Taking Care of an Ill Loved One

The Most Important Aspects of Substance Abuse Treatment

The best substance abuse programs work to correct the chemical, psychological, and circumstantial problems that can lead to a substance addiction. A combination of different tactics is great for attacking the problem from many different angles. Here are some of the most important ways to treat a substance abuse problem.

Tackling the Chemical Problem

Substance abuse can change the level of certain chemicals in the brain, such as dopamine, so one part of treatment focuses on restoring the brain to a healthy, balanced level. There are a few ways to do this with substance abuse treatment, including diet and exercise routines and medications. 

Psychological Intervention

Part of the substance abuse problem can have to do with the patient's coping skills. Alcohol or drugs can be used as a crutch, making it easier for the patient to deal with stress and life problems. Psychological counselors can help to correct this problem by helping the person reduce and manage their stress levels and find new ways to cope with difficult situations. 

Lifestyle Intervention

In some cases, a lifestyle change is needed to prevent relapse. The patient might need to avoid triggers that make them want to abuse their substance of choice. For instance, if certain places or people make their addiction stronger, then the patient may need to come up with a plan for cutting these people and places out of their life. A trained counselor can help the patient find and avoid their triggers. 

Social Support

One other helpful aspect of substance abuse treatment is the social support component. Many treatment facilities provide mentors, peers, and group talk sessions that create a sense of solidarity and understanding. The social support can help the patient gain strength when they're on the verge of relapse. 

Relapse Support

A substance abuse facility wouldn't be complete without a relapse plan, since some patients will inevitably experience a relapse. Some facilities include relapse treatment in their services and will readmit a patient for free if they relapse. At the least, your treatment center should provide a counselor that you can talk to if you have thoughts about relapsing or have experienced a relapse. 

While not all substance abuse programs will include all of the methods mentioned above, it's important to evaluate each treatment to make sure that it has a variety of support systems. There are many great substance abuse treatment programs out there that provide a holistic treatment plan. For further information, consider speaking with a representative from an establishment like Focus Treatment Centers.