12 Step Treatment Meetings

How Does Non 12 Step Treatment Differ From 12 Step Meetings?

Is non-12 step treatment the right choice for you or your loved one? Perhaps you wonder how non 12 step treatment centers could possibly provide you with the ideal treatment to help you stay clean when you relapsed while attending Alcoholics Anonymous (AA) or Narcotics Anonymous (NA).

Learn why your 12 step “treatment” in NA or AA did not work for you. Discover how receiving treatment at a non 12 step treatment facility can potentially guide you towards getting and staying clean.

I do not understand Why AA or NA Treatment Did Not Work

A common misunderstanding exists about 12 step groups such as Narcotics Anonymous (NA) and Alcoholics Anonymous (AA). Both AA and NA are 12 step support groups; however, they provide no actual addiction therapy or any other form of substance abuse rehab or alcohol abuse treatment. Members in 12 step groups receive support from each other and their “sponsor” in 12 step groups but not from professional staff with the training and expertise to provide actual treatment for addiction.

Perhaps it was not necessarily the fact that you received no actual treatment that resulted in your relapse and subsequent dropping out of AA or NA attendance. For some people, following one or more of the 12 steps and being considered a failure if you do not agree is possibly enough to make the addict or alcoholic not want to return to another meeting. The same is potentially true if an individual fails to progress to the next step in a rehab program utilizing the 12 steps. In a non 12 step treatment program, there is no shaming or labeling anyone a failure.

How Can Non 12 Step Treatment Help Me?

Lance M. Dodes, M.D., explains, “The overall success rate for AA turns out to be between 5 and 10%…” A non 12 step treatment program provides actual comprehensive treatment based on your individual needs. How do non 12 step treatment programs determine your “individual needs?” You have a thorough initial assessment with a highly qualified professional. You do not just walk in to the facility and sit down in a group meeting for an hour once or twice a week like in some 12 step meetings or programs. You do not “work the 12 step program.”

Non 12 step treatment programs give you the structured, comprehensive and ongoing treatment needed to guide you along your path to getting clean and staying clean from the alcohol or other drugs that took you down the path to addiction. If you relapse, you are not considered a failure. The expert staff in non 12 step treatment facilities have the knowledge, training and experience to help those who relapse get back on track in their recovery process.

One major attribute of non 12 step treatment is the comprehensive services provided. The Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) explains that 12 step facilitation “seeks to guide and support engagement in 12-step programs such as Alcoholics Anonymous or Narcotics Anonymous.” On the other hand, in non 12 step treatment, you may receive treatment that includes other services described by SAMHSA, including:

  • Cognitive behavioral therapy
  • Motivational enhancement therapy
  • Contingency management therapy
  • Medication assisted therapy

Are There Other Benefits of Non 12 Step Treatment?

In addition to cognitive behavioral therapy, medication assisted therapy and other common approaches to treatment, individual and group counseling sessions provide additional support.

Perhaps you need detox services before entering into a non 12 step treatment program. Our partners can assist with your detox needs. When you complete detox, you receive the comprehensive assessment provided to every individual entering into treatment.

Once you receive your assessment, you receive the guidance and support you need on an ongoing basis, throughout your recovery. You do not have to worry about being labeled a failure because you do not progress as fast as the next person does. In fact, in a non 12 step program, your treatment plan is not the same as the next person. Your treatment plan, based on your specific needs, describes your treatment plan goals and helps you work towards the goals of your individualized treatment plan as you recover from the despair of addiction.

The The Treatment Specialist – Addiction Helplines team provides assistance to those suffering from addiction and dual diagnosis conditions find a treatment program that fits their specific needs. The The Treatment Specialist – Addiction Helplines team will provide a free confidential assessment and insurance verification. For more information on treatment programs for yourself or a loved one, contact the Inspiration helpline at (877) 228-3270.

abusing alcohol and drugs

Do Non 12 Step Rehab Programs Actually Help Addicts Like Me?

A non 12 step addiction recovery program has the potential to provide you with the tools and guidance that you or a loved one needs to stop abusing alcohol or other drugs and to stay clean and sober. Learn how non 12 step rehab programs can potentially succeed where 12 step meetings fail. Learn how to get started on your way to recovery through the benefits provided by non 12 step treatment.

