Drug Addiction – Treatments and Drugs

Treatments for drug addiction can include self-support groups, counseling and outpatient and inpatient treatment. The kind of detoxification program one takes depends on the degree of a person’s addiction.

Self-support groups – Self-help groups emphasize the necessity of group meetings, counseling and medications to help prevent the patient from relapsing into drug abuse. The physician or counselor may provide the patient with a support group or he can find one himself in or near his area using the library, internet, phonebook or through referrals.

Counseling – This can be done with the patient himself or with his family. The counselor, psychiatrist or psychologist will be the one heading the session and will utilize specific behavior therapies to help the patient better manage his addiction or rid himself of his drug cravings.  The mental health specialist will talk to the patient regarding certain things about his life such as his friends, family, legal problems or job. Family support is good to encourage the patient to open more to the specialist.

Treatment programs – These programs entail information and treatment times that emphasize the warding off relapse and in getting sober. These programs can entail family, group or individual involvement and are offered in many ways like inpatient, outpatient or even residential programs.

Withdrawal therapy – This therapy aims to stop your addiction as quickly but as safely as possible.  It often is done by using other more harmless drugs such as methadone as a substitute to the drug that the patient is taking in order to mitigate his withdrawal symptoms.

Withdrawal therapy can entail different approaches depending on the drug the patient is addicted to.

If a patient is addicted to a depressant, the withdrawal signs can consist of elevated temperature, heart rate and blood pressure as well as hallucinations, seizures and tremors. The therapy is meant to slowly taper off the quantity of drug used and compensating it with another drug that suppresses the nerves during the withdrawal phase.

If the patient is addicted to stimulants, the withdrawal signs may be extreme cravings, anxiety, weakness, paranoia, depression and even suicidal ideations and psychosis. The therapy is done by the giving of emotional encouragement from the specialist, doctor, friends and family. For the alleviation of depression or psychosis the doctor may prescribe certain medications to the patient.

If opioids are what the patient is addicted to the withdrawal effects can include cravings, anxiety, yawning, sweating and running nose.  Opioid addiction can also cause more severe effects like diarrhea, vomiting, muscle and bone pain, tremors, stomach cramps, high blood pressure, rapid breathing and pulse, dilated pupils, depression and insomnia. To counter these effects, methadone or buprenorphine therapy is given.

Biofeedback

This is a therapy that monitors certain physiological functions of the body like muscle tightness, skin sensitivity and temperature, heart rate and blood pressure and provide the patient the means to control them. This therapy helps patients undergoing methadone therapy to substantially relieve anxiety and stress. It is also a good therapy against opiate addiction withdrawal symptoms.

Cognitive Therapy

This therapy modifies the perception of the patient towards himself as well as his addiction in addition to changing his habits to more healthy ones. This therapy helps people probe their own thoughts that help them create their behaviors and feelings – modifying the way patients think can help them modify their actions as this therapy theorizes.

Meditation and Self-Esteem Building

Healthy affirmations and meditation can assist addicts into ceasing their addiction. Meditation and self-esteem building therapies help build the confidence of the patient and make him modify the way he thinks of himself. Through these two therapies the patient can discover new values and consciousness that help him appreciate himself more and give him peace of mind.

Nutritional Supplements

Nutritional supplements or herbal medications are potent neutralizers for withdrawal symptoms making therapy for recovering addicts much easier. Studies have shown that recovering addicts who took certain supplements suffered less drug cravings than those who were not given supplements. Those who received supplements also suffered less sleeping disorders, depression and anxiety compared to those not given any supplements. The supplements given included D-phenylalanine, tyrosine, L-glutamine, linoleic acid, lysinate, magnesium, calcium, amino acids, vit B6 and multivitamins.

Motivation Therapy

Motivation therapy encompasses varied techniques like motivational, spiritual and behavioral strategies among others. This therapy targets social rehabilitation and teaches life skills and risk behavior to make the withdrawal and cessation from drugs completely successful.  It improves self-confidence in a person and introduces new and much better lifestyles and a more productive life.

Acupuncture

Acupuncture is part of traditional Chinese medicine that has been practiced for over 4,000 years. The World Health Organization (WHO) has listed 40 health conditions that acupuncture can treat. The list includes acupuncture’s potency in helping treat drug addiction. This therapy uses ultra thin non-hollow needles inserted at various points in the body to treat a wide range of conditions. One particular type of acupuncture very effective in controlling cravings for drugs is ear acupuncture or auriculotherapy. Acupuncture is now widely used in a lot of rehab and detoxification centers in the United States. It used to be as a complimentary treatment for methadone therapy. Nowadays, more acupuncture is used than methadone treatment considering that acupuncture does not have any side effects to the body.

Goldfarb Chiropractic and Acupuncture Center
1339 Pleasant Valley Way
West Orange, NJ 07052
Phone: 973-325-8884
www.acupuncturewestorange.com

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