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Drug Abuse Interventions

If you have a loved one that is struggling with addiction, you know, all too well, the chaos drug addiction can cause within the family unit. Whether your loved one is a partner, a friend, or a family member, the effects of the drug abuse and dependency can be devastating to the person who is living with the addiction and everyone around that person.

Interventions for Drug Abuse

Unfortunately, many drug treatment programs focus on the addiction or abuse and not the underlying cause of the addiction or the reason people turned to drug abuse in the first place.

As family units struggle to accommodate the needs of the substance abuser, anger and resentment on all sides of the equation grow. This creates division and strife within the family, making it even more difficult to agree on the proper course of action moving forward.

Drug abuse interventions include the family, involve the family, but introduce the added benefit of an impartial presence to help the family and the drug abuser find a much less destructive path forward.

What are Drug Abuse Interventions?

The short answer is that a drug abuse intervention is a meeting involving family and friends, along with a trained interventionist, with the goal of creating an open and honest dialog about how the continued drug abuse is affecting the person and those who love that person.

The goal is to get the drug user to seek (and accept) treatment for his or her drug addiction.

The sooner you seek the help drug abuse interventions have the potential to offer, the better the outcome may be for your loved one and your family.

Most people who abuse drugs cannot stop on a dime. They will need to go through a rehabilitation program to assist in the process. Drug addiction is rarely a one-dimensional problem. The right rehabilitation program understands that and will seek to address the underlying causes of the addiction as well as co-occurring illnesses and conditions that might otherwise delay or derail recovery altogether.

The purpose of drug interventions is to get the abuser to admit that he or she has a problem and to agree to seek help through a rehabilitation program. The Surgeon General promotes the idea that early intervention for substance misuse and abuse is essential for improving the odds of a successful recovery among those who abuse drugs.

What You Need to Understand About Drug Addiction

Addiction is a far-reaching illness that affects more people than you realize. In fact, research indicates that approximately 24 million Americans over the age of 11 struggle with either alcohol or drug addiction. Of those, only two million are receiving treatment for their addictions. That leaves 24 million families across the country trying to cope with the realities of loving someone who struggles with drug addiction.

Even among the two million who seek help and agree to treatment for their addictions, many of them will relapse at some point. For drug addiction, the relapse rate is between 40 and 60 percent. The problem of drug addiction is complex and there are no easy solutions.

However, a unified family willing to do whatever it takes to support and aid a loved one in the recovery process is one of the most important tools you can put to work to address the problem. Drug abuse interventions can be instrumental in encouraging your loved one to get the help he or she needs to successfully recover from drug addiction as well as co-occurring illnesses and conditions.

What Should You Expect During Drug Abuse Interventions?

While everyone hopes for the best when it comes to drug abuse interventions, it’s important to prepare yourself for the fact that it may not work. Your loved one may refuse help. If that is the case, it’s important to follow through with the warnings you made during the interventions that you will no longer enable or excuse the behavior.

How Your Loved One May Respond to an Intervention

These are the things you should expect during a drug intervention.

  • Anger from the drug user. Your loved one is likely to feel threatened and maybe even a little attacked, especially if you’ve been accommodating the behavior until now. Remain calm and rational throughout the intervention and avoid the temptation to say things in anger.
  • Your loved one will attempt to deflect or change the subject. It’s important to work with the interventionist prior to the meeting to come up with a plan and stick to the plan throughout the conversation.
  • Your loved one will attempt to delay committing to treatment. Don’t let this happen. Force an answer immediately if possible and have an abuse rehab facility lined up ahead of time that can take your loved one right away. Even if your loved one agrees, you do not want to allow him or her the opportunity to rethink the decision.

Planning ahead allows you to physically and mentally prepare for the reality of the situation. This means you can have a treatment center lined up, have a wide range of friends and family present, and make sure everyone knows the situation, what’s going on, and what is expected of them throughout the drug intervention process.

How Do You Know You Need a Drug Intervention for Your Loved One?

Chances are good that you know if a loved one is struggling with a drug addiction problem.

However, if you’re not sure your situation requires an intervention, at least not at this point, look for the following signs that your loved one is struggling.

Signs it May Be Time for an Intervention

  • Secretive behavior or hiding things from friends and family.
  • Borrowing money (often from multiple people).
  • Difficulty going to work or performing at work or in school.
  • Unexplained health issues.
  • Aggression and erratic behavior.
  • Changes in appearance (for the worse).
  • Zero motivation or energy.

The unfortunate truth is that many people struggling with drug addiction often begin using drugs to mask untreated physical or mental health concerns. Mental illness and drug addiction are often co-occurring and can feed one another if both conditions aren’t identified and treated at the same time. Recovery from addiction without treating the underlying problem is rare – at least in any lasting capacity.

Is Now the Time for a Drug Abuse Intervention?

Research has indicated time and again that the sooner the intervention takes place the more effective it has the opportunity to be. That means that it is never too early to plan a drug intervention if your loved one is abusing drugs. The sad reality is that for many families, it is too late.

In 2019 alone, more than 70,000 Americans lost their lives to drug overdoses. That doesn’t include people who died as a result of driving under the influence of drugs, drug-fueled suicides, and other drug-related incidents. For those people and their families, it is certainly too late to stage a drug abuse intervention. What this means for you is that now is the ideal time to plan a drug abuse intervention if you have a loved one who is struggling with drug addiction.

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An intervention for drug abuse will give your loved one the ray of hope they need to chart a course for a brighter, healthier, sober future.

Call Addiction Interventions today for a free consultation with a trained interventionist and to start the process of planning a drug abuse intervention for your loved one.

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