What Addictions Can Be Treated? Signs of Substance Abuse
What Types of Addictions Can I Receive Treatment For?
While substance use disorders are often the first to come to mind, addiction exists in many forms, including behavioral addictions.
Most addiction treatment centers will employ the basic principles of recovery in all types of treatment plans. However, could be to your benefit to find a program that specializes in your particular type of addiction.
Traditional rehab facilities can effectively treat addictions to alcohol, illicit drugs, and prescription drugs.
There are also addiction treatment facilities that specifically target various behavioral health issues, including a range of eating disorders and behavioral addictions, such as sex, love, gambling, work, shopping, and the internet.
Signs of Addiction
Determining if you or someone you love has an addiction can be unnerving at first, but when you learn more about the signs of addiction, it can become much clearer. Specific signs of addiction will vary according to the substance used, but there are signs common to all addictions, including:
- Experiencing strong urges or cravings to use substances or participate in the preferred activity.
- Continuing to use substances or participate in the activity, even after negative consequences have been experienced.
- Having difficulty fulfilling duties at work, school, or home due to the addiction.
- Continuing to use substances or participate in the activity even when situations can become physically dangerous, such as while driving.
- Continuing to use substances or participate in the activity after facing repeated or persistent issues with social relationships that are due to or made worse by drug use.
- Using the substance or participating in the activity for longer than originally planned
- Being unable to control one’s use of a substance or participation in the activity, or having a strong desire to cut back on use or participate less.
- Spending a lot of time getting, using, or recovering from the substance, or spending a large portion of the day involved in the preferred activity.
- Cutting back on or stopping important actions due to substance use or activity participation, such as occupational, social, or recreational activities.
Each addiction is unique. It is essential to find a treatment center that will address the specific addiction on an individualized basis, tailoring treatment plans according to what a person needs at that point in his or her recovery.
Alcohol Abuse and Addiction
Recovery from alcoholism can be difficult and can be a life-long process. It can, however, be made easier with effective treatment and the proper support.
Alcohol use is common in social situations, although some individuals may cross the line from casual use to alcohol abuse – or an alcohol use disorder – which can range from mild to severe.
One of the hallmark signs of addiction is a loss of control over drinking. For instance, individuals may engage in illegal acts that are out of character, such as driving while being intoxicated, behaving violently, or even stealing. Some of the hallmarks and potential outcomes of addiction include:
- Physical dependency.
- Developing a tolerance.
- Consequences of addiction.
Not all alcoholics develop a physical dependency, but heavy drinkers are at much higher risk of becoming physically dependent on alcohol, especially when drinking occurs on a daily basis.
This occurs when the body becomes so accustomed to consistently receiving certain levels of alcohol that its new balance is upset in the absence of continued drinking, often resulting in subjectively unpleasant if not physically dangerous consequences.
When alcohol intake is suddenly stopped or drastically reduced, a person will experience withdrawal symptoms.
Withdrawal symptoms can include hand tremors, sleep disturbances, rapid heartbeat, perspiration, nausea, vomiting, hallucinations, anxiety, agitation, restlessness, and even seizures.
While withdrawal symptoms can be uncomfortable, it is vital to detox in a medically supervised environment because withdrawal from alcohol can be life-threatening. There are medications that can ease the withdrawal process and minimize the risk of seizures. Adjunctive behavioral therapies, as part of a formal treatment program, can further help manage withdrawal and reduce the risk of relapse.
Continued use of alcohol can lead to a development of tolerance. This occurs when the brain and body become desensitized to the effects of alcohol, and require increasing amounts to achieve the same desired effect. Developing a tolerance, especially if it spurs ever-increasing alcohol use to compensate, can be a warning sign of a budding addiction.
The effects of alcohol abuse and alcoholism are far-reaching, often affecting every area of one’s life. From finances and career opportunities to family, romantic, and social relationships, it can be difficult for an alcoholic to maintain order in any area of life.
Alcohol Abuse Treatment
Alcohol rehab facilities offer effective treatments for alcoholism, giving patients the tools they need to maintain long-term sobriety and repair their lives. In addition, alcohol use and addiction wreak havoc on the brain and body, causing a variety of health issues such as nutritional deficiencies, cirrhosis, brain damage, heart issues, damage to the digestive tract, increased risk of certain types of cancer, and an increased likelihood of fetal injury and post-natal complications when alcohol is ingested during pregnancy. Individuals who abuse alcohol are also more likely to get into automobile accidents, cause personal bodily injury, and commit suicide.
Substance abuse treatment at an professional alcohol rehab facility can help one regain health and begin to overcome alcoholism. Those who undergo treatment are much more likely to achieve and maintain sobriety than those who do not.
Alcohol rehab facilities offer effective treatments for alcoholism, giving patients the tools they need to maintain long-term sobriety and repair their lives. This generally begins in a medically supervised detox facility, where medication may be prescribed to ease the withdrawal process and ensure the safety of the patient.
It is essential to follow detox with further treatment, such as inpatient or outpatient treatment, and many recovering alcoholics find additional support and benefit in self-help meetings, such as Alcoholics Anonymous or SMART Recovery.
There are also a number of FDA-approved medications, such as disulfiram, acamprosate, and naltrexone, for treating alcohol dependence as part of a medication-assisted treatment approach following successful completion of alcohol detox.
Recovery from alcoholism can be a difficult, life-long process. It can, however, be made easier with effective treatment and the proper support.
