The Importance of Aftercare in Addiction Treatment

The Importance of Aftercare in Addiction Treatment

You have completed an inpatient treatment program and now you’re cured! Unfortunately, that is not the case. There is no known cure for addiction however there is treatment and rehab is only part of that treatment.

Statistics and common sense dictate that the longer someone receives treatment, the better their success rate at achieving and maintaining sobriety. This is where the importance of aftercare in addiction treatment comes into the picture.

What is Meant by Inpatient Rehab?

Inpatient rehab, or residential, refers to the stage of addiction treatment that involves staying in a facility and receiving intensive therapy. Inpatient treatment is the first step of addiction treatment and usually lasts for about 30 days.

What is Meant by Aftercare in Addiction Treatment?

Aftercare refers to further interventions and treatment that follow rehab. It is additional support that is given following completion from the residential part of the program. Aftercare in addiction treatment can take many forms and can be any combination of these forms of support that involve teaching new skills and coping strategies.

The Importance of Aftercare in Addiction Treatment

The importance of aftercare in addiction treatment becomes clear in its results: people who receive some type of aftercare are less likely to relapse and more likely to live longer. Aftercare in addiction treatment can help you to stay motivated and provide support when your journey gets a little bumpy. You will acquire knowledge and skills from the treatment facility but, the most important learning takes place during normal everyday living. Aftercare in addiction treatment will support you in finding new solutions as new problems in recovery arise. In this way, the importance of aftercare treatment becomes evident: you will bank new and effective coping strategies in the time you spend out of inpatient but while getting aftercare support.

Relapse and the Importance of Aftercare in Addiction Treatment

Unfortunately, relapse affects a great many in recovery. Relapse is not inevitable, though. It is known that people who have a strong aftercare treatment plan are more aware of their relapse triggers and so they are more likely to spot the warning signs that they are heading for a relapse. The importance of aftercare in addiction treatment when it comes to relapse patterns is that these preventive measures are the most effective at stopping a relapse in its tracks.

Types of Aftercare

Intensive Outpatient Therapy (IOP)

IOP is the perfect supplement to inpatient rehab because you get to attend individual and group therapy during the day and then have the afternoon and evening for getting back to work or enjoying hobbies or having simple down time. IOP is a good idea because you can continue therapy and the progress you were making while in rehab instead of abruptly stopping after completing treatment.

Halfway House/Sober Living Community

After completing an inpatient program, it is an extremely good idea to live in a halfway house or sober living community before returning home or getting your own place. Halfway houses, sober houses, and sober living communities provide a supportive environment where you live among other people who are staying sober and working towards their recovery. It’s a good stepping stone to rejoining society at-large: there is less structure than rehab but more structure than living alone.

12 Step Meetings and Other Support Groups

There are 12 Step fellowships and Non-Twelve Step groups who hold meetings as a form of a recovery-based support group where members can attend at no cost and share in their experiences with others like them. Members find empathy, encouragement, and even networking at these meetings.

Booster sessions

Former patients of a rehabilitation program are sometimes offered what is called “booster sessions” depending on the facility and its policies. Booster sessions are a way for recently graduated patients to continue to receive counseling once they have completed the program.

Private Counseling

Continuing previous or beginning new counseling and therapy with a private therapist is another form of aftercare. Counseling address issues relating to recovery and addiction as well as to a dual diagnosis such as depression, anxiety, or bipolar disorder. A great many addicts also have a co-occurring mental illness.

 

 

 

 

 

Source:

http://www.dualdiagnosis.org/

Hallucinogen Persisting Perception Disorder

Hallucinogen Persisting Perception Disorder

What is Hallucinogen Persisting Perception Disorder?

Hallucinogen persisting perception disorder (HPPD) is a disorder characterized by a continual presence of sensory disturbances, most commonly visual, that are reminiscent of those generated by the use of hallucinogenic substances. Previous use of hallucinogens by the person is necessary, but not sufficient, for diagnosis of HPPD. For an individual to be diagnosed with HPPD, the symptoms cannot be due to another medical condition.

Is HPPD the Same Thing as Acid Flashbacks?

HPPD may be confused with acid flashbacks. However, HPPD is distinct from acid flashbacks by reason of its relative permanence; while acid flashbacks are brief and fleeting, HPPD is persistent. HPPD is an actual medically recognized mental condition and appears in the DSM-IV (diagnostic code 292.89).

Causes of Hallucinogen Persisting Perception Disorder

The cause(s) of HPPD are not yet known. The most current neurological research indicates that HPPD symptoms may manifest from abnormalities in Central Nervous System function, following hallucinogen use. One theory derived from this research is that the brain inhibitory mechanisms involved with sensory gating, or filtering out excess visual and auditory stimuli, are disrupted therefore allowing more information to be perceived at one time. This results in an overload of the senses.

