Developing a drug addiction isn’t a character flaw or a sign of weakness, and it takes more than willpower to overcome the problem. Abusing illegal or certain prescription drugs can create changes in the brain, causing powerful cravings and a compulsion to use that makes sobriety seem like an impossible goal. But recovery is never out of reach, no matter how hopeless your situation seems. With the right treatment and support, change is possible. Don’t give up—even if you’ve tried and failed before. The road to recovery often involves bumps, pitfalls, and setbacks. But by examining the problem and thinking about change, you’re already well on your way.
Behavioral Health of the Palm Beaches (BHPB) is a comprehensive treatment center that provides mental health and trauma programs in addition to their reputable addiction program. BHPB was founded in 1997 by Dr. Donald Mullaney, a recovering addict. BHPB has some of the most talented treatment professionals in the nation who help outline specialized treatment plans for each patient. Treatment lasts a minimum of 30 days, but long-term care lasting up to 12 months is available.
The first step in recovery is deciding if you have a problem. This can be difficult, because your addicted-self will try hard to convince you that you don't have a problem. This is where a trained professional can gently help. They can keep you from tricking yourself and prevent you from slipping back into denial. They are trained to look for signs of trouble.
Outpatient drug rehab programs are also available, and they can vary in terms of intensity as well as length.5 Some outpatient programs may last from several hours per day to just a few times per week. Outpatient care typically allows patients to remain at home while receiving necessary treatment. This can be beneficial for individuals who are attending school or need to maintain a regular work schedule.6 The disadvantage to nonresidential care is that individuals may typically still face daily struggles that can trigger drug abuse.7
Disulfiram: Disulfiram (Antabuse) interferes with the way a person’s body process alcohol, and produces a very unpleasant reaction that includes flushing, nausea, and palpitations. Because of the unpleasant reactions to drinking alcohol, patients often neglect to take the medication, which limits its usefulness. Disulfiram is most effective when administered under supervision, such as by a spouse or clinic.
Stimulants like cocaine and meth can cause long-lasting damage to the brain, altering the way you think, feel and experience reality. Drug addiction facts from the Journal of Neurology, Neurosurgery & Psychiatry highlight that chronic cocaine use can cause the brain to shrink, a condition called cerebral atrophy. Long-term cocaine use can cause cognitive impairment even after the drug is no longer used, while those who have used methamphetamine may continue to experience hallucinations and psychotic episodes after quitting.
Substance abuse therapy: Used as a part of many inpatient and outpatient programs, therapy is one of the cornerstones of drug addiction treatment. Individual, group and family therapy help patients and their loved ones understand the nature and causes of addiction. Therapy teaches coping strategies and life skills needed to live a productive, sober life in the community. For individuals with a co-occurring mental illness, intensive psychotherapy can also address psychiatric symptoms and find the underlying issues that contribute to addiction. Inside Shalom House, Australia’s ‘strictest’ drug rehabilitation | Australian Story