What is a non 12 step treatment program?

Non 12 step treatment does not focus on the “Big Book” commonly used in Alcoholics Anonymous and other 12 step programs. In fact, Alcoholics Anonymous is not treatment, but rather peer support, like other 12 step-based groups such as Narcotics Anonymous (NA). Many treatment programs also follow the 12 step approach.

In a 12 step approach, you “work the program.” You turn your life over to your “Higher power” and rely on your sponsor for support. In a non 12 step treatment program, you rely on the expertise of highly trained treatment professionals for guidance and support, not an untrained individual without formal education and expertise in addiction, other than their own personal addiction experiences.

Non 12 step rehab is a highly individualized recovery process, providing a wide range of treatment services, compared to 12 step meetings and programs that rely on the 12 step approach.

Are There Issues with the 12 Step Approach?

One issue with 12 step programming is the narrow approach. Dr. George Koob, Ph.D., said in a National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism (NIAAA) press release that popular concepts regarding treatment “Is often limited to knowledge of 28-day inpatient rehab or 12-step programs” and that “There are diverse treatment options of which people may be less aware.” He further explained that alternatives often provide minimal disruption to home life.

Dr. Koob’s assertions of alternative treatment methods rings true of the non 12 step approach. While you receive comprehensive non 12 step treatment, you still maintain contact with family. In fact, family members often become an important component of treatment, an aspect likely impossible with short-term treatment programs described by the NIAAA director.

Another issue is the short-term approach described by Dr. Koob. Simply attending meetings or a short stint in a 12 step program may not benefit some individuals. The National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA) suggests, “Because successful outcomes often depend on a person’s staying in treatment long enough to reap its full benefits, strategies for keeping people in treatment are critical.”

What Kind of Treatment Outcome Can I Expect in Non 12 Step Treatment?

The outcome of your treatment in a non 12 step program depends on a number of individualized factors. NIDA explains, “Individual treatment outcomes depend on the extent and nature of the patient’s problems, the appropriateness of treatment and related services used to address those problems, and the quality of interaction between the patient and his or her treatment providers.” When you actively participate in the treatment process, you will likely experience more successful recovery.

Even if you relapsed in the past, that does not mean there is no hope for you to successfully complete non 12 step treatment. Relapse occurs more often than people sometimes think. NIDA points out “Relapse rates for addiction resemble those of other chronic diseases such as diabetes, hypertension, and asthma.”

It is imperative to realize that motivation is critical in recovery. Giving non 12 step treatment a chance to work for you is a big step towards understanding that yes, a non 12 step approach to rehab really can help an addict like you.

The The Treatment Specialist – Addiction Helplines team provides assistance to those suffering from addiction and dual diagnosis conditions find a treatment program that fits their specific needs. The The Treatment Specialist – Addiction Helplines team will provide a free confidential assessment and insurance verification. For more information on treatment programs for yourself or a loved one, contact the Inspiration helpline at (877) 228-3270.

Anxiety Disorders and Substance Abuse

What You Need to Know About Anxiety’s Impact on Addiction

Anxiety is a normal part of life. Everyone experiences anxiety, which reflects a person’s response to stressors, such as work, school, or family. However, anxiety can grow and and lead to addiction which can dramatically interfere with a person’s responsibilities and life. Addiction worsen anxiety, reports the National Institute on Mental Health {NIMH), and those with anxiety disorders need to understand why this happens.

Prevalence of Anxiety Disorders and Addiction.

Anxiety disorders affect 18.1 percent of all adults, and up to 22.8 percent of those with an anxiety disorder suffer from a severe anxiety disorder, asserts the NIMH. Yet, those with anxiety disorders, which include mild to severe cases, are up to twice as likely to abuse drugs or alcohol, reports the National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA). According to the Anxiety and Depression Association of America, up to 20 percent of US adults with anxiety also suffer from alcohol abuse or substance abuse disorder.

Someone who abuse drugs or alcohol is twice as likely to suffer from an anxiety disorder. When someone abuses drugs or alcohol and suffers from a co-occurring condition, the resulting diagnosis is referred to as a dual diagnosis or comorbidity. Since substance or alcohol abuse increases the likelihood of suffering from an anxiety disorder, someone with an addiction may need to receive treatment in a specialized center for dual diagnoses, such as non 12 step rehabs.

