Interventions are a drastic, but often necessary, step needed to convince drug or alcohol abusers to seek help for their problem. To succeed, family members or friends need to carefully plan the intervention and solicit the help of a doctor or professional alcohol or drug counselor.
What Is an Intervention?
An intervention seeks to use peer pressure in a positive manner to push addicts to admit to their problem and seek help. For example, an intervention in Florida might involve family members confronting an addict about his or her problem and urging the addict to seek treatment in South Florida detox centers.
In an intervention, family and friends who want to convince an addict to seek help will gather together and confront him or her unannounced. During the intervention, each member of the group confronting the addict will explain how his or her relationship with the addict has been harmed by the addict’s drug or alcohol problem. Participants will plead with the addict to seek help and list consequences of not seeking treatment.
Many interventions are overseen by mental health professionals, who direct the intervention, keep participants on topic, and offer options for treatment to the addict.
Interventions are emotionally stressful and draining, as confronting a friend or family member about addiction is always hard. Making ultimatums and outlining consequences for an addict’s behavior are also very stressful for participants.
How to Stage an Intervention
Because of the high stakes involved with an intervention, it’s important to do everything you can to ensure that an intervention you stage for a loved one is a success . Here are some best practices for staging an intervention:
- Enlist professional help – Trained addiction counselors understand interventions and know the best approaches to take in convincing addicts to seek treatment. Friends and family members of addicts can often be exasperated by their loved one’s behavior and may go too far in an intervention. A trained addiction counselor will work with participants in the intervention ahead of time to ensure that they’re saying the right things to convince the addict to seek treatment.
Trained counselors can also provide advice for intervention participants regarding other issues the addict may have. For example, it’s important to carefully craft an intervention if an addict has a history of suicidal behavior, violence toward others, or is taking legitimate medication for mental health issues.
- Assemble an intervention team – Typically, the intervention team will consist of family, friends, and co-workers of the addict who will confront him or her during the intervention. The people on the intervention team should know the addict well and have a vested interest in seeing the addict seek recovery. People who are currently struggling with substance abuse issues of their own should likely not be on the intervention team, but addicts who have successfully overcome similar issues can be an asset.
- Get educated – The members of the intervention team should be knowledgeable about the extent of the addict’s problem. Sharing information among yourselves is important to ensure that all members of the team speak with one voice on the issue. Members of the intervention team should also read reliable journals and publications about abuse, addiction, and recovery so that they have a better understanding of the addict’s situation. Learning about south Florida detox centers and rehabs can also help.
- Develop a plan – You and the members of the intervention team should plan the event. Start with setting a place and time for the intervention. Also, collaborate with one another to determine what each member of the team will say to the addict.
- Write impact statements – Members of the intervention team should develop personal statements outlining how the addict’s behavior has impacted their lives and their relationships with the addict. Written statements will give the addict something to review after the intervention and can really make the message that participants in the intervention are trying to deliver hit home. Impact statements need to be grounded in love, but also provide an honest appraisal of how the addict’s problem is harming his or her life and the lives of others. Avoid personal attacks in these statements.
- Rehearse – Members of the intervention team should rehearse their statements to the addict before the intervention. Rehearsal helps eliminate problematic language in participants’ statements and helps ensure a singleness of purpose among the members of the intervention team. Rehearsal also helps ensure that statements are not long-winded and that everyone gets the opportunity to speak.
- Prepare emotionally – Interventions are emotionally fraught. Participants in an intervention need to be prepared for pushback from the addict. They also need to be mindful of their own feelings and avoid the desire to go on the offensive against the addict. It’s perfectly natural to have feelings of frustration with an addict, but the intervention’s purpose is to help the addict, not to give you the opportunity to vent.
- Manage your expectations – Not every addict will have a “road to Damascus” conversion as a result of an intervention. For some, the decision to seek help may come more slowly. Be realistic about your expectations, and be ready to continue to have conversations with the addict after the intervention.
- Following up – Your efforts to help an addict don’t end with the conclusion of an intervention. It’s important to follow up. If the addict expresses a desire to seek help, connecting him or her with a south Florida detox center or another rehab program is important. Providing continued encouragement and support is also helpful.