Alcohol is a Leading Substance Treated in Rehab Centers
Learn more about alcohol abuse, addiction, and how to find treatment in our comprehensive Guide to Alcohol Addiction.
Drug Abuse and Addiction
Drug addiction, both to illicit drugs and prescription drugs, is a common issue in the United States and worldwide. The line between illicit and prescription drug abuse is becoming less distinct as a growing number of legitimate prescriptions become diverted to the illicit market. All forms of drug abuse, illicit or otherwise, place individuals at high risk of developing substance use disorders and should be addressed immediately.
Each of the classes of commonly abused drugs is associated with different characteristics signs of abuse and addiction. Despite the distinctions, it is important to note that all drugs can cause negative health effects as well as serious detriments to a person’s life. Treatment plans will vary according to the drug in question. However, many forms of drug addiction benefit from both professionally supervised detox and therapy programs in treatment.
What Is Prescription Drug Abuse?
Prescription drug abuse occurs when anyone takes a prescription drug in a manner other than medically indicated, such as taking more than prescribed, more frequently than prescribed, crushing the pills up to snort or inject, or when taken without the supervision of a medical professional for the mere purposes of getting high.
Substance Abuse Treatment
It is important to seek help immediately for prescription and illicit substance abuse and addiction alike. Withdrawal from many of the common street and prescription drugs can be uncomfortable, painful, or even life-threatening.
In many cases, it will be important to detox in a medically supervised facility, where medications can be prescribed to ease the symptoms of withdrawal. In the case of drugs like heroin, hydrocodone, and oxycodone, specific treatment medications such as Suboxone are approved for use in facilitating detox and for longitudinal treatment of opioid dependence. As with alcoholism treatment, detox should be followed up by further treatment to address any underlying causes of addiction and develop relapse prevention skills.
If you or a loved one is struggling with an addiction of any kind, contact us today. Our rehab placement specialists can connect you with a high-quality addiction treatment facility that can help you get on the path to a healthy, sober life. We can help to match you with a rehab program that has extensive experience in your specific addiction type and to be best for your individual needs.
Addictions to specific behaviors, rather than substances, are known as process addictions or behavioral addictions. These addictions are no less serious than substance addictions and can be equally damaging to one’s life and health.
In fact, eating disorders are some of the most life-threatening behavioral issues encountered in the addiction treatment sphere today. Prompt treatment is essential to preserve one’s health and happiness.
Treating Behavioral Addictions
Each behavioral addiction is treated differently, depending on the disorder itself and the individual in question, tailoring the treatment to the specific needs of each individual.
All treatment plans will work to find and address the issues that led to the disorder so the patient can learn to live without repeating the detrimental behavior in question.
Most behavior therapy programs incorporate various therapy approaches, such as group talk sessions, cognitive behavioral therapy, individual counseling sessions, art therapy, animal-assisted therapy, exercise, or meditation, and may include medication-assisted treatment as needed. Behavior addictions require specialized therapeutic interventions, and recovery involves effectively managing triggers and preventing relapse. Treatment programs that offer follow-up sessions or support groups can be incredibly helpful to long-term health and recovery.
What Happens During Addiction Treatment?
You may be considering entering a rehab program but want to know more information about what the treatment process entails. When you first arrive at the rehab, you’ll receive an intake evaluation in which a mental health professional assesses many different factors, such as:4
- Mental status.
- Physical and neurological health.
- Medical and surgical history.
- Patterns of drug or alcohol abuse.
- Past substance abuse or detox experiences.
- Demographic features, living conditions, and transportation.
- Financial situation.
The professional uses this information to create an individualized treatment plan for you. This plan will include the various types of interventions and therapies utilized during your addiction treatment program.
You will receive a combination of treatments, such as individual therapy, group counseling, family therapy, peer support meetings, medication management, if applicable, and aftercare planning. The rules of each program is different; some offer private rooms while others require that you share a room with another patient. Some allow family visitation while others don’t, so it’s important to weigh these different qualities when searching for a program. Once you near the end of your treatment program, your treatment team will create an aftercare plan in which you will receive ongoing support to help prevent relapse. Aftercare may include sober living homes, individual therapy, group counseling, 12-step meetings, non-12-step meetings, and alumni programs.
What Is Luxury Addiction Treatment?
For those who desire a more private addiction recovery program or a program that will accommodate continued workplace obligations, luxury rehab programs and executive rehabilitation centers are available.
At such facilities, patients enjoy luxurious surroundings, heightened levels of privacy, gourmet meals, cutting-edge treatments, and upscale amenities, such as spa services, which can play a role in the recovery process.
Getting Treatment for Drug and Alcohol Abuse
Addiction rehab works and recovery is possible. When calling facilities, you’ll want to make sure you have your insurance card in front of you so that you can tell the admissions consultant what type of insurance you have and what your policy number is.
They will then use this information to verify your benefits and they may be able to help guide your search for the appropriate rehab for you. You’ll also want to provide them with information regarding the substance(s) used, duration of use, and average dose of use. It’s important to report any known physical or mental health conditions as well.
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- American Psychiatric Association. (2013). Diagnostic and statistical manual of mental disorders (5th ed.). Arlington, VA: American Psychiatric Publishing.
- Mayo Clinic. (2015). Alcohol use disorder.
- Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. (2016). Fact sheets: Alcohol use and your health.
- Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration. (2006). Detoxification and Substance Abuse Treatment: A Treatment Improvement Protocol, TIP 45