Drug addiction is a chronic disease that changes some structures in the brain through ongoing abuse of certain chemicals, like alcohol or opioids, due to compulsive behaviors around substances. Addiction treatment focuses on evidence-based practices to overcome these behaviors so the individual struggling with addiction can get physically, mentally, and emotionally healthy.
There are three basic steps to take when overcoming addiction:
While these three parts of treatment create a solid foundation for long-term recovery, the National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA) states in their Principles of Drug Addiction Treatment that no single approach to any of these steps will work for everyone. Each individual has different needs, and this is especially true when it comes to approaches to therapy in a rehabilitation program.
To get the best rehab for you or a loved one, you should understand how clinicians diagnose addiction, different levels of treatment and what they provide, and what sorts of questions you can ask of treatment programs before you sign up.
If you have concerns about how you take drugs or drink alcohol, you should visit a physician for a diagnosis. The Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, Fifth Edition (DSM-5) has 11 updated criteria that clinicians use to diagnose substance use disorders.
The American Society of Addiction Medicine (ASAM) lists different levels of care on their continuum. The continuum offers different approaches to social, psychological, and medical care depending on what your needs are when you seek rehabilitation.
general outpatient treatment, attending group or individual therapy for nine hours a week or less
intensive outpatient treatment, with more than nine hours per week of therapy, or partial hospitalization, with short-term physical stabilization and eventually stepping down to outpatient rehabilitation
residential or inpatient treatment programs, which are important for people who are not able to avoid substances while living at home or whose home lives are too unstable to be safe
inpatient treatment that also provides intensive medical management to keep the person physically stable
There are other factors that may impact the treatment path you follow:
When you visit a physician for a diagnosis, they will consider your demographic factors, current financial and social support, and what level of care you need based on the severity of your addiction. Once you have this diagnosis, there are other things you should consider when looking for the best treatment program for you.
You may receive a specific recommendation, or list of recommendations, from your physician after you have been assessed for substance abuse. This is a great starting point and should reflect your specific physical and behavioral needs. Here are some questions you can ask to find the best rehab for you:
If you are not the person seeking treatment, you can still ask these questions of a rehab program to understand how they may work for your loved one. You can then present these options to your loved one in a safe, calm environment when the person is sober and able to listen.
When searching for treatment, it can also be important to find resources that are closest to you geographically, financially within reach, and that align with your needs and beliefs. Here are some resources to find treatment options:
We know that quitting is never easy, but together there is always hope. Call 844-554-9279 to speak with our knowledgeable and compassionate specialists who are standing by to answer questions, verify insurance, and help you navigate the process of finding a treatment program that’s right for you or your loved one. So, call us or contact us online today.
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(January 2018). National Institute on Drug Abuse. from https://www.drugabuse.gov/publications/drugfacts/treatment-approaches-drug-addiction
(January 2018). National Institute on Drug Abuse. from https://www.drugabuse.gov/publications/principles-drug-addiction-treatment-research-based-guide-third-edition/principles-effective-treatment
(March 27, 2018). PsychCentral. from https://psychcentral.com/disorders/addictions/substance-use-disorder-symptoms/
(May 13, 2015). Continuum: The ASAM Criteria Decision Engine. from https://www.asamcontinuum.org/knowledgebase/what-are-the-asam-levels-of-care/
University of Rochester Medical Center. from https://www.urmc.rochester.edu/encyclopedia/content.aspx?contenttypeid=1&contentid=4497
(June 25, 2017). NBC News. from https://www.nbcnews.com/feature/megyn-kelly/how-find-good-drug-treatment-program-avoid-bad-ones-n776101