If the addict does not the intervention, it also falls on you and the other participants to enforce any ultimatums made in the intervention, such as withdrawing financial support, revoking parental rights, and limiting contact. It’s tough, but sometimes these actions are the only way to prompt an addict to seek the help that he or she desperately needs.
Drug addiction is a major problem in our society, harming addicts and those who love them. Opiate addiction has become an increasingly thorny public health challenge as prescription drug abuse and heroin abuse have spiked in recent years. Learning the physical signs of heroin abuse and prescription opiate abuse can help family and friends of possible addicts begin the process of helping their loved one seek help.
While interventions are emotionally charged, they do have a strong track record of success in convincing drug and alcohol addicts to seek help. An intervention’s chance of success is also bolstered by having a trained professional drug or alcohol counselor’s participation.
The National Council on Alcoholism and Drug Dependence says interventions involving a trained professional have a 90 percent rate of success in convincing an addict to seek treatment. Even if an intervention does not immediately convince an addict to seek help, it can be a determining factor in the addict seeking treatment later.
The key is to convince addicts that they want and need treatment. Voluntary addiction treatment typically has better outcomes and a longer-term success rate than treatment mandated by the courts or other forms of compulsory treatment.
South Florida Detox Center operates outpatient detoxification facilities in Broward, Palm Beach, and in the Treasure Coast area. The practice focuses on heroin and opiate detox for Florida residents. Physicians with South Florida Detox Center primarily use Suboxone treatment to help patients eliminate their opiate addiction. Programs for patients are tailor-made to account for their individual physiology and other needs. To begin your journey toward living clean and sober, contact South Florida Detox Center today.
Detoxing is the process of eliminating an addictive drug from your body; this step is often the foundation of long-term addiction recovery. Understanding how heroin addiction and opiate detox work can give you the educational framework you need to understand why this treatment process is beneficial and how it will help if you are suffering from an opiate-based drug dependence in West Palm Beach.
I Can Detox Any Time I Want
Many individuals suffering from heroin addiction tell themselves they can perform their own detoxification whenever they want. However, the truth is that it is very hard to quit heroin and other opiates “cold turkey,” simply because these drugs create such a strong drug dependence even after a short period of time. Heroin withdrawal symptoms can range from severely uncomfortable to medically dangerous; in the vast majority of cases, it is these withdrawal symptoms that prevent individuals from detoxing on their own, not a lack of willpower or desire to quit.
Suboxone Treatment is Addictive
Suboxone treatment uses a substitute drug to prevent the body from experiencing severe withdrawal symptoms during opiate detox. However, Suboxone is not addictive in the same ways as opiates, and the Suboxone treatment is overseen by a qualified physician. Suboxone is only given during the detoxification process, then the patient is slowly weaned off the drug until they are completely drug-free. Once this has been achieved, additional substance abuse treatment can begin to achieve long-term freedom from drug addiction.
Heroin Detox is Inpatient-Only
One of the major benefits of Suboxone-based opiate detox is the ability to recover in the comfort and familiarity of your own home. This outpatient-based drug detox treatment is overseen by a physician, but can be kept private by allowing you to return home during detoxification, rather than remain in an inpatient treatment center. While it is typically not recommended that you drive while taking Suboxone, you can still maintain many other aspects of your normal daily schedule during treatment.
Sometimes, it’s easy to determine when drug use has become a problem. For example, the use of crack cocaine, heroin, ecstasy, and similar illegal drugs is always considered to be a problem because there is no accepted medical use. However, abuse is not as easy to determine when the drug was legally prescribed. Often, individuals who eventually require drug detox and substance abuse treatment in West Palm Beach were legitimately prescribed the medications that have now caused their addiction.
Regardless of whether an analgesic drug was legitimately prescribed, patients tend to develop physical tolerance over time. Their bodies will need increasing amounts of the drug in order to obtain the same amount of pain relief. Drug abuse occurs when the patient uses the drug in a manner other than prescribed, such as taking additional amounts above the recommended dose. The patient may begin to crave the drug or to feel angry if they miss a dose. If family members express their concern, the patient may become secretive about taking the drug. These are all indicators that substance abuse treatment is needed.
