Addiction is a complicated and multifaceted issue, one that is driven by multiple underlying root causes which can be extremely difficult to overcome. The standard, most widely accepted treatment protocol for addiction is participation in an inpatient drug and alcohol rehabilitation program. There is, however, a great deal of controversy surrounding the addiction treatment industry and addiction itself, and many are skeptical that a 30 to 90 day rehabilitation program can really help them overcome an addiction that may have affected their lives for years. Evidence shows that drug rehabs do work, and treatment programs across the country are responsible for helping hundreds of thousands of people find freedom from their addictions every year.
Why Drug and Alcohol Rehabs Work
Drug and alcohol rehabilitation programs have several unique benefits that make them effective for treating addiction.
First and foremost these programs grant addicts an extended dedicated period of time to be free of their addictive substances and focus on recovery. One of the reasons addicts struggle to overcome addiction on their own is that they are just not able to come off substances long enough to gain clarity and insight into their own addiction. While in rehab, they are supervised and prevented from having access to drugs and alcohol, which can give them the freedom to clear their minds and bodies and to gain new perspective.
Rehabs help addicts to identify, understand, and address the root causes of their addiction. Addiction does not develop by accident. People typically begin using drugs and alcohol as a coping mechanism to deal with aspects of their life that are difficult or painful, and that they are not able to address on their own accord. They will attempt to bury, numb, or escape that painful issue through drinking, using street drugs, or by self-medicating on prescription drugs. Drug rehabs provide trained staff, support, counseling, life skills and techniques to help addicts get to the root of their underlying issues and address them in a positive, proactive way.
Drug and alcohol rehabs help to give addicts tools, support, and a plan for dealing with life and ongoing recovery after the program has ended. The struggle does not when a person is able to get clean in rehab and complete a program. Maintaining sobriety after leaving rehab is the real challenge, and it can be fraught with pitfalls and ongoing temptation to relapse. A well constructed rehab program will help a recovering addict learn to confront and manage these temptations and pitfalls, and how to choose not to use again when issues reemerge.
Rehab Programs provide a vital community of other recovering addicts, all working together to overcome their addiction. Recovery is an extremely difficult journey for any individual, and having others to go through it with can make it seem more attainable. They are able to give and receive support from each other, and also develop an ongoing support network to aid with continued sobriety after the program has ended.
They may offer specialized detoxification and medication assisted withdrawal services which may be vital to helping an addict overcome the very difficult process of initially getting clean. Coming off of drugs and alcohol can often cause extremely unpleasant, painful, and sometimes dangerous withdrawal symptoms, and many addicts fail to become sober on their own because they are unable to handle the withdrawal. They cannot cope with the pain, and in severe cases, they may actually be endangering their lives by quitting without medical supervision. Rehabs provide staff and clinicians specially trained to guide a person safely through detoxification and provide support during the withdrawal process. The techniques used help to alleviate the stress and discomfort and most importantly ensure the safety of the client.
In short, drug and alcohol rehabs give recovering addicts the life skills they need to become productive members of society and live happy and fulfilling lives after completing rehab. These go beyond tools just to stay sober, but extend to all skills they might need to be successful in life. When a person has been lost in their addiction for a long time, they may lose track of how to function in the real world, and become dependent on others to survive. Even if a person can manage to become sober on their own, they will have a hard time maintaining their sobriety if they have not learned the skills they need to function in the world, which can be full of stressors and challenges that can lead to relapse. Rehab centers can provide education, job skills, family counseling, interpersonal skills and other tools to set clients on a path for success.
Recovery Requires Full Commitment
Drug and alcohol rehab is analogous to a diet or fitness plan. It provides the tools needed to make a positive difference, but it requires the full commitment and implementation of the person to achieve the desired results. If an addict approaches their recovery half-heartedly or unwillingly, then their treatment will not be effective, no matter how good the rehab program is. In order to truly recover, and addict must be fully committed to achieving sobriety in their hearts and must be willing to give their all during and after rehab. The consequences of failing to overcome addiction are dire, but the rewards of committing to sobriety and a recovery program are life changing.