Antisocial Disorder and Addiction Treatment
About 3 percent of men and 1 percent of women have an antisocial personality disorder, according to an article produced by the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism, and substance abuse is commonly associated with this mental illness. People with an antisocial personality disorder struggle with boundaries and rules, and they may experiment with substances as a method of acting out and flouting society’s laws. They may also wrestle with feelings of rage and/or anxiety, and Valium might seem like an appropriate tool to help them cope. The disorder is also associated with impulse control deficiencies, however, meaning that people who take Valium for symptom relief may transition to taking the drug compulsively, and addiction may soon follow.
Antisocial personality disorder is associated with low levels of insight, meaning that people who have this condition may truly believe that they don’t have any kind of problem at all. They may not ever seek help for their mental illness on their own, and similarly, they may not ever discuss their Valium addiction or ask for help with this matter. Instead, they may resist all calls to change, and their disorders may worsen and deepen with time. When people like this cannot obtain any more Valium, or their addictions land them in trouble with the law or with their employers, they often enter treatment programs and begin work.
According to the Mayo Clinic, antisocial personality disorders require long-term therapy. People with this mental illness may have deep-seated, longstanding problems with relating to others and behaving appropriately in social situations. Instead of forming tight connections, they may:
- Shut down
Breaking through longstanding behaviors like this is hard, and often, therapists spend long periods simply working with the person and encouraging him/her to open up and share. The therapeutic alliance can allow the person to see, perhaps for the first time, that working with others might be better than working against others. The person might also feel comfortable with talking and sharing, rather than throwing up a wall of anger, and this might also be transformative.
Working With Addiction
All the treatments mentioned above are designed to prepare the person to work through an addiction issue. Putting Valium aside might be hard for these people, but when they trust their therapists and know that the treatments will make life better, they may be able to go through a slow taper down of Valium until they’re taking no drugs at all. When sobriety like this has been achieved, people can learn how to identify their triggers for Valium use, and they can develop new plans they can put into place when their minds seem to call out for the drug once more.
Traditionally, addiction therapy relies on group work. Therapists may hold sessions for many addicted people at once, and these same people might attend support group meetings in which no therapist is present. It can be transformative work, but it’s not always a good option for people with antisocial disorders. People like this may not trust others or even like others, and as a result, they may find group therapy more irritating than helpful. Not everyone with an antisocial personality disorder feels with way, but those who do might be best kept out of group settings.
If you’d like to know more about Valium addictions in people with antisocial personality disorders, please contact us at Alta Mira Recovery.