The Benefits Of Drug Treatment
One of the reasons why it’s hard to stay sober today is because the news about drug use is everywhere. Particularly in recent months, news articles and television programs are highlighting heroin, which is becoming one of the most abused drugs in America. And if it’s not an addiction to heroin, then there’s a story about someone with an addiction to painkillers.
For instance, a 12-step community can be a shield against the temptation of return to friends who use marijuana or heroin or alcohol. Having the support of a drug counselor, family, friends, therapist, doctor, and others who are in recovery can make all the difference in the world.
In addition to having a support network, there are forms of therapy that can help explore the unhealthy thoughts that might contribute to relapse or making other unhealthy choices.
One of the services sometimes provided at sober living homes is motivational interviewing. It’s a form of therapy that seeks to evoke an intrinsic desire to change. It does this by exploring the ambivalence to changing behavior, given the pros and cons of using drugs. Exploring and resolving this ambivalence is the goal of this type of therapy.
It does not use any coercive methods to change behavior or pressure that might induce feelings of guilt or shame. It simply and safely explores all the pros (such as healthier living and better relationships) and the cons (won’t have a coping mechanism to manage stress and missing the highs that come with getting drunk) to getting sober.
Social and Environmental Factors in Recovery
In fact, a recent research study done in 2011 found that drug treatment is an effective means for achieving sobriety when certain factors were in place. The study found that for 300 individuals a residential drug treatment facility was an effective option for those in need of alcohol-free and drug-free housing.
When individuals were involved in 12-step programs, had a strong network of support and were living in a drug free environment, they tended to reach sobriety with few or no relapses. The study reaffirmed the importance of social and environmental factors in recovery.
In the lives of participants of the study, improvements were seen in the areas of alcohol and drug use, number of arrests, psychiatric symptoms and employment.
It was clear from the study that there are certain factors that predict better recovery outcomes, such as high involvement in 12-step meetings, little alcohol and drug use among peers, and a low severity level for any presenting mental illnesses.
The study also found those who were referred to drug treatment from the criminal justice system experienced similar outcomes when these same factors were present. However, they had a harder time finding and keeping work and had higher re-arrest rates.
Find Effective Help
Of course, drug treatment is effective for almost any kind of addiction. There are some that focus on certain types, such as alcohol only. And there are others that focus on illicit drugs, from cocaine to marijuana to heroin.
Others focus on process or behavioral addictions only such as gambling or sexual addictions. Drug treatment is effective for an individual in the recovery process no matter their age.
It’s not only those who are in their 40’s and 50’s who can achieve sobriety, but also those in their late teens and early 20’s.
In the case of marijuana, research indicates that the earlier a person begins to use the drug, the more likely he or she will become dependent on it. Also, dependency will develop within two years for 17% of those who began smoking marijuana at ages 14 or 15.
Yet, regardless of your addiction, drug treatment in addition to other supportive factors can help create sobriety in your life. In fact, with the right supports in your life, you can not only reach sobriety, you can stay that way.
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