There are many misconceptions about how to help a drug addict. Some people believe conquering a drug addiction is a matter of will power, and an addict who truly wants to end the dependency on drugs can easily turn away from the narcotic. However, drug addiction is much more complex than simply altering behavior. In order to help a drug addict, one must understand that addiction is a chronic brain disease and the battle to overcome it will most certainly be hard fought. 1: Know the signs and symptoms of drug dependency. A radical change in personality may indicate an individual is abusing drugs.
Personality changes are a common sign of all types of drug addiction, including alcoholism, a dependency on prescription drugs and opiate abuse. Needle marks may be evident on the arms of someone who is abusing opiates, although many addicts become skilled at hiding evidence of intravenous drug use by injecting the drugs in unseen areas, such as between the toes. Opiate abusers may appear unusually thirsty or sweaty. The pupils of opiate abusers often appear as pinpoints. The frequent smell of alcohol is a red flag of alcoholism.
Alcoholics may exhibit irritable behavior, slurred speech, unusually bright or glassy eyes and difficulty expressing thoughts and ideas in a logical manner. Alcoholics often try to hide the physical evidence of their addiction, including empty bottles and cans. Individuals abusing prescription drugs may exhibit sings of intoxication, including clumsiness and slurred speech. Someone with a dependency on prescription drugs may appear droopy eyed. 2: Consider staging an intervention so the addict’s loved ones can demonstrate how the drug abuse is affecting them.
An intervention may also include the addict’s colleagues and church representatives. While an intervention will likely be overwhelming to the addict, the intent is not to put the addict on the defensive, and you should carefully select intervention participants. Prior to the intervention, develop at least one treatment plan to offer to the addict. The intervention will mean little if the addict does not know how to get help and does not have the support of loved ones. The loved ones staging the intervention may consider enrolling the addict in a treatment program prior to the intervention without the addict’s knowledge.
Participants should prepare specific examples of how their loved one’s drug abuse has hurt them. Often, those staging an intervention choose to write letters to the addict. An addict may not care about self-destructive behaviors, but seeing the pain drug abuse inflicts on others can be a powerful motivator for seeking help. Do not wait until the addict’s behavior has spiraled so far out of control that relationships and situations cannot be repaired. Ideally, the addict should seek help for addiction before consequences, such as job loss, abuse and neglect of loved ones and financial ruin, occur.
Be prepared to offer specific consequences if the addict rejects seeking treatment. These consequences must not be empty threats, so the addict’s loved ones should consider the consequences they will impose if the addict does not seek treatment and be willing to follow through with them. 3: Find an appropriate drug rehabilitation program. If the addict is going to be escorted to the drug treatment center directly from the intervention, arrangements must be made beforehand. If an intervention is not necessary, assist the addict in researching both the addiction and recommended drug treatment plans.
Be supportive and allow the addict to feel in control of the impending rehabilitation. Contact several rehabilitation clinics and inquire about their services. Don’t be afraid to ask specific questions about their daily schedules and how they handle relapses. Ask if you may tour the facility, and keep in mind that the more receptive the addict is of the treatment plan, the better the chances of overcoming the addiction. 4: Expect relapses. Because drug addiction is a chronic disease, it can be managed, but not cured. Relapses will most likely happen, and the addict should not consider a relapse a failure.
However, treatment will be needed following each relapse. 5: Be the best friend you can be. Be there for them (text, call, see them, do fun activities, play sports, hang out, and support their hobbies and interests often. This means you should also hang out with them or suggest a favorite activity of theirs (no matter how much you don’t like it) when they try to shrug off or are offered their substance.
Try to remain positive in your outings with them. They need to know that there will be people to support them on the road to recovery. : Encourage and suggest the potential freedoms of new, healthier lifestyles, when the addict recovers. Edit Tips Being that addiction is a physical, mental, and spiritual disease; this too, as well, should be the goal (in this order) to overcoming/meeting the disease head on. Howie I am doing this to help u out because I love u so much and I want u to read this. I have also read this to help me understand. Idk if u understand or not but I love u so much that I want u to get help…I love u with all my heart baby please get help. I love you……love always Cassandra rose dutcher