30 Aug Addiction Treatment Drugs
Over the past few decades, new prescription drugs have been developed that aid in the addiction recovery process. These drugs serve a wide range of purposes, from decreasing withdrawal symptoms to making drug use less desirable. While addiction treatment drugs are not a cure for addiction, and additional therapy is necessary for a successful recovery, they can help to ease the process and help an addict to stay focused on getting healthy.
The Effects of Addiction Treatment Drugs
There are several different addiction treatment drugs available, and all are tailored to address different issues. The addiction treatment drugs used to address alcoholism generally work by causing negative side effects when someone using the drug drinks alcohol. These negative side effects include nausea, vomiting, headache, and even death in some severe cases. This acts as a deterrent for an addict who may otherwise give into cravings and drink. He or she forced to pause and reconsider or suffer consequences worse than the craving.
Other addiction treatment drugs work by blocking the effects of the drug, stripping it of any value to the addict. The pleasurable feelings associated with drug use are not present, and the craving for the drug is not satisfied, or is at least greatly diminished, so the addict refrains from using the addictive substance in the first place.
Opioid replacement drugs are another type of addiction treatment drug mainly used to reduce withdrawal symptoms. Some of these drugs can also be used for longer periods of time in order to manage long-term addiction issues, but they are usually prescribed for 6 months to one year. They act by causing a similar response in the brain that an opioid would cause, replacing the need for the addictive substance. These drugs carry a dependence of their own, but it an addiction easier to overcome than opioid dependence is, so the switch from opioids to the replacement drug becomes part of a weaning process.
At Therapia, we recommend that you check into rehab for your entire detox and withdrawal process, as well as your residential therapy portion of recovery, in order to get the best start possible. Trying to go through withdrawal on your own can prove to be too difficult and lead to an early relapse. Even if you make it through withdrawal on your own, the process will be exhausting and you’ll be checking into rehab physically and mentally drained. We’d rather you go through the withdrawal process here, under the care of trained medical personnel. Depending on the nature of your addiction, they may be able to prescribe and administer addiction treatment drugs that can decrease the impact of withdrawals. Then you’ll be able to begin your recovery process in as healthy condition as you can, which will give you a better chance at success.
Not a Replacement for Therapy
Although addiction treatment drugs can be an important tool in a recovery program, they do not work as an addiction cure, or as the only form of therapy an addict will need. Addiction therapy drugs are only a short-term aid, and other forms of therapy will need to be employed if the addict hopes to have permanent success. Engaging in the Therapeutic Community Model, receiving intensive counseling, building a support system, and participating in a 12-step program are just a few examples of other therapeutic avenues that will need to be explored as part of addiction recovery. Addiction is a disease that affects the whole person, and the whole person will need to be treated in order to overcome it.