How to Help a Drug Addict
Do you recognize the signs of addiction in someone you care about, but don’t know what to do about it? If so, you’re not alone. The feeling of helplessness can be overwhelming, especially when the drug addict is your child. The steps you take will depend on the extent of the addiction and the willingness, or lack thereof, by the addict to accept the best drug treatment available.
Misconceptions to Avoid
A major misconception by people who have had no exposure or experience with drug addiction is that all you have to do is just stop using. It is not that simple, since drugs affect the way the brain processes information and perception. Once the brain becomes accustomed to the drug being in charge, a new “normal” is established. This new state of being requires a continued level of drug to maintain the status quo. To break this cycle, careful monitoring of the mental and physical state of the addict is necessary.
How to Help an Uncooperative Drug Addict
Because of the effects of some drugs, an addict may not be able to properly process the need for treatment. He or she may be so dependent on the drug that it is impossible to see life without it. In the case of an uncooperative drug addict, you may find it necessary to make the decision for commitment to a top drug rehabilitation facility. Depending on the age of the addict, you may need legal intervention for getting treatment.
If illegal activity is involved with drug use, such as robbery, assault or any other criminal action, the court system may find it profitable to require admission to a rehabilitation facility. Even when an uncooperative addict is forced to go through treatment, the course can be and often is very successful. Once the drug is out of the system and the mental reasoning resources return to normal, many drug addicts go on to lead drug-free lives.
How to Help a Cooperative Drug Addict
If your friend or family member recognizes the need to get help for addiction, there are some things you can do, such as:
- Look for a top drug rehabilitation facility and program. Offer to make contact and ask questions about the types of programs available and the success rate of participants.
- Don’t expect more than what the addict can deliver. Be there to support and encourage, but not to condemn. Offer positive reinforcement for every effort made.
- Be alert for signs of relapse and get help, if indicated. Drug addiction is chronic and must be managed continually.
Decide to Get Help
The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services reports that in 2010, about three million people 12 years of age and older experimented with an illicit drug for the first time. This averages to about 8,000 new users per day. Don’t sit back and let your family member or friend be a drug addiction statistic. Call today and reach out for help that can bring sobriety to a life that needs it.