Friday, August 19, 2022

Substance Abuse Services: 10 Tips for Getting the Help You Need

Unfortunately, there is no magic solution to substance use disorder, as those in recovery need to work hard to maintain abstinence. With relapse rates above 40% after rehab, those in recovery should take every possible precaution to ensure a long and healthy life.

Fortunately, there is a lot you can do to get the most out of your stay in rehab and ongoing treatment. Let’s talk about getting the help you need with substance abuse services.

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  1. Understand the Problem

Acknowledging that you have a problem is the first step to recovery, and learning to understand it is even more helpful. Recognizing the signs and symptoms of addiction, how you feel about quitting, and where to go from here is just as important as acknowledging the problem.

Throughout your journey, you will learn more and more about yourself, but it’s important to take a look in the mirror and understand the problem at hand and the challenges ahead. If you don’t accept these challenges, then you’re less likely to overcome them.

Especially if you’re still unsure about treatment, ask yourself how your issues have affected you and those around you and what type of future you would like to have for yourself.

  1. Intervene (For a Loved One)

If you’re reading this out of concern for somebody else, then good for you! They need you more than ever.

However, interventions are very tricky and a failed one can lead to dangerous results, including potential self-medication, which has a higher risk of overdose, or physical confrontations. Here are some tips for successfully intervening.

Set the Tone

Ask yourself, have you ever been persuaded to do something because someone yelled at you and told you to do it? Most of us don’t work that way.

When talking to others who will speak at the intervention, and to the loved one who needs help, it’s best to focus on the loving and caring aspects than to try to create guilt or tension.

If you come to them with genuine concern and nobody initiates conflict, you are far more likely to receive a positive reaction, which is essential for their recovery. Remember, this isn’t about anyone else.

If they don’t want to be in rehab, then they may as well not have gone. You’re trying to persuade them to want to go, so ensure that everybody is on board with that.

Choose the Right People

Consequently, nobody should be invited who will create tension of any kind. If your loved one feels uncomfortable around one person, has a negative history with them, or if they’re known for being hostile in any way, then they shouldn’t be a part of it.

If their feelings are hurt, so be it. Again, this isn’t about them. A one-on-one intervention is far better than a group of ten if that group will create discomfort.

Find the Right Time

Of course, there is never a “right time” for such a difficult conversation. However, some are certainly better than others.

Ideally, this will take place at a time when they aren’t inebriated or in a bad mood. If it’s difficult to find that time, try to make the best of a bad situation or wait until you find them in the right mindset.

Stay On-Message

Assuming everybody has their statements prepared, remember to stay on message during the intervention. Remember, you only get one chance.

You can ask them to sit down and listen, but don’t tell them what to do. Don’t belittle, berate, or overlook their feelings in any way.

Have a list of treatment options available they agree to seek help, as you want to limit their time between the intervention and the time they enter treatment.

If you’ve done all of this and it still doesn’t work, don’t pursue them or escalate the situation, as this could lead to a dangerous situation. Instead, give them space to work it out. You’ve planted the seed, so they may come around.

  1. Choose the Right Substance Abuse Services

We will always recommend inpatient treatment during early recovery. Not only does it offer everything that you can find in outpatient treatment, but it also offers a controlled environment free of substances and access to around-the-clock medical attention during detox. There are also different rehab centers available that you can choose from, like a treatment center with separate facilities for men and women. At Ledgehill Treatment Center for Men, they offer high-quality, evidence-based treatment programs and services.

However, we also recognize that any treatment is better than no treatment. Thankfully, you have plenty of options to choose from.

Substance use disorder (SUD) is extremely common and affects every demographic. For this reason, there are more types of treatments than you can believe, including:

  • LGBTQ treatment services
  • Dual diagnosis (substance abuse and mental health)
  • Treatment for women
  • Trauma victims with SUD
  • Prescription medication addiction
  • Alcohol addiction
  • Opioid addiction

Also, you may need help for somebody who is underaged, since it isn’t only an adult issue. Alcohol is killing teens. Whatever type of treatment is best for you or your needs, find a local facility that offers it.

What to Look For

Beyond the type of services, there are a few other factors to keep in mind. First, accreditation is key for rehab centers, especially in the form of state licensure.

You also want to find a program that offers evidence-based treatment, rather than treatment based on religious or spiritual beliefs, unless that’s something you’re specifically looking for.

Next, if you’d like to have family support to help you and your loved ones heal and build a functional future, then that’s something to look for.

Lastly, you want to look for the services they offer you and your family, including family therapeutic services, medication-assisted detox, and more.

