However, it is not a primary form of treatment. Medications are used to help ease the intensity of the withdrawal symptoms. Medical professionals mainly prescribe medication for alcohol and opiate use disorders.
For example, methadone and buprenorphine are prescribed to help reduce cravings for opiates. Disulfiram, on the other hand, helps to minimize physical reactions such as nausea among alcohol dependents.
What Lifestyle Changes Can I Make to Prevent Relapse?
You will experience temptations immediately when you get off treatment.
The following are some lifestyle tips you can adapt to prevent relapse:
- Avoid places people and activities that trigger the use of substances.
- Please communicate with your friends and relatives and let them know you are serious about recovery and ask for their support.
- Find local support groups within your community where you can engage in activities therapy counseling and talks to help you cope with life-after use disorder.
- Maintain a healthy lifestyle which includes exercise, a healthy diet, enough sleep and proper relaxation. A healthy lifestyle will uplift your mood, and increase your energy which will help you abstain.
Drug and Alcohol Treatment. All Levels of Care in Los Angeles, California
In Los Angeles, you can get treatment from a top-class facility like AmHealth Behavioral. AmHealth Behavioral offers all kinds of treatment through its various treatment facilities which are located in southern California. They also have trained and experienced medical professionals to guide you through treatment and recovery.
The treatment facilities include: Novo Detox (residential detox and rehab), 310 recovery (inpatient and outpatient rehab), overland IPO center and the Bluff Sober Living.
All levels and facilities of alcohol and substance use disorder treatment are available at the facility. They include:
- Novo Detox (residential detox and rehab). This facility of AmHealth Behavioral is a luxury residential detox and rehab facility. The facility features inpatient, outpatient, and aftercare treatment programs. We also offer diet, exercise, and therapy treatments to ensure an all-round recovery. This facility focuses on intensive recovery.
- 310 recovery (inpatient and outpatient rehab). Our 310 recovery facility focuses on inpatient and outpatient treatment programs. We accommodate patients with cases ranging from severe to mild. Our medical professionals also offer 24/7 one on one care, individual and group therapy.
- Overland IOP Center is a facility under AmHealth Behavioral group that offers Intensive Outpatient Programs. You will be able to participate in daily obligations and still receive treatment.
- The Bluff Sober Living. This is a facility where we help our patients ease back into their daily lives and community. We offer a safe environment to achieve this and provide amenities like laundry detergent and food.
Alcohol and substance disorder affects many people across the world. Government organizations and individuals have invested resources and time in researching various treatment options for alcohol use and substance disorder. Treatment is readily available, and the first step, which is acceptance overuse disorder begins with you.
Medical professionals will offer treatment in the following procedure:
- Detox which may include the use of medication
- Inpatient treatment provides a safe place to recover.
- Outpatient treatment which Focuses on therapy and counseling.
- Support treatment which includes follow-up treatments and support to help prevent relapse.