What Every Professional Needs To Know About Alcoholism And Drug Addiction
Alcoholism & Drug Addiction are common realities in today’s society. Some estimates have shown that over twenty percent of the United States population battles with a substance abuse problem. Not only health caregivers and social workers encounter this population on a regular basis. Indeed, even company managers and professionals most likely encounter some (if not many) of this percentage more often then not. Professionals in their positions of authority may be the only ones with the opportunity to help. It is their opportunity to spot drug dependency and (hopefully) offer the availability for effective individualized and holistic treatment. A little perception and educated kindness may mean the world of difference – maybe even save a life.
Who Does Drug Addiction Affect?
Addiction’s effects insidiously spread. Bringing only destruction, sorrow, and pain, it affects not only the addict, but also the people in his/her life. Hurting friends and family, drug addiction also permeates professional settings. Employees with dependency problems hurt businesses and create aggravating and possibly unsafe work environments. In medical settings, addiction intensifies the care needed from psychological and physical health providers.
Many untrue myths on the origins of drug addiction continue to circulate. Some attempt to pinpoint the social groups most affected. Others attempt to recognize addiction as an illness or a moral defect. These falsehoods must be stopped. While they perpetuate unnecessary confusion, fear, and shame, these inaccurate conclusions augment problems and make them more difficult to treat. Addiction does not appear in any particular component of society. Rather, it affects every socio-economic class, ethnicity, and gender. Not a disease and never an indication of a “bad” person, addiction is merely a problem that needs solving. There is no reason to label drug addicts with untrue stereotypes, and there is no need to fear them. At some point everyone struggles with life’s hurdles and needs help from others. Addicts are no different from anyone else. No one chooses addiction; rather, addiction steals from him/her. With kindness, help, and support from others, people can reclaim their lives.
How Can Drug Addiction Be Detected?
With most drug addictions there are warning signs. Some are characteristic symptoms of particular substances. (e.g., most alcohol can be smelled on the breath; constant sniffling may indicate a cocaine user, puncture scars inside the elbows can suggest syringe use for heroin abuse, etc.). However, there are many general indicators as well:
* Red or dilated eyes
* Slurred speech
* Cold or sweaty hands
* Difficulties concentrating
* Moody, impatient, dangerous, and/or violent behavior
* Extreme periods of energy (e.g., constant talking) and/or fatigue
* Sudden or decreasing disregard in personal appearance or hygiene
* Sudden change in friends
Well over half of drug users work, and two out of five have taken an illicit drug at their work site. Unsurprisingly, almost half of work related accidents involve substance abuse. While this causes daily frustration for managers and fellow employees, low productivity and damages cause money losses. Mistakes and inappropriate behaviors put employees and customers in danger. Substance abuse on the job manifests in many ways:
* Decreases the quality and/or speed of work.
* Constant absences and/or tardiness (especially right before a weekend or holiday break and right after payday): Researchers find that drugs cause over sixty percent of work absences.
* Often leaving work early
* Lengthening breaks
* Talking more on the phone
* Stealing company supplies and/or profits
An employer may detect job performance issues; whereas, a health provider may spot behavioral issues during an exam/evaluation. However, regardless of a professional’s role, it is vital that action follows even the slightest amount of suspicion. Helping a substance abuser will not only help the addict, but also the others that love and work with him/her.
How Can a Professional Help a Drug Addict?
Addiction can be permanently treated. But then why do so many recovering addicts return to the same behaviors? Posing a severe problem in and of itself, addiction rarely develops on its own. Substance abuse most often results from inadequate coping of conscious and unconscious deeper issues. Problems stem from unresolved childhood traumas, current personal tensions, and occasionally deep troubles at work. Dependency denial merely enlarges the initial denial. Substance abusers require extensive patience, compassion, and sensitivity to treat and to heal. For this reason, addicts may need constant encouragement to pursue treatment options. Employees may benefit from job-enforced treatment programs. Unfortunately, while abuse instigators are commonly known, treatment is often misunderstood. However, with individual and holistic treatment that heals the underlying causes for the dependency on drugs and/or alcohol, the addiction itself can disappear!