Coping With Anxiety.

The signs and symptoms of anxiety can be life-altering and result in a withdrawal from routine activities. Although many different types of anxiety disorders exist, similar symptoms may include the following:

  • Restlessness.
  • Sleep problems.
  • Irritability.
  • Difficulty concentrating.
  • Intense worry or fear.

As a result of these common symptoms, some may turn to drugs or alcohol in an attempt to gain control of their feelings and thoughts. Unfortunately, today’s culture of overstressing and instant gratification has further contributed to a false belief in the ability of illicit drugs and alcohol to correct anxiety.

Substance-Induced Anxiety.

Occasionally, society forgets alcohol abuse is actually a type of substance abuse. The legality of alcohol is not a pass to assume alcohol is a safer alternative. According to the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism (NIAAA), heavy alcohol abuse or substance abuse impacts brain function by changing how neurotransmitters (chemicals of the brain) move between neurons. As a result, substance abuse or alcoholism can actually manifest with a “broad range of psychiatric symptoms and signs.” Essentially, alcohol abuse or substance abuse may directly lead to anxiety and mood disorders.

Researchers have further linked alcohol to unusual, antisocial, and aggressive behaviors, which may mirror the signs of anxiety disorders. Unfortunately, this makes receiving an accurate diagnosis more difficult. Therefore, many of those with anxiety disorders who report the use of drugs or alcohol, regardless of how much of a substance was abused or how often, must receive a comprehensive evaluation at the time of treatment. For example, the professionals of non 12 step rehab programs will review if a person has engaged in any form of substance abuse, which includes the abuse of drugs, alcohol, or synthetic substances. Staff then evaluates a person’s mental state and determines the best course of treatment, which may include medication treatment for addiction and any co-occurring mental health disorders, psychotherapy, and continued outpatient treatment.

Alcohol or drug abuse can cause anxiety directly by changes to the brain or indirectly through problems that arise from the influence of drugs or alcohol, such as drinking and driving. By understanding how anxiety worsens alcoholism and substance abuse and vice versa, those with addiction or mental health disorders can learn to recognize their symptoms and get help before reaching a point of crisis.

The The Treatment Specialist – Addiction Helplines team provides assistance to those suffering from addiction and dual diagnosis conditions find a treatment program that fits their specific needs. The The Treatment Specialist – Addiction Helplines team will provide a free confidential assessment and insurance verification. For more information on treatment programs for yourself or a loved one, contact the Inspiration helpline at (877) 228-3270.

Synthetic Cannabinoids

The Dangers of Synthetic Cannabinoids

Synthetic drugs have grown in popularity in recent years due to a perceived safety about their use. In reality, synthetic drugs can be much costlier than actual drug come in and synthetics are addictive. Unfortunately, most people consider synthetic cannabinoids safe due to their but synthetic cannabinoids are often labeled as not for human consumption, and those who are using synthetic cannabinoids or who may suspect the use of the substances in family members or friends need to how they affect the body, why they are considered to be an alternative to real drugs, and what side effects exist when consumed.

Prevalence of Synthetic Cannabinoids

Synthetic cannabinoid-related deaths tripled in 2015, and the expectations for 2016 are not much better, reports the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). Synthetic cannabinoids are often much more powerful than marijuana or other illicit drugs. Furthermore, synthetic cannabinoids are typically made by spraying man-made chemicals on some form of plant matter. In some cases, this plant matter alone may induce hallucinogenic effects or the otherwise unsafe for ingestion period when the matter is sprayed with a synthetic cannabinoid-substance, the effects can be even more potent.

As a result, the FDA has outlawed specific synthetic cannabinoid substances, but synthetic cannabinoid manufacturers have overstepped the ability of the FDA to limit this trend by simply changing the formulation for each. In other words, not a single disposition over placement of a small ingredients will evade the FDA scratched. Furthermore, many synthetic cannabinoids may be manufactured overseas and those who are purchasing in the US have another problem.

What Is the Hidden Danger of Using Synthetic Cannabinoids?

