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What Is Drug Addiction?

Drug dependence is an unrelenting illness that presents in obsessive, or out of control drive to access the drug at any cost even when one is aware of the danger and long lasting harm effects on their brain. The harmful habits of people suffering from drug addiction come as a result of these changes inside the brain. It's also easy to relapse back into drug addiction. Relapse is returning to a habit of drug use after a serious attempt to stop using.


The way to drug dependence starts with the wilful act of using drugs. However, as time passes, an individual's ability to decide not to use drugs weakens. The need to obtain and consume the drug becomes a driving force. The major cause of this it how long term drug exposure alters brain activity. Dependency affects regions of the brain that are involved in learning and memory; motivation and reward; and command over behaviour.

Drug dependency is an illness that alters both brain functions and actions.


Is Drug Addiction Treatable?

It can, however it is hard. It is not possible for people to overcome drug addiction simply by abstaining from drug use for some days, because drug addiction is chronic. For most patients, long term often repeated care is needed to help them stop using and continue on to get their lives back.


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The addicts must be assisted to achieve certain things through the treatment for addiction, and they include

  • Stopping to require using the drug
  • Remaining clean
  • Resuming their responsibilities at home, workplace and community

Standards Of Effective Treatment

According to scientific research conducted since the mid-1970s, the essential principles listed below should be the foundation of all successful treatment programmes

  • Addiction is a complicated, chronic disease that affects the brain and behaviour, but it is treatable.
  • No exclusive treatment is correct for everybody.
  • Treatment should be made available to people whenever they need it.
  • The entire needs of the patient, not only drug use issues, should be delivered by a good treatment plan.
  • It is crucial to remain in treatment for a long enough amount of time.
  • The prevalently applied types of treatment include counselling and some other therapies that centre on behaviours.
  • Medications are regularly an imperative component of treatment, particularly when consolidated with behavioural therapies.
  • In order to accommodate the needs of the patient, treatment methods must be appraised with changes in the patient's needs.
  • Treatment ought to address other conceivable mental problems.
  • Medically assisted detoxification is just the very first step of the treatment.
  • The treatment does not rely on the volition of the patient to yield positive fruits.
  • Substance use during treatment should be observed constantly.
  • The treatment programs must ensure that patients are tested for tuberculosis, hepatitis B and C, HIV/AIDS, and other infectious ailments, while they should also be informed about the best way to avoid contacting those.

What Steps Are Involved In Treating Addiction?

Different steps are involved in effective treatments

  • detoxification (the process through which drug is expelled from the body)
  • Psychological therapist
  • medication for addictions to opioids, tobacco, or alcohol
  • assessment and treatment for any co-occurring mental health concerns like anxiety and depression
  • long-term after treatment care to avoid relapse

Great results can be realised with the customised medical care plan and support services.


Depending on the level of need, mental health services should be added to the medical aspect of any treatment. Post-rehab support could involve the peer or family group therapy.


How Are Meds Utilised As A Part Of Drug Compulsion Treatment?

Meds can be utilized to oversee withdrawal manifestations, anticipate backslide and treat comorbid conditions.

  • Withdrawal During the detoxification process, medication helps suppress the physical reactions. Cleansing the body is not the same as treatment, it only the beginning of the journey. Those who stop at detox will most likely relapse into drug abuse again. According to one study of treatment centres, medications were utilised in close to 80 per cent of detoxifications (SAMHSA, 2014).
  • Relapse Prevention Medications can help manage cravings and help patients re-establish normal brain activity. Medication is available for the treatment of tobacco (nicotine), alcohol and opioid (prescription pain relievers and heroin) dependency. Drugs that can counter the effects of enhancing (uppers) like (cocaine, crystal meth) and cannabis (marijuana) are being developed by scientists. A person who uses more than one substance, which is really typical, require treatment for every substance he/she uses.

How Are Behavioural Therapies Used To Treat Drug Addiction?

Patients are assisted by behavioural therapies to

  • change their character and disposition towards the use of drugs
  • Adopt healthier psychosocial competency
  • Keep going with other forms of treatment, like medication and support groups

The settings upon which patents can access their treatments and the approaches used varies.

Outpatient behavioural treatment comprises a big range of programmes for patients who go to a behavioural health counsellor regularly. The majority of the programmes incorporate group or one-to-one substance counselling or both these forms.


These projects normally offer types of behavioural treatment, for example,

  • cognitive-behavioural therapy, that assists a patient to identify, steer clear of, and deal with the circumstances in which he/she is most probable to resort to substances
  • multidimensional family therapy - designed for teenagers suffering drug addiction and their relatives - which considers several factors that contribute to their drug addiction, with the intention of affecting the functioning of the family in a positive manner
  • motivational interviewing, which gets most of the addicts disposed to work on their behaviour and commence treatment
  • contingency management (motivational incentives), which makes use of positive reinforcement to motivate refraining from substances

Treatment is at times strenuous initially, where a patient attends many outpatient sessions weekly. Subsequent to finishing escalated treatment, patients move to customary outpatient treatment, which meets less frequently and for decreased hours every week to help manage their recuperation.


Patients dealing with complications caused by long time abuse of drugs may benefit greatly from inpatient also known as residential rehabilitation services. 24-hour planned and organised care system, coupled with proper medical care and safe housing are given in residential treatment facilities that are licensed. Several approaches to therapies that are mainly designed to assist the patients to achieve a life that is free of drugs and crime after treatment are applied by residential treatment facilities.


Benefits of taking an inpatient treatment programme

  • Rigidly structured programs where patients remain inpatient for 6 to 12 months are called therapeutic communities. The entire community, comprising treatment employees and patients in recovery, act as essential agents of change, affecting the patient's understanding, attitude, as well as conduct linked with substance use.
  • Residential treatment that is shorter term usually focuses on detoxification and beginning focused therapy in preparation for follow up in a community based setting.
  • Recuperation lodging gives regulated, brief-span housing for patients, regularly taking after different sorts of inpatient or residential management. People can move onto independent life through recovery housing - it assists them for example to learn financial management or job hunting, while linking them to community based support groups.

Challenges Of Re-Entry

Because drug abuse changes the way the brain functions, a lot of things can trigger drug cravings. It's basic for those in treatment, particularly those treated at an inpatient centre or jail, to figure out how to identify, ignore and adapt to triggers they are probably going to be presented to after treatment.