When we were growing up, our parents warned us to say no to drugs. Many people follow this advice, but many also choose to experiment with different substances. Before they know it, some are deep into a habit, unable to break out of the vicious cycle known as drug addiction.
The late chef and writer Anthony Bourdain was candid about the drug use that played a large role in his adult life. After consuming potentially life-ruining substances such as cocaine and heroin, Bourdain considered himself lucky to kick the habit in the 1980s. But he said there were others who “did not get that far.”
If you find yourself in the deep hole that is drug addiction, you need to find an effective rehabilitation process to help you defeat your demons and start a clean and sober life. Consider completely kicking the habit, as strenuous and challenging as that may be.
Sadly, your habit may affect more than just you. If your habit has hurt your loved ones and the people you care about, addiction rehabilitation is the next step. But before doing so, you must ask yourself a question: Am I ready to willingly enter a center for dependency, addiction, and rehabilitation?
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Steps of the Treatment Process
Overcoming an alcohol or drug addiction is not an easy process, but with the right help and support, you may begin building a sober life. The process typically involves the following steps:
During this process, a client or a loved one contacts a rehabilitation center to enroll in one of the programs offered by the facility. Many facilities have a straightforward process that just requires a phone call to start.
Some clients may feel hesitant or afraid to start this process. But since they’ve acknowledged their problems and are taking the necessary measures to solve them, they’re already made major accomplishments.
The intake process occurs when clients travel to facilities to finish the administrative procedure for admittance.
Once the facilities accept clients, staff members and the therapists will make sure that the clients are not carrying any forbidden substances. This is vital because it helps ensure that the treatment will be as effective as possible.
When clients enter the assessment stage of the treatment process, staff members will conduct a thorough screening to determine treatment. Staff members will ask you which substances you have been using, how long you have been addicted to them, and if your addiction has caused further damage and mental disorders.
During this time, staff members may also conduct necessary tests and laboratory procedures to provide baseline data. They will monitor your progress during the course of treatment and compare it to the baseline data to identify whether there have been any improvements. Doctors or nurses will also ask questions to gather other relevant information, such as previous medical conditions and family histories, that may affect your treatment.
Some clients may feel uneasy during this stage, so it is important for the health team to explain the importance of every step. The more clients understand the effects and importance of treatment, the more they may accept such treatment. The process helps staff members and therapists develop rehabilitation treatments that are tailor-made for each individual.
Your rehabilitation process could either be smooth sailing venture or a long, winding road, but much will be up to you. The success of your rehab is not solely dependent on your treatment. There are many factors that could affect your rehab. There are some ways to make it less taxing:
One simple adage to keep in mind while going through rehabilitation is, “honesty is the best policy.” As former drug or alcohol user in the process of recovery, you might be experiencing feelings of shame, guilt, and self-loathing. As you face these emotions, you may want to lie and withhold sensitive information about yourself and your past.
Doing such things can hamper the progress of your recovery from the beginning. Your entire team of therapists and staff members are working to lend a helping hand. They’ll be with you every step of the process.
From your end, you must do your part and be completely honest about the struggles you are battling, no matter how difficult it is to talk about them. This is a part of your life and you shouldn’t be ashamed of it. Instead, your past can be serve as a reminder of the battles you have faced.
Honesty is related to trust. It’s important to trust your team and lower your inhibitions about treatment. The medical and therapeutic experts who are treating you are your allies, not your enemies. They have been trained to do their jobs and they know what they are doing.
Trust the entire process, as well as the people. They want to help you through your problems. With your cooperation, they want to help you become a clean and thoroughly rehabilitated member of society, ready to make a fresh start in life.
Take The First Step Towards Recovery
Talk to an Intake Coordinator
Abusing drugs exposes the body to harmful chemicals. After such abuse, it is useful to begin the detoxification (detox) process. This may be the most physically demanding step of them all.
Professional medical staff will guide you through the withdrawal process to ensure that it is as comfortable and as safe as possible. In some cases, clients receive medication, but staff members determine what their clients need on a case-by-case basis. Completing the detoxification process in rehab facilities is a safer and more comfortable way to detox your body than doing it on your own.
Detox is an important step toward sobriety. Your detox experience may not be an easy process because of withdrawal symptoms, but experienced professionals can make it better. Here are some things that can help make your detox successful:
You are going through detox because you want to live a drug-free life. Understanding the process will help you identify your symptoms and become more open to the treatment program.
Communicate to your health care providers about any symptoms that you are experiencing during the detox process. Such communication can help your health care team identify and alleviate your symptoms.
Cooperating with treatment procedures and trusting your providers will go a long way in the success of your program. If you are hesitant about some of the steps during the treatment, you can always ask for more information to determine what works for you.
