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The Importance of Being Involved In Your Treatment Experience

The Importance of Being Involved In Your Treatment Experience

Patients that do not take treatment seriously are likely to use drugs again

People enroll in addiction treatment for a variety of reasons. While many patients seek help because they acknowledge their problem, other people enter treatment because of an overdose, family intervention or due to a court order. Some addicts also enter treatment with other issues that discourage honest participation in the process, and many are simply counting the days until they can get out. A 1992 edition of the Clinical Psychology Review notes that the problems people experience when they dropout of rehab are comparable to those of addicts that avoid treatment. People that simply go through the motions in rehab can also have the same negative outcomes. Motivation and commitment levels vary between patients when they start rehab, but individuals that fail to get involved are typically the ones that suffer most in the long run.

Patients that do not take treatment seriously are likely to use drugs again, and studies show ongoing substance abuse can have profound risks. The Drug Abuse Warning Network reports that drugs were associated with more than 5 million emergency room visits in 2011, which is the equivalent of 1.6 drug-related emergencies per 1,000 people in a single year. One drug with a particularly high risks of abuse is opium (i.e., the dried sap of opium poppy plants) and the drugs derived from it (e.g., heroin, morphine and painkillers). Providing data for 2010, the National Center for Health Statistics notes that painkillers derived from opiates are the leading cause of drug-related death, and 74% of all overdoses are accidental. Many narcotic overdoses occur after treatment, or when relapsed addicts no longer have the tolerance that they had when they actively used.

In addition to reducing overdose risk, treatment can help people in the following ways:

  • Address other problems, like mental and physical health disorders
  • Counseling can resolve family conflict, trauma and unconscious conflicts
  • Rehab often includes practical skills, like anger and stress management
  • Recovery principles help in all areas of life, including interacting with family, friends and coworkers
  • The therapies help craft more positive outlooks, thought patterns and emotional balance

Motivational interviewing is a therapeutic process that helps some patients find personal reasons to change. However, those who are fully committed to treatment can enhance their recovery by taking the following actions:

  • Ignore the clock and calendar and invest all energies into recovery
  • Be open and honest about experiences, feelings, emotions and pain
  • Fully understand and implement relapse-prevention tools and training
  • Learn personal cues that trigger cravings and how to neutralize them
  • Commit to aftercare counseling to monitor the recovery’s progress
  • Have a long-term recovery plan in place before concluding treatment

During treatment, patients typically learn to build support structures, and it is important to expand that support when primary treatment ends. This includes joining a local support group and finding a recovery sponsor. A study published in the 1999 Annals of Behavioral Medicine finds higher one-year sobriety rates for people in support groups, while the 2002 Addiction journal says social networking support predicts lower relapse rates.

If you struggle with addiction or relapse, our admissions coordinators are ready to help. Whether you need treatment or are unsatisfied with your current care, our staff can discuss the potential options and recommended facilities based on your particular needs. They can answer any questions you have about treatment methods, and, if you have health insurance, they can look up your plan’s benefits. Please call our toll-free, 24 hour helpline now to begin recovery.