Drug addiction can take many forms. It can begin with experimentation with drugs such as cannabis or prescription medication and can progress to abuse of substances like heroin, cocaine, or crystal meth. Many individuals develop an addiction to the aforementioned medication prescribed to treat a legitimate health problem. They might not even grasp the fact that they have developed an addiction until they try to stop taking their pills and realise that they are no longer able to function or feel ‘normal’ without them.
In whichever way drug addiction begins and whatever form it takes, one thing is certain; those affected need help to regain control of their lives. How drug treatment helps in this endeavour depends on the type of addiction one has and whether the individual in question can even accept that he or she has a problem.
Do You Need Help?
There is no point in even talking about how drug treatment can help you get back on your feet if you are adamant that you do not have a problem. Perhaps you are only here reading this article because a loved one has suggested you may need help? You might believe that this person is wrong and that your substance use is well within your control?
If this sounds familiar to you, think carefully about the substance you are using. Although you may be convinced that you do not have a problem, this could be the result of the drugs you are taking and how these are affecting your brain.
Certain chemical substances, such as some illegal drugs and prescription pills, can affect the structure of the brain and the way that it functions. One part of the brain that is affected is the frontal lobe, which is the part of the brain responsible for logical thinking and decision making.
If your brain has been affected by drug use, you might not be able to think clearly, in which case you may not be able to see what is clear to everyone else. Take some time now to think about your substance use habits. For example, are you taking more of this substance than you used to, or are you taking it more frequently?
Have You Developed a Tolerance?
Whatever chemical substance you are using, there is a distinct possibility that you could have developed a tolerance to its effects. This is a common occurrence with drug use, be it illegal drugs or prescription medication.
As your brain adapts to the substance you are using, it will adjust its production of the natural feel-good chemical dopamine. So, while your brain might have released a surge of dopamine when you first began taking this substance, resulting in the rush of pleasure you initially experienced – it may now be releasing smaller amounts, meaning that you are not getting the same feelings of pleasure anymore.
An increased tolerance to drugs can result in a temptation to increase the amount you are using. By doing this, you increase the perceived amount of pleasure you get; but it can also be highly dangerous and could result in physical dependency followed by a crippling addiction.
Are You Addicted to Drugs?
It is difficult to tell when drug use has spiralled out of control. Your loved ones might be in a better position to judge that something is not right. They will have noticed the changes in your behaviour and even if they are not quite sure what the cause is, they will know that things are not the same as before.
You need to be honest with yourself about how you act and feel when you take drugs as this will determine if you have, or are on your way to, an addiction. Ask yourself the following questions:
- Have you increased the amount of drugs that you take?
- Do you try to hide your drug use from loved ones?
- Have you tried to quit or cut back on your drug use without success?
- Do you feel irritable or anxious when not taking drugs or medication?
- Do you take drugs to change the way you feel or to help you function?
- Do you feel guilty or bad about your use of drugs?
- Are you neglecting your responsibilities at home or work because of your drug use?
- Have you lost interest in activities, hobbies, personal grooming or hygiene?
- Are you lying to loved ones, your work colleagues, or employer about your drug use?
If you have answered yes to any of the above questions, then you could have a problem. If you have answered yes to two or more, then it is highly likely that you need treatment to help you get better. How drug treatment can help you and the type of treatment programme that you need will depend on how severe the addiction is.
What Help Is Available?
If you do have an addiction to drugs, it is important that you seek help as soon as possible. Overcoming the addiction should be your only concern right now as failure to access treatment at this point could cause your current situation to steadily deteriorate.
Addiction is a progressive illness that tends to worsen if left untreated. The good news, however, is that it is a treatable condition and there is plenty of help available. Middlegate can help you to find the right programme for your requirements. We work closely with all types of rehab providers, including private clinics, charities, and even the NHS. We will find a suitable programme for you; moreover, if you need help with the admission process, we will be there for you every step of the way.
What Is Drug Detox?
You should know that the first step on the road to recovery is a detox. If you are unsure what detox is, allow us to explain. It is the process whereby your body eliminates all the toxins and chemicals that remain in your system when you quit drugs.
You might have already seen a few withdrawal symptoms whenever you needed drugs; you may also have learned that these symptoms subsided whenever you take the medication or drug of choice your body craves.
During a detox programme, you will quit drugs. During the process, there is a strong probability that you will experience a variety of withdrawal symptoms as your body adjusts to the fact that you are no longer taking the substance it has come to depend on. You can expect the symptoms to be more intense than those that you had before when in need of drugs.
A detox can be an unpleasant experience, especially if done without the supervision of medical professionals. It is highly recommended that, if possible, you detox in a supervised facility. This way you will have the benefit of staff with experience of the process. They will know how to make you more comfortable and they may even be able to prescribe medication to help with withdrawals.
Most drug detox programmes last for around a week or two, at which point your mind and body should be sufficiently clear of mood-altering chemicals for you to begin the next stage of your journey.
Accessing a Drug Rehab Programme
After detox, you will need to work on the emotional and psychological aspects of your illness. These elements of addiction are not addressed during a detox. With a rehab programme though, you can learn the reasons for your addiction and then how to avoid a return to it in the future.
With various treatments that could include cognitive behavioural therapy, 12-step work, and complementary therapies, counsellors and therapists can help you to overcome your drug addiction.
To access a programme of rehabilitation, all you need do is get in touch with us here at Middlegate. We can provide a full assessment of your situation to determine your requirements. We will then match you to a suitable provider based on those needs. If you choose to take the next step by accessing treatment, we can help with this as well.
If you simply want information at this stage, then please, still contact us. Our team of advisors are fully trained in all types of addiction and can answer any queries you have. We want you to get help for your illness and we will assist in any way we can.
How Can Drug Treatment Help You?
Drug treatment is designed to help you get your life back on track. Exactly how drug treatment can help you is determined by how well you respond to treatment and how resolute you are to beat your addiction.
If you are prepared to work hard, and you have a strong motivation to succeed, you can say goodbye to drug abuse – hopefully permanently. When you do this, many areas of your life will improve. You will notice improvements in your health and you may be able to start rebuilding relationships with those you love.
When you are no longer abusing drugs and are getting your life back under control, you may also be able to improve your financial situation. You could return to work and get that promotion your addiction had been standing in the way of. Or you could return to education and study a completely different subject with a view to a career change. There are just so many opportunities that await you when you are no longer a slave to drug addiction.
If you want to find out more about how drug treatment can help you to get your life back on track, please call us at Middlegate today. We are waiting to take your call.