Any difficulty as complex and emotionally charged as addiction to drugs or alcohol is will have many varied opinions and a multitude of treatment alternatives, centers, retreats and clinics. Aside from the stigma associated with addiction, treatment centers are most often approached due to some crisis either – legal, psychological, medical or family crisis. Approaching Addiction Treatment centers from a point of crisis makes it more difficult for this crucial decision to be taken with a clear mind and time to explore the best alternatives – which would obviously benefit such an important decision.
No one treatment approach or clinic enjoys a monopoly on success, there are however certain universal criteria that are generally accepted in the field of addictions treatment. It is important to be aware that recovery from addiction is a long-term process often requiring further ongoing treatment. There is little argument in the addictions field that successful recovery benefits greatly from addictions treatment at any one of the top quality drug rehab centers. Most primary care drug rehabs offer patients a program of between 21 and 42 days.
Usually after this initial treatment, and entirely depending on patient needs, the addiction treatment consultants will suggest either a longer period in a secondary or tertiary rehab or even offer an outpatient program as an extension of the patient’s treatment process. Extended residential care and treatment of anything from 30-90 day’s is offered at many good addiction treatment centers. For any severe addiction, treatment of no less than 90 days is recommended. Of course in this day and age of managed health care, trying to fund such a treatment episode is often expensive and difficult for families to afford.
Unfortunately the alternatives are far worse. Doing nothing is an untenable position, as watching your loved one sink further into their addiction without effective treatment at one of the many quality centers can be unbearable. Yes, it can be expensive to pay for private addiction treatment at one of the top centers; however, the cost of rehab is less than the cost of not doing rehab. The world’s best and most exclusive addiction treatment centers foster the highly effective therapeutic community approach, treating addiction as a disease, teaching people how to structure their lives around the drug problem and encouraging participation in 12 Step Fellowships (such as AA – Alcoholics Anonymous and NA – Narcotics Anonymous) and seem to have a good history of longer term success with patients.
A reputable drug rehab will work with the needs of the individual, tailoring a specific treatment plan and reassessing those needs as the treatment progresses. A multi-disciplinary team of addiction treatment professionals, including trained addictions counsellors, (not just people in personal recovery that get given the label ‘counsellor’ which is an all too often and cheaper alternative with poor quality treatment outcomes for the patients) will carry out assessments in the better quality drug rehabs. From a medically supervised detoxification to a carefully devised discharge plan, there are many different angles that need to be carefully considered and the entire person’s needs holistically addressed. Often in the addiction treatment centers that don’t provide high quality care these ongoing amendments to the patient’s treatment plan are neglected.
Please contact We Do Recover to find an effective and registered rehab near you. Call us in South Africa on 082-747-REHAB (73422) or in the UK toll free on 0808-26-REHAB (73422)
Addiction treatment in a reputable and registered centre should enable the patient to obtain an understanding of their illness and the problematic effects this has on themselves and on others. This dismantling of the addicted person’s delusion’s (denial) is paramount to addiction treatment success. Without clearly showing the addicted person how they rationalise and justify their ongoing drug use, blame all and sundry for its origins and effects and do not take any responsibility for their lives is an absolutely critical part of rehab at any of the good addictions treatment centers.
This is often referred to, amongst other painful sounding analogies, as “breaking through denial”. Anyone who’s had the pleasure of getting to know and addicted person knows that “breaking through” anything is near impossible.
The skill of a trained and experienced addictions counsellor is to gently reflect to the patient the nature of their illness, why it’s been so difficult to assume responsibility until now and what they can do today to step up and take charge of their lives again. No mean feat in any circumstances.
This is the all important work that needs to be completed in an addiction treatment center and entrusting this delicate process to ‘any old’ addictions counsellor in ‘any old’ addiction treatment center is foolhardy. To achieve this task of awakening the patient through dismantling of their denial system, residential addiction treatment center should include, one-on-one (individual) counselling. Group therapy and educational lectures, including but not limited to:
- Powerlessness and loss of control
- Consequences of active addiction, including physical and mental effects
- Addiction and the family
- Relapse prevention
- Recovery Principles
- Other addictions, the possibility of cross-addiction and so forth.
Most addiction treatment centers will also have a program of written assignments to assist in the development of a quality relationship for the patient with themselves, other people and some kind of a higher power. Whilst sober social skills are important to develop, the relationship with oneself is foremost. The addiction treatment centers will generally encourage attendance of 12 Step Fellowship meetings whilst the addict is in rehab and encourage participation in these groups as a component of the discharge plan or aftercare.
Discharge planning and aftercare are crucial services provided by addiction treatment centers. At a minimum the drug rehab should offer an agreed number of after care sessions with the patient’s dedicated addictions counsellor as well as weekly process groups facilitated by an experienced addictions counsellor. Whilst the patient is able to learn about their illness and the physical, psychological and spiritual impact it’s had on their lives and the lives of their loved ones, the addictions treatment centers will offer a family program designed to provide a similar level of understanding to family members in a supportive group environment.
This allows the family to be part of the recovery process as stipulated by the addiction treatment centers. Another important feature is having organised conjoint family sessions facilitated by an addictions counsellor. The key to a successful treatment period is a feeling of safety and trust, the addict has to become willing to take risks in sharing their problems and asking for the help they need, reputable addictions treatment centers will offer this through the experience of their multi-disciplinary team, their professional intake assessment and the detailed treatment plan that they offer.
The aim of quality addictions treatment centers is to help the addicted person to recognise their illness, admit the need for help and to recognise what they can do to take responsibility for the changes necessary to live a different life.