Opiate detox is a necessary first step toward addiction recovery. It can be particularlydifficult to initiate opiate detoxification because of the severe withdrawal symptoms which accompany the process. Fortunately, medications such as Suboxone make detoxification much easier. If you or a loved one has been struggling with an addiction to opiates, you should consider visiting one of our drug treatment centers located in Sunrise to discuss treatment with Suboxone.
Suboxone Inhibits Withdrawal Symptoms
When opiates leave the body, an addict can experience mild to severe symptoms that may include nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, and abdominal cramping. Muscle aches, hot and cold sweats, fatigue, anxiety, irritability, and insomnia are also possible. These uncomfortable symptoms prompt many addicts to return to using drugs again to obtain relief. As an alternative, when an individual instead uses Suboxone, the buprenorphine in the medication will attach itself to the opioid receptors in the brain. It serves as a substitute for the opiate to convince the brain that opioids are present in the body. Essentially, the vast majority of withdrawal symptoms which are normally experienced have now been eliminated.
It Does Not Result in Euphoria
Buprenorphine is a partial opioid agonist, rather than a full opioid like heroin or oxycodone. This means that when the drug attaches to the opioid receptors in the brain, it does not produce the pleasurable feelings of euphoria or a high that an opiate would produce. Suboxone treatment allows users to safely get through opiate detox without experiencing the intense physical craving for their drug of choice.
It Includes Safeguards Against Abuse
When using medications to treat drug dependence, it is only natural to be concerned about the potential for abuse of the prescribed drug. One of the ways Suboxone guards against abuse is that those who a prescribed Suboxone do not feel euphoria when they take a dosage. Another safeguard built into the drug is the “ceiling effect.” This means that even if a user takes more Suboxone than the prescribed dosage, he or she will not get high from the additional dose. Suboxone includes the drug naloxone in addition to buprenorphine. Naloxone is an opioid antagonist that can bind to the opioid receptors in the brain. When the drug is used correctly, naloxone does not have any significant effect. But if someone tries to abuse Suboxone by injecting or snorting it, the naloxone rapidly travels to the opioid receptors, displaces the buprenorphine, and triggers severe withdrawal symptoms. These are all very effective safeguards.
The first step in treating a heroin addiction is to visit one of our three drug treatment centers located near West Palm Beach. Our physicians and other staff members will be able to evaluate your needs and offer an individualized care plan. These drug abuse professionals can help you learn the proper way to use medications to fight your drug addiction. They can also conduct periodic assessments and provide referrals to other treatment services such as counseling and AA/NA meetings.
Suboxone treatment is commonly used for recovering heroin addicts. It can help you get through drug detox without intensely craving the drug. The buprenorphine in Suboxone works by binding to the opioid receptors in your brain, which blocks withdrawal symptoms and cravings. Suboxone also contains naloxone, which prevents recovering addicts from abusing the drug. Suboxone is taken sublingually being placed under the tongue. If you’re prescribed sublingual Suboxone, you’ll place the prescribed dosage underneath your tongue and allow it to dissolve.
Methadone has been used for decades to treat heroin addiction. Methadone is an opioid agonist that helps prevent withdrawal symptoms during drug detox . It also prevents the feeling of euphoria that fuels addiction. This medication is frequently used for recovering heroin addicts who were not able to successfully beat their addiction through other medications. If you’re prescribed methadone, you’ll have to go to an outpatient drug treatment clinic every day. Unlike Suboxone, methadone is only dispensed on a daily basis.
Naltrexone is a non-addictive opioid antagonist that works by interfering with the actions of opioids in the brain. One possible drawback to naltrexone is that patients often have difficulty complying with their prescription instructions. A long-acting formulation of naltrexone is now available to counteract this problem. You could receive the injection once per month at an outpatient clinic, instead of taking daily doses.
Medications are essential for successfully overcoming heroin addiction. However, combining medications with counseling can be even more effective. The physician at your outpatient substance abuse center may refer you to a psychologist for behavioral therapy. Cognitive behavioral therapy and contingency management have been shown to be particularly helpful for recovering heroin addicts.
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