By preparing ahead of time, professionals can ensure that they provide substance abusers with sufficient help. Below are some suggestions. (These do not substitute for the help of a professional interventionist, nor should they be used in an intervention-type scenario).
Step One: Educate Yourself on the Signs of Drug Addiction
First, know how to recognize addiction; look for warning signs (stated earlier). Second, become familiar with strategies for handling with a possible drug addition (described in the following text).
Step Two: Talk to the Person
This may prove to be the most difficult step. Fears of being wrong often deter people from approaching a possible addict. However, it is better to talk to a person and be wrong then to say nothing and allow an addiction to continue. Even if a person does not have or is in denial of having a substance addiction, he/she will still know that someone cares. However, always broach the topic in an unthreatening and non-accusatory manner. When criticism and condescension are eliminated, a person shows his/her true concern.
Step Three: Offer Guidance and Suggestions
While demonstrating concern is essential, it is important not to come on too strong. Destroying well-intentioned help, “overbearing” concern may end up smothering and discouraging a substance abuser. A substance-abuse situation is a delicate matter. While addiction may be apparent, all other issues, which perhaps contributed to the present condition, are not. Sobriety can never be achieved unless an addict takes charge of his/her own situation and decides to change his/her lifestyle. With gentle guidance and suggestions, professionals enable addicts to utilize necessary agency.
Step Four: Be Supportive
Even if professionals delicately ask about a possible addiction, the addict may still refuse help. Substance abuse and its initial/current life problems create massive feelings of helplessness. They may not feel capable of stopping their addictions, and they might not trust others, even those that want to help. Nonetheless, with persistent patience and compassion, a professional can communicate his/her sincerity; and eventually, the addict may gain the necessary trust and courage for drug rehab.
The Lasting Recovery of Individual and Holistic Alcohol and Drug Rehabilitation
People suffering from addiction need both benefits of individualized care and of socialization with others facing the same obstacles. Individualized treatment is essential for enduring sobriety. While symptoms may be common, causes are never completely shared. Being an individual automatically implies that life is experienced uniquely. People require different addiction treatment therapies, and people need adequate time to explore their individual sorrows and stresses in a secure environment. However, the benefits of solidarity should never be overlooked. When rehabilitation centers provide one-on-one individualized treatment, the individual and social components combine to bring faster and healthier healing.
Substance abuse attacks from all angles and progressively weakens a person into sequestered parts. Holistic addiction treatment naturally reunites body, mind, and spirit into an enduring whole person again.
Drug Rehab Centers should offer a variety of specified therapy treatments. Incorporated with individual chemical dependency counseling, state-of-the-art methods of psychotherapy and hypnotherapy enable people to heal from anxiety and memories which often cause the self-medicating substance abuse. Family counseling repairs the relationships contributing to and brought on by addiction. Life purpose and spiritual counseling enable people to embrace their true identities and to move positively forward.
Rejuvenating all components of human life, comprehensive alcohol and drug rehabilitation offers further treatments including:
– Physical Training
– Nutritional Advisement
– Yoga/Music/Arts Treatment
– Image Therapy
– Peaceful and Soothing Environment
Complete drug or alcohol rehab programs develop further specialty therapies to address specific client needs. A staff team closely works to create the best individualized/holistic treatment possible. Most importantly, all activities focus directly on healing the initial problems that caused the dependency.
Professional help is needed to eradicate substance abuse. With valuable societal positions, professionals play critical roles in the detection and recovery of substance abuse/addiction problems. Due to society’s variety of occupations, most drug addicts encounter at least one, if not more, professionals at some time. After the identification of warning signs, consistent patience, compassion, and support will guide addicts not only to drug rehabs, but also to ideal addiction treatment programs that provide enduring natural sobriety. Individual and holistic addiction treatment is available.