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Detox Alone Will Not Treat Drug Addiction

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In the world of alcohol and drug addiction recovery, two common myths that need to be displaced are that either detox is enough or a 28-day drug rehab stay is enough. Horror stories accompany many people who gain some sobriety and clean time, only to relapse soon after a newly found way of life. Unfortunately, in these circumstances, the last state of the person who relapses is worse even than the first; the addiction is augmented and more ferocious than before. People often inquire about the success rates of a drug treatment facility, and usually the numbers of people who are successful, are the ones who have diligently pursued a course of action and are active in their program of recovery. By this it is meant that not only is the individual fully committed to the process, but the process itself is adhered to.

Process Of Change

This process is best exemplified by the Trans-theoretical Model of change. This model walks a person through not only the progression down into life-threatening and problematic addiction, but also highlights the phase most often overlooked: maintenance and relapse prevention. Rightfully so, a person living in the destructive throes of active substance abuse needs a life preserver thrown at them, and immediate abstention and extraction from the drugs or alcohol and circumstances is imperative. But, just like finding safety from a flood on top of a roof, the fact remains that you are no means clear of danger. Time spent in a detox and drug rehab is the gracious wake-up call that life needs to be lived in a whole different manner, and relapse prevention techniques can be the way to ensure you don’t sleep through your alarm!

An old axiom to differentiate the dichotomy between two ways of life is “if it takes you (x amount) of years to get into the woods, it takes (x amount) to get out of the woods.”  While this aphorism is not necessarily substantive in and of itself, the implications should be apparent to all. In the case of an addict or alcoholic, ways of adverse thinking and decision making long before the first use or drink were entrenched into the psyche. The problem, in other words, is in the person, and the solution also emanates from changes in thinking and decision making. This is where the benefit and necessity of long-term recovery comes in.

Getting ALL The Help You Need, Not Just What You Think You Need!

When treatment centers promise a light at the end of the tunnel, this is contingent on following through with all the medical recommendations of the treatment staff and doctors. Admittedly, there are certain cases in which people can simply walk into a detox or a drug rehab and freely live their life not being enslaved to an illicit substance. The goal should not be to simply become abstinent, sober, or what is sometimes called “a dry drunk.” The real issues still reside and influence corrupted thinking, and will manifest themselves in other ways. The way of the woods is a hard journey and can be long, and that is why aftercare programs, halfway houses, and 3/4 way houses are vital to sustained sobriety and recovery.

When you stop to think about it, you have to put at least the same amount of effort into your program of recovery as you did in your addiction, and it can be a great help to take advantage of continuing recovery programs and stabilize viable relapse prevention. An addict or alcoholic did not become addicted overnight and it’s unrealistic to believe they will recover overnight. If a few months are spent healing from addiction to obtain a life time of sobriety and freedom from drug abuse or alcoholism, isn’t it worth it?

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