Since synthetic cannabinoids represent a major portion of the synthetic drug industry, those who are abusing these substances need to know more about them. When a synthetic substance is sprayed onto the respective plant matter, the actual strength and amount of each can vary greatly from that’s too bad. This leads to the increased risk of accidental overdose from the substances, and researchers have yet to Define how much does a this may affect the human body. However, the immediate side effects include the following:

  • Nausea.
  • The vomiting.
  • Hallucinations.
  • Paranoia.
  • Seizures.
  • Delusions. New lines heart arrhythmias.
  • Increased respiratory rate.
  • Increased blood pressure. New lines insomnia.
  • Aggression.

Additionally, this list of side effects is not comprehensive, which means the side effects from each different formulation of synthetic cannabinoids can vary greatly. Well, one batch may have minimal side effects on the human body, the next batch could easily result in a cardiovascular event, such as a stroke or heart attacks common or another dosage of synthetic cannabinoids could actually interact with human medications.

What About Taking Medications and Consuming Synthetic Cannabinoids?

Human medications are studied extensively for their interactions with other medications, and researchers have also studied the interactive effects of medications with some herbal supplements. However, the continually changing nature make such studies nearly impossible. As a result, those who are currently taking medication for the treatment of medical or mental illnesses could suffer a severe adverse reaction from consuming synthetic cannabinoids at the same time as taking prescription medications. When withdrawing from synthetic cannabinoids, medical supervision may be necessary, such as through non 12-step rehab centers, to ensure other medications do not interact with traces in the body.

Unfortunately, the synthetic drug market appears to be growing. In Florida, the incidence of synthetic cannabinoids has grown significantly, but many people consider synthetic cannabinoids to be a safe alternative to smoking marijuana or consuming edibles. However, those who have consumed synthetic cannabinoids or who know of others who are doing so need to understand what they can do, why they are being abused, and what it could mean for the treatment of co-occurring mental health and medical illnesses through non 12-step recovery programs.

The The Treatment Specialist – Addiction Helplines team provides assistance to those suffering from addiction and dual diagnosis conditions find a treatment program that fits their specific needs. The The Treatment Specialist – Addiction Helplines team will provide a free confidential assessment and insurance verification. For more information on treatment programs for yourself or a loved one, contact the Inspiration helpline at (877) 228-3270.

Teen Substance Abuse

The Dangers of Synthetic Cathinones in Teens

“Bath salts” have made national news in recent years due to their highly unusual – inducing components. The term, “bath salts,” is given to synthetics for their close resemblance to bath salts that are used during bathing, such as Epsom salts. Unfortunately, synthetic cathinones are commonly sold over the counter as plant food, electronic device cleaners, jewelry cleaners, or carpet deodorizer. Although these substances are often labeled as “not for human consumption,” their actual purpose is to be taken and induce mind-altering effects. The drug is meant to mimic the effects of stimulant-like substances, such as methamphetamines and cocaine, which has further strengthened the belief in their “safe qualities.” However, synthetics are not a safe alternative to illicit drug abuse

What Are Synthetic Cathinones?

Synthetic cathinones are man-made drugs that are similar to a stimulant found in the khat plant, cathinone. According to the National Institute on Drug Abuse, synthetic cathinones are classified as a new psychoactive substance. Unfortunately, synthetic cathinones cannot be regulated by the federal government, especially as manufacturers continually reformulate the chemical composition of each back. Essentially, lawmakers cannot make all cousins is illegal, and when lawmakers identify a specific composition as illegal, manufactures alter the composition. Some of the common names for synthetics include the following:

  • Flakka.
  • Bloom.
  • Vanilla Sky.
  • Scarface.
  • Lunar wave.
  • Cloud Nine.
  • “Molly.”

Effects of Synthetic Cathinones

Synthetic cathinones are widely available, but these substances may induce serious health effects. Synthetic cathinones are reported to cause a variety of immediate side effects, which include the following:

  • Reduced inhibitions, which may apply to use of other illicit substances, engaging in Risky sexual activities, or operating Machinery while under the influence of the synthetic cathinones.
  • Anxiety and nervousness.
  • Depression.
  • Side effects that are similar to, if not identical, to the consumption of amphetamines and cocaine, such as increased heart rate, respiratory rate, and blood pressure.

