When the person has a chemical dependency he puts his life at risk and damages him and his family, the treatment to stop using drugs should be initiated. To stop using the drug and get treatment is the essential thing is that the person wants. During treatment, willpower is the most important ingredient for the health team and family members to help to stop the addiction.
It may be indicated to look for treatment in a specialized clinic, which guarantees that during this period there is no contact with any drug, except for the drugs indicated for treatment. The hospitalization can be partial, that is to say only during the day, or full. So, the person can only leave when he is completely recovered.
The specific treatment is recommended for drug abusers that cause psychological or physical dependence which includes:
Hospitalization to treat drug addiction can happen voluntarily when the person wants to start treatment. It can be involuntary when family members make a request to the doctor to hospitalize the person against their will. This happens especially when there is a high risk to her/his life and that of the people around the addict, however, involuntary hospitalizations have been less and less recommended and used.
The rehabilitation centers specializing in the treatment of substance addiction can still help in the treatment of alcohol abuse, but in this case, there are also other institutions aimed at those who consume alcoholic beverages and even support groups in the community, known as Alcoholics Anonymous, for example.
How is the treatment process?
During the treatment at the specialized clinic, the team of professionals works together to find the best combination of treatments for each case. Therefore, the process can change from one person to another. However, some of the most widely used forms of treatment procedures include:
1. Drug Remedies
The medicine to treat drug addiction should be used only with supervision, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. This helps so that the person can carry out the treatment correctly and reduce withdrawal symptoms.
Initially, to combat “craving”, which is the imminent desire to use the drug, anxiolytic and antidepressant drugs, for example, can be used.
The prescribed medicine against the use of drugs vary according to the drug that is causing the addiction:
- Marijuana: Fluoxetine and Buspirone, which try to reduce withdrawal symptoms;
- Cocaine: Topiramate and Modafinil, for example, although there are several drugs that can be used;
- Crack: Risperidone, Topiramate or Modafinil, which try to alleviate withdrawal symptoms;
- Heroin: Methadone and Naloxone, which act on the brain by altering the reward and pleasure system.
In addition to these, it is common for other antibiotic and antiviral drugs to be indicated to combat health problems that the user may have, such as tuberculosis, pneumonia, HIV or syphilis, for example.
2. Therapy with a psychologist or psychiatrist
Although family support and help are very important and a fundamental part of treatment against drug addiction. Also, monitoring by a psychologist or psychiatrist is also essential to help stop using it. Because it offers useful tools for the person to avoid contact and consumption of drugs, in addition to helping the family, who learn how to live together and help the person to continue the treatment.
In addition, when the user stops using drugs, he goes through a period of abstinence in which he faces strong feelings of anxiety and various emotional disorders. Therefore, it is important to ensure that there is psychological monitoring. So, that the person can manage their emotions well, without having to resort to drugs.
3. Changing behaviors
Another important factor in combating drug addiction is behavior change. As often the person’s social reality makes them want to consume the drug, such as meeting with friends who use drugs and going to places where they used drugs. To change their lifestyle and to decrease the risk of relapse a person needs to be instructed.
In addition, contact with even milder drugs and alcoholic beverages should be avoided, as they also increase the risk of relapse.
4. Drug use in controlled locations
Not always seen with good eyes, another form of treatment is the consumption of the drug in a specialized place. To avoid the consumption that leads to other diseases necessary procedures are provided in these treatment centers.
Where to find free drug treatment?
Limited places are available for drug treatment in the country. A drug addict who wants to admit should first seek guidance for treatment from their family doctor. The family doctor will recommend institutions that can help with treatment.
There are many government drug treatment and rehabilitation centers that assist in the treatment of drugs. These centers are open every day throughout the day. The team of general practitioners, psychiatrists, psychologists, nurses and social workers centers attend these centers.
The monitoring of drug abusers and dependents in these centers is daily and allows the individual to feel able to work and play again. Thus strengthening their mental and psychological health.
One of the many advantages of the drug treatment centers is to replace the patient’s need for hospitalization, integrating it into the treatment itself. Thus making him responsible for going daily to the treatment center in his municipality.
How long does recovery take from drug addiction?
It is necessary to monitor the individual for at least 6 months, and it may take from 1 to 5 years to monitor the person, depending on adherence to the individual treatment plan.
In the first 6 months, the treatment team tries to leave the person completely free of drugs. But they always working on several aspects to prevent a relapse, and so that the person can rebuild his life. In the following months, the follow-up aims to strengthen new attitudes and empowerment.
After this period, the person may have a relapse. But the important thing is to persevere and move forward with the drug treatment. Sometimes, the person will still need a follow-up, having 2 or 3 consultations per year, for a long period.