Drug Abuse and Dependence - Treatment
Detox helps get you ready for treatment. It does not help you with the
mental, social, and behavior changes you have to make to get and stay clean.
Treatment for a drug problem usually
involves one or more types of therapy.
- In group therapy, you talk about your recovery with other
people who are trying to quit. You can get support from others who have
struggled with dependence.
cognitive-behavioral therapy (CBT), you learn to
change thoughts and actions that make you more likely to use drugs. A counselor
teaches you ways to deal with cravings and avoid going back to drugs.
motivational interviewing (MI), you resolve mixed
feelings you have about quitting and getting treatment. A counselor helps you
find personal motivation to change.
- Motivational enhancement therapy (MET) uses motivational interviewing to help you
find motivation to quit and get you started toward recovery. It usually lasts
for 2 to 4 sessions.
- Couples or
family counseling can help you to stop using drugs,
stay drug-free, and improve your relationships with your partner and
Treatment usually includes support group attendance, such
as going to Narcotics Anonymous (NA) meetings. Your family members might also
want to attend a support group such as Nar-Anon.
You may take medicines to help you quit
or to help you overcome
withdrawal symptoms. Medicines often are used for
opiate drugs like heroin or certain painkillers.
Medicines that can help you include:
- Buprenorphine, such as Subutex. Buprenorphine works by
targeting the same places in the brain that opiates do. This relieves drug
cravings without giving you the same high or side effects as opiates.
- Methadone, such as Dolophine. It works on parts of the
brain and spinal cord to block the "high" caused by using opiates. It also
helps reduce cravings and withdrawal symptoms caused by opiate
- Naltrexone, such as ReVia. It blocks the effects of
opiate drugs and helps reduce your craving.
Treatment programs can be
outpatient, inpatient, or residential. They offer similar therapies. Your
treatment team can help you decide which type of program is best for you.
outpatient treatment, you regularly go to a mental
health clinic, counselor's office, hospital clinic, or local health department
inpatient treatment, you stay at a hospital and have
therapies during the day or evening. This usually lasts around 6 weeks. You
most likely will then go to outpatient therapy.
- Residential treatment provides a place for you to live for 6 months or more while
you recover. You get therapy and 24-hour care. This may be a good option if you
have a long history of drug abuse or crime or if you have an unstable work or