We have all heard how addiction is terrible. However, very few of us know how addiction starts. Addictions can begin at any phase of our lives. There are even cases of teenage addictions. The main issue behind addiction is the uncontrolled usage of substances which is called abuse. Alcohol and narcotics are the most common substances. People who begin abusing them reshape their lives to accommodate these dependencies. There is also an immense stigma surrounding substance abuse, making it hard for people to ask for help.
However, if you know someone who is going through an extreme case of addiction, help them. When people submerge deeply into using alcohol or drugs, they lose their sense of self. They are too unstable to be left alone and may end up doing something dangerous. Abandoning people won’t stop the problem. Instead, establishing a system that will take care of them will. So, if you’re looking for advice to help someone recover from addiction. Here’s what you need to do:
Look At Rehab Centers
Convincing a person to go into rehab is challenging. However, it would help if you did your research. Rehab centers have professional counselors who can guide you about the recovery process. They have both personal accounts and experiences that will give you an idea of what behavior to expect. So you’re not only never caught off guard, but you know what withdrawals look like. Looking for rehab centers in your area also makes it easy to take the person for treatment right away. You don’t want to give an addict reasons to back out. You can always Google rehab centers for addicts to get the best possible match in your area. You also want to ensure the rehab center knows how to work with patients of different ages. A recovering teenage addict has different needs than a recovering adult.
Cut The Source Of Addiction
You need to find what the source of the person’s addiction is. A drug addict has different needs than an alcoholic. If you’re helping an alcoholic recover, you need to cut all sources of alcohol. Make sure their house is empty from bottles or glasses that may remind them of drinking. Meanwhile, encourage them to look for hobbies and activities that you can do together. The first few months of recovery are hard. You need to find ways to keep the person occupied.
Similarly, if you’re helping someone who is a recovering heroin addict, you will get rid of the drug. You should also lock some of the drawers to ensure they don’t sneak in heroin and hide it. You also want to get rid of any syringes, spoons, or lighters they use to enable their addiction.
Take The Person To A Doctor
You need to visit a doctor who has worked with drug addicts. Withdrawal symptoms include body aches, nausea, diarrhea, and even dizziness. Since you’re trying to wean off the addict from taking more substances, you need an alternative. A doctor can inform you about medications for addictions. They can give you holistic approaches that may work better instead of traditional medicine. The doctor may suggest you take the recovering addict to see a massage therapist or get acupuncture. They may also advise you to find exercises that are suitable for your body to withstand. You may start with light stretches and even yoga. You may even get track marks looked at. A doctor can administer antibiotics and even bandage apparent wounds.
Don’t Harbor Unrealistic Expectations
A person who is under-recovery is vulnerable. Recovery is a shaky process. They will have good days and bad days. Some days they are willing to listen, and sometimes they want nothing to do with you. Part of addiction recovery tips is to keep yourself from becoming unrealistic. You need to prepare yourself for a possible relapse. A drug addict may get their hands on drugs again, and an alcoholic may get drunk again. If you feel the situation is out of control for you, check them into rehab. If you think they may hurt themselves in rehab, get professional help for them. You may hire a rehab professional who can stay at home with you and monitor the condition. Drug addiction recoveries come with a modicum of relapse that you need to expect.
Educate Yourself More
There is much stigma around addiction. You may feel biased about addicts or not know enough about what it takes to help an addict. Educate yourself on why addiction happens and what are the most common forms of addiction. You should also find out what comes under drug addiction treatment. If professionals recommend therapies, what kind of therapies are helpful? Do you think the patient needs behavioral modification or cognitive therapy? How does therapy help with drug addicts? All of these questions should come under your research. Your end goal is to find how to overcome an addiction without shaming the addict.
Look For Peer Support Groups
There are many support groups available for addicts. These can be alcoholic anonymous meetings that help alcoholics establish steps of alcohol recovery. These meetings help addicts exchange stories about addiction and their experience with recovery. For recovering addicts, they need a safe space. The amount of empathy and understanding other recovering addicts carry is incomparable. They form one of the first bases for treatments for addicts. You may accompany the person to their meetings. You can observe how they communicate with each other and what emotion is prevalent in all addicts. Understanding is essential to help provide sufficient care. There are also numerous support groups such as one-on-one, online, and even peer support systems. Please discuss with the person what they’re most comfortable doing.
Speak With Counselors
People who are recovering will show mental health issues. Addiction can crumble mental health. So these people may struggle with forming rational and coherent thoughts. In some cases, the person may show signs and symptoms of depression and anxiety. Unless you have a professional degree, you can’t treat these ailments. Mental health illnesses are not physical wounds. You can’t bandage them and expect them to heal over time. A professional counselor knows how to work with an addict. They will ensure that the person can share their story without shame. Once they have a mutual understanding, a counselor will administer therapy. The kind of therapy will depend on their condition. Some patients may need extensive behavioral therapy, while some may need cognitive therapy.
Help Them Subside Urges
While in recovery, it is natural to feel urges. They may have an intense craving to shoot a load or drink into a stupor. It is a real test of resilience to keep a person from slipping back into old habits. You need to help them fight these urges and not hurt themselves. Help them find coping mechanisms such as singing, painting, and even meditating. You should also try helping them get into a routine with minimal free time, so their mind doesn’t stray. Sometimes a change of scenery and a haircut can make all the difference. Give them a complete makeover and help them turn a new leaf.
Helping someone recover from an addiction is not easy. Addiction tends to sink its claws deep into an addict. So there is a need for an intervention to help a person find their momentum again. You may need to research extensively to ensure you can provide help. These may include finding rehab centers, doctors, and even support groups. You also need to make sure you’re preventing any possible cases of relapse. So cut off any source of addiction from entering the house. However, in case of relapse, have an emergency plan. As long as you show compassion, you can help streamline the process.
Having completed my Bachelor’s degree in medicine and currently pursuing a house job at a well reputed hospital in California, I decided to utilize my spare time in sharing knowledge with others through my blog. Apart from my time spent in the medical field, I love to read fiction novels and go on long drives.