Finding the Treatment that Works for Substance Abuse Recovery
In 2007, about 23 million Americans ages 12 and older required substance abuse treatment, according to the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS). That staggering number is only likely to increase as the population grows.
If you are one of the millions who are struggling with substance abuse, no time is better than September’s National Alcohol and Drug Addiction Recovery Month to find a treatment method that will put you on the path to sobriety.
The theme of this year’s 20th annual Recovery Month is “Join the Voices for Recovery: Together We Learn, Together We Heal.” Through community and Internet resources, DHHS’ Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration seeks to educate people about substance abuse and help those who are struggling with substance abuse get the help they need.
Recovery Month also aims to celebrate people in recovery, as well as the family members, friends and substance abuse treatment providers that have been integral in the recovery process.
“Educating the public reduces the stigma associated with addiction and treatment,” states the website for Recovery Month. “Accurate knowledge of the disease helps people to understand the importance of supporting treatment programs, those who work within the treatment field and those in need of treatment.”
Resources for Recovery
No one form of substance abuse treatment will work for everyone. Some people will be able to successfully achieve sobriety on their own. Others will need support groups, medication or residential treatment programs to get them where they want to be.
Finding the treatment that works best for you will require some research about the types of treatment available. Here are just some of your options:
With the support of other people who are struggling through the same substance abuse issues as you, you can learn from the experiences of others, gain valuable tips and share personal experiences that you may not feel comfortable sharing with your family or friends. Support groups may be organized by people seeking support, or by professionals at hospitals and substance abuse treatment centers.
Residential Treatment Centers
Residential treatment centers specializing in substance abuse treatment are available throughout the country and in a variety of environments. Centers provide either short-term (3 to 6 weeks) or long-term (6 to 12 months, or longer) stays, plus continuing care. Residential treatment centers provide patients with individual therapy, group therapy, experiential therapy and other treatment modalities to increase the likelihood of achieving long-term recovery.
Outpatient treatment usually consists of regular individual, group or family counseling sessions provided by a mental health professional or clinic. Outpatient treatment provides a forum for patients to discuss issues and receive support while coping with their day-to-day work, school and life stressors. Outpatient treatment can include medications to help suppress cravings.
The newest form of substance abuse treatment is provided online through such services as eGetGoing. Online support allows people anonymity and the convenience of getting support in their own homes. Through eGetGoing, an accredited online recovery program, online support groups are led by certified counselors.
Benefits of Seeking Treatment
If you have a drug or alcohol addiction, it is tempting to believe that it will just go away on its own, or that you will be able to become sober without assistance. Many people resist the idea of treatment because they think there is a stigma attached to it. But professional treatment gives you your best chance for achieving long-term sobriety.
A successful treatment experience can help you:
- Improve your overall health
- Receive detoxification services
- Explore your spirituality
- Tailor an individualized treatment plan to your specific needs
- Treat any co-occurring disorders, such as depression or chronic pain
- Create a relapse prevention plan
- Empower you to achieve what you thought you could not
If you are struggling with drug or alcohol abuse, take the time during Recovery Month to find the treatment program that is best suited to address your unique needs.