What HPPD Looks Like

In some cases, HPPD appears to have a sudden onset after a single drug experience, strongly suggesting the drug played a direct role in triggering symptoms. But in other cases, people report gradual worsening of symptoms with ongoing drug use. Drugs that have been associated with HPPD include LSD, MDA, MDMA, psilocybin, mescaline, diphenhydramine, PCP, synthetic cannabis, and high doses of dextromethorphan.

How many people are affected by HPPD?

Some put the number at about 1 in 50,000 hallucinogen users develop HPPD. However, it is possible the prevalence of HPPD has been underestimated by authorities because many people with visual problems relating to drug use either do not seek treatment or, when they do seek treatment, do not admit to having used illicit drugs. Thus, it may be that HPPD occurs more often than is detected by the health care system.

Quick Facts About Hallucinogen Persisting Perception Disorder:

  • People can develop HPPD after only 1 use of a hallucinogenic substance
  • HPPD is most typically caused by the use of LSD
  • About 59% of people with HPPD see geometric patterns on blank surfaces like walls. Almost as many, see false movements of still objects, usually in the peripheral visual fields. Others reports flashes of light, trailing images behind moving objects, and intensified colors
  • Most people with HPPD recover within a month or two after last use, a few take as long as a year

 

Natural Treatments for Hallucinogen Persisting Perception Disorder :

  • Abstinence from using hallucinogens, until the effects from HPPD are gone
  • Valerian Root may help alleviate symptoms. It can be purchased over the counter at most drug stores and health food stores
  • Sun glasses may help alleviate symptoms. Most people with HPPD describe symptom onset or increased intensity of symptoms when they are in bright light and especially when changing from a dark environment to a bright one
  • Meditation, yoga, exercise, breathing techniques and talking about the experience (narrative therapy) with supportive and knowledgeable people may also be helpful

 

 

 

 

 

 

Sources:

www.wikipedia.org

http://www.neurosoup.com

http://www.drugabuse.gov

 

Therapy for co-occuring disorders

Therapy for Co-occuring disorders
Therapy for Co-occuring disorders

Overcoming a drug and alcohol addiction is challenging enough as it is alone but having to do so while also struggling with a mental illness can make the process much more difficult. The condition of having two disorders or substance abuse plus a mental illness is known as co-occurring disorder or dual diagnoses. Co-occurring disorders are complex and the more information you have on them, the better you will be able to help yourself, or someone you know, to get the proper therapy for co-occurring disorders.

There are multiple things you should know about therapy for co-occurring disorders. Here we are going to go through the top ten things you should know about the therapy for co-occurring disorders:

  • Traditional therapy or therapy for addiction won’t do it. Most drug rehab centers are not equipped to handle the psychiatric element of a co-occurring disorder and traditional therapy is not equipped to handle drug addiction. Finding a drug rehab center that specializes in co-occurring disorders would be ideal although most drug rehab centers focus on the drug addiction element of the problem.
  • Therapy for co-occurring disorders must realize that those individuals suffering with dual diagnoses are high-risk individuals. Studies have found that those with a dual diagnosis are more prone to violence and have a high suicide rate.
  • A co-occurring disorder can be made up of a variety of things so the therapy for co-occurring disorders must be able to treat them all. For instance to be classified as having a co-occurring disorder, the individual must have an addiction (alcohol, cocaine, heroin, prescription drugs, etc.) and a mental illness (schizophrenia, anxiety, bipolar disorder, depression etc.) The combinations of these co-occurring disorders are nearly endless.
  • Therapy for co-occurring disorders is important because mental illness often leads into the drug addiction. Those who suffer from bipolar disorder, anxiety or depression often turn to drugs and alcohol to “self-medicate” as a means of dealing with their symptoms.
  • Therapy for co-occurring disorders is more common than you might think. Recent studies have shown that 1 out of every 2 individuals with a mental disorder are also suffering with drug addiction. Integrated therapy for co-occurring disorders is the answer. There is a much
  • Therapy for co-occurring disorders is the answer. There is a much higher success rate for those individuals who receive therapy for co-occurring disorders, as opposed to treating each issue individually.
  • Family members can play an important role in therapy for co-occurring disorders. Those dealing with co-occurring disorders need their family for love and support. By reading all the available information on the subject, and attending support groups and workshops, families will be helping the individual, and themselves, get through this very difficult process.
  • Therapy for co-occurring disorders may take time. Because of the multi-layered nature of co-occurring disorders, recovery may take longer than standard therapy. Individuals and their families need to be patient, and move at their own pace, even if that means taking part in a program lasting several months or a year.
  • Dual Diagnosis drug rehabs have therapy for co-occurring disorders and have specialists in dual diagnosis. So if you’re looking for a drug rehab that has therapy for co-occurring disorders look for one that specializes in dual diagnosis