  1. Reach Out for Help

Once you’ve found the right treatment program, reach out and verify your insurance with them. If you find the right program for your needs, ask about admissions and find the earliest possible time to enter.

If you’re still not certain about the substance abuse treatment you’re looking for, then this is a great chance to talk to them about what they offer to see if it’s the right fit. There’s no harm in calling a substance abuse treatment center to get more information.

  1. Have a “Why”

Write down a list of reasons why you are seeking help. Don’t just keep it in your head, as negative thoughts will force you to quickly forget these reasons.

By giving yourself a reference to look back at, you can remind yourself of all the reasons why you want to get sober when things get difficult, in or out of rehab.

Especially during early recovery, the challenges you face may seem overwhelming, but they get easier as time passes. When things get too difficult, you may want to just give up.

However, if you have a reminder of your “why”, then you’re more likely to stick to it. We’re 42% more likely to achieve goals that are written down, so jot down your feelings and your idea of the life you want to live so you remember them.

  1. Try to Learn

Once in rehab, try to participate and learn as much as possible. If you’re serious about turning a new leaf and starting fresh, then you will want to have all of the tools at your disposal to do so.

Rehab is only 30 to 60 days, and in that time, you need to learn the skills necessary to last you a lifetime. Treat it like it’s a college course with tests you have to take both tomorrow and years from now.

This means active listening, being present, and asking questions when you have them. Not only from the staff but also from your peers. You can learn something from everybody and take it with you for the rest of your life.

If you think of questions to ask or topics to discuss with your therapist or support group, why not write them down ahead of time? The sooner you start, the better.

Also, try your best to follow the rules of your substance abuse treatment center, and try to be respectful to everybody. They’re there to help you.

  1. Be Honest 

Most of the time, the challenge with being honest in rehab isn’t about being honest with your peers or staff, but rather with yourself. Learning to be entirely honest about how you feel is a serious learning curve, but it has to be overcome during this time. It’s critical for maintaining abstinence.

For example, there will be times in your life when you feel like abusing substances again. Without the ability to communicate those feelings to yourself and those around you, you’re far more likely to succumb to the pressure.

Not only that but repairing broken or harmed relationships is another important step in recovery, and you can only do that with honesty.

  1. Have Realistic Expectations

Set realistic goals and don’t expect a “quick fix” of any kind. The fact that rehab centers have such a high relapse rate is not due to their ineffectiveness, but rather the nature of substance use disorder.

Understand that you will not walk out of rehab and never experience cravings again, never doubt yourself, or have an easy time staying sober.

Instead, rehab seeks to help you develop the tools necessary to overcome these challenges, which is why active listening and engagement are so important.

Don’t just set goals for sobriety either. Set long-term and short-term goals to help yourself become a happier and more successful person. These goals could include:

  • Starting a daily exercise routine
  • Eating a healthy diet
  • Learning XYZ on an instrument
  • Getting a job or changing careers
  • Finding a partner
  • Spending more time with positive people

The list goes on. When it comes to making sobriety goals, take it one step at a time. It’s okay to lose the forest for the trees in this case and focus on the milestones that are closest to you.

If you’re three weeks into sobriety, there’s no sense in worrying about two years yet. One month is a big enough deal that deserves celebration, and it’s the responsible concern to put your efforts toward that won’t lead to unnecessary frustration.

  1. Have Support Systems in Place

Treating addiction is not as simple as going to rehab and forgetting about it. Recovery is a lifelong process that requires ongoing care.

For that reason, it’s critical to have support systems in place after you receive treatment, including ongoing outpatient treatment, family support, and therapy services.

If you have a close relative, partner, or friend with whom you spend a lot of time, talk to them about your concerns and, most importantly, let them know about potential relapse triggers.

Try to create a substance-free environment in your home and personal life, distance yourself from toxic relationships, and focus on what helps you live a sober and productive life.

  1. Find Ongoing Treatment

On that last note, a support system wouldn’t be complete without ongoing treatment. Therapy services and support groups are excellent for ongoing support, finding points of contact, and meeting sober companions.

Also, therapy is excellent for treating underlying conditions that may be associated with or linked to SUD.

Regardless, any outpatient treatment or sober living facility is an excellent way to help with long-term sobriety.

Start Your Journey to a New Life By Substance

Now that you know more about substance abuse services and what they can do for you, there’s no time like the present to get started. The sooner you do, the sooner you can enjoy your new, sober life.

Start your journey today and keep reading our blog for our latest tips!

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