Before starting the crucial phase of rehabilitation, it’s important to develop a deep understanding of what you are going to do. While you may have flushed drugs from your system during the detoxification phase, the next steps may also be challenging.
The process of rehabilitation aims to get to the root of your problems to discover what led you to the path of addiction. Rehabilitation includes healing your emotional pain and suffering. This is pain that you may have tried to mask through substance dependency, whether it was by using alcohol, cocaine, pain pills, or other substances.
If you are undergoing inpatient care, you are receiving around-the-clock care and supervision from professionals while you are living in a treatment center. Your substance abuse may have been so destructive that others may have intervened and helped you enter a facility.
One of the main goals of inpatient care is to ensure that clients receive needed information and learn habits and skills that can help free them from the grasp of addiction for the rest of their lives. Inpatient care may include:
- Art therapy
- Trauma resolution
- Individual therapy
- Family and friends therapy
- Equine therapy
- Peer group programs
- Yoga and meditation therapy
- Cognitive behavioral therapy
- Prayer meetings for those religious practitioners
- Music therapy
If you have admitted your problems and sought help for them, you have made considerable progress toward becoming clean and sober. In order to attain success in terms of your rehabilitation, you will need to keep a few things in mind and put them into practice.
If you are recovering from drug or alcohol addiction, you might be struggling with emotional pain. You may have deep wounds that are still healing, and some that even cut so deep that they leave scars that may remain for the rest of your life.
People make mistakes and sometimes dwell on pain and regrets. The fact that you started recovery means that you have taken the necessary steps to overcome your addiction. You should not feel shame about your past or believe that you will not be accepted by society because of it.
Yes, there may be people who will distance themselves from you, who will judge you. But, in the same manner, there will be people who truly love and care for you, who will stick by you during trying times. Be thankful for them and use them as motivation to not fall back into your past habits.
Letting Yourself Feel
There is no easy route in this existence. If there was, life itself would be a dull, mundane experience. Just like good food, there must be a balance between sweet, sour, bitter, and savory tastes. This is what makes any dish appetizing and flavorful.
When you are faced with a difficult situation, you can embrace it and allow yourself to soak in everything. Life is about ups, downs, and sudden turns. Do not let these feelings get the best of you, as they are just fleeting moments that will eventually pass.
In the past, you may have tried to mask such feelings by using substances and becoming dependent on them. But now, it is important for you to own and feel all your emotions.
Planning Your Life After Treatment
The first few weeks and months of sobriety may be difficult. You may think that the rehabilitation process ends once you step outside the facility doors, but like other treatments, you must make aftercare arrangements and start rebuilding your life and regaining your self-esteem. You could practice preventive maintenance to usher in your new life as a recovering individual.
Effective treatments and aftercare programs use gradual measures to assist people. Instead of resuming your regular life immediately after treatment, consider easing yourself into your new life on a step-by-step basis.
Top-quality facilities have personnel who can guide you through your release from a treatment center and your re-entry into the outside world. The personnel may give you further advice and guidance to ensure that you are fully ready to begin your new life.
Upon your release, you may encounter more forms of aftercare. In fact, aftercare may be an ongoing process that you practice for the rest of your life. Aftercare helps reduce the possibility of relapse, a lapse in sobriety that may cause addiction and require you to begin the rehabilitation process again.
Some people participate in ongoing treatment programs during aftercare, such as 12-step groups and other meetings with people who have similar experiences. Participating in 12-step program may help recovering individuals feel more comfortable, since they are with people who are less likely to judge them. Such programs may make the transition into ordinary life smoother.
While it is not mandatory, rehab clients are encouraged to help others who are going through similar situations. Many facilities offer alumni participation programs that may include 12-step meetings, gatherings, and seminars that provide ongoing education to help those who are on the road to recovery.
Giving back to the community may be another healthy way for you to keep sober. It may give you a sense of fulfillment and reinforce the idea that sobriety should rule your life, not the substances that once harmed it.
Ready to Start the Treatment Process?
Once you have acknowledged that you have a problem, it will be easier to seek help and start the process. Achieving recovery for addiction may be a steep climb, but it is possible. If you are ready to begin your treatment and start a new life, do not hesitate to reach out to medical professionals and loved ones.
Readiness to start your battle against drug addiction starts with the acceptance that you have a problem and need help. The journey will not be easy, but it is definitely worth it. You are not alone in this battle. Your support system and health professionals can guide you and help you succeed.
Sunshine Behavioral Health strives to help people who are facing substance abuse, addiction, mental health disorders, or a combination of these conditions. It does this by providing compassionate care and evidence-based content that addresses health, treatment, and recovery.
Licensed medical professionals review material we publish on our site. The material is not a substitute for qualified medical diagnoses, treatment, or advice. It should not be used to replace the suggestions of your personal physician or other health care professionals.
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