Drug Addiction Treatment: Facts and Principles

Drug addiction is “a chronic disease characterized by compulsive, or uncontrollable, drug seeking and use despite harmful consequences and changes in the brain, which can be long lasting,” according to the National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA).

Addiction affects both the brain and the behavior of a person, and if left untreated for too long, it can bring in untold miseries in the lives of those involved.

Merely heading to a Oxycodone Detox treatment center may not be the ideal solution every time. Knowing certain facts and principles of treatment is crucial to a long-term recovery and relapse prevention. So, it is paramount to know the tenets of an ideal and successful treatment program.

Effective treatment principles

NIDA has proposed the following principles for an effective treatment, based on exhaustive scientific studies over the years:

    • Addiction is a complex but treatable disease that affects brain function and behavior: True, addiction is difficult to manage, both for addicts and their kin, but it can be treated and addicts can go back to lead a normal life.
    • No single treatment is right for everyone: There is no one-size-fits-all kind of a thing in addiction treatment. A treatment which is effective for one may not work for others at all.
    • People need to have quick access to treatment: Early intervention holds the key to a successful addiction treatment. When treatment is delayed, the problem exacerbates, and chronic addictions always entail difficult withdrawal symptoms and intense treatment procedures.
    • Effective treatment addresses a patient’s needs, not just his or her drug use: A holistic treatment is a procedure which is all encompassing, catering to and reaching out to an addict’s most inner recesses.
    • Staying in treatment long enough is critical: Sobriety is not possible without a commitment to stay in the treatment. A steely resolve and unflinching support of loved ones can make a treatment fruitful.
    • Counseling and other behavioral therapies are the most commonly used forms of treatment: These two are the most frequently applied techniques to treat substance abuse patients.
    • Medications are often an important part of treatment, especially when combined with behavioral therapies: Medicines form an integral part of addiction treatment and are often administered in conjunction with behavioral therapies.
    • Treatment plans must be reviewed often and modified to fit the patient’s changing needs: Clinicians, family members and others related to an addict must periodically review treatment methods so as to match them with the addicts’ changing needs.
    • Treatment should address other possible mental disorders: An addiction is mostly the fallout of a mental condition and dual diagnosis problem is very much a reality. Hence, a proper treatment program always looks into any possible mental disorders as part of the treatment.
    • Medically assisted detoxification is only the first stage of treatment: Treatment is a layered process interspersed with medicines, counseling, and other therapies. The detox is just the beginning and the cleansing process is a precursor to the actual treatment.
    • Treatment doesn’t need to be voluntary to be effective: Irrespective of whether one goes for treatment voluntarily or coaxed by others, it is the treatment program which can bring the desired results.
    • Drug use during treatment must be monitored: An inpatient treatment is beneficial as recovering addicts are under the constant vigil of clinicians and their drug use is monitored 24/7.
  • Testing for other contagious diseases is important: Treatment programs should always test patients for HIV/AIDS, hepatitis B and C, tuberculosis, and other infectious diseases. They should also be apprised of steps to be taken to reduce their risk of these illnesses.

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