In fact, some evidence, reports the National Institute on Drug Abuse, suggests synthetic cathinones are 10X more powerful than cocaine. Additional side effects of synthetic cathinones include the following:

  • Extreme paranoia, which may include unreasonable distrust or thoughts about others.
  • Auditory, visual, or tactile hallucinations.
  • Increased social awareness.
  • Increased sexual urgency and drive.
  • Extreme agitation and anxiety, which may result in unexplained panic attacks.
  • Delirium.
  • Unusual outbursts of violence or agitation.

Additional side effects of synthetic cathinones depend on how the drug was ingested.
For example, those who snort the substances may be prone to frequent, profuse nosebleeds, touching, or nausea. In some cases, the use has been linked to increased osteoclast activity, which refers to the breakdown of skeletal muscle tissue, and kidney failure. Most importantly, intoxication has been directly linked to death, and the majority of these cases are the result of injection or snorting of the substance.

Treatment of Synthetic Cathinone Abuse

Unlike many other illicit substances, there are no FDA-approved medications to treat addiction to synthetic cathinones. however, medications can be used to manage withdrawal symptoms during detox period most treatments for addiction to are based on types of behavioral therapy. Some of these therapies include the following:

  • Cognitive-behavioral therapy
  • Motivational enhancement therapy.
  • Contingency management.
  • Behavioral treatment for teens, such as multidimensional family therapy.

As a result, those who have been involved with treatment for drug abuse or teen alcohol abuse non 12-step treatment programs must not turn to synthetic cathinones as a means of maintaining sobriety. This could result in a much worse outcome than simply relapse.

Synthetic cathinones are one of the latest designer drugs, and although originally created to mimic minimally-psychoactive properties of the khat plant are much more powerful, dangerous, and addictive. Since previous abuse of other drugs or alcohol is a risk factor for the abuse, teen substance abuse non 12-step treatment programs can help with preventative and post-exposure treatment measures. Until these drugs fall into the history books, everyone needs to understand how they are much more harmful than perceived.

The The Treatment Specialist – Addiction Helplines team provides assistance to those suffering from addiction and dual diagnosis conditions find a treatment program that fits their specific needs. The The Treatment Specialist – Addiction Helplines team will provide a free confidential assessment and insurance verification. For more information on treatment programs for yourself or a loved one, contact the Inspiration helpline at (877) 228-3270.

addiction treatment

Benefits of Holistic Addiction Treatment

With so many medications with harmful side effects and the outbreaks of certain medical conditions that have been linked to the chemicals people introduce to their bodies on a regular basis, people are looking toward alternative treatments. This is even the case with those suffering from a drug or alcohol dependency. Holistic addiction treatment is now available, and holistic inpatient treatment centers are becoming increasingly more popular for that reason.

1. No More Addiction to Another Drug

Sometimes, addiction treatment centers prescribe a drug maintenance program that isn’t always effective. Not to mention, the drugs prescribed aren’t 100-percent safe. Like all medications, you’re introducing a foreign substance that your body may react negatively to. For a person who is already sick from withdrawal and just suffering through cravings and other symptoms, risking a bad reaction to a drug like suboxone or methadone isn’t always the best idea. The drugs themselves can cause a dependency. The person will need to slowly wean from them to prevent going through withdrawal again. Suboxone is less risky than methadone, but it isn’t completely safe. It’s not as common to become addicted to it, but it’s a possibility. With a treatment consisting of a medication, the person will still need a substance on a regular to prevent withdrawal symptoms.

2. Higher Success Levels

One of the main reason people are beginning to look for holistic drug treatment centers is because of how many people are raving about their success. And it’s not just the initial process of getting off of the drug or alcohol either. Holistic alcohol treatment centers and other holistic addiction treatment programs have a higher success rate of people who live the rest of their lives substance free than the success rates of traditional drug and alcohol addiction programs. When people look for a center, they want to be reassured that most people live substance free not just for the first month or so when withdrawal is such a problem but years done the road when they’re no longer in a residential facility.

3. Focus on Life-Long Methods for Recovery

One reason for the high success rate is that people learn how to live without the alcohol or drugs rather than just helping them get through detoxing. They learn how to cope through ways that can be utilized outside of the facility. The person learns how to deal with temptation as well as alternative treatments that can be used to release stress or focus on something besides substances. At holistic drug treatment centers, patients aren’t just given resources for them to use while living at the residential facility. The person is able to find yoga or other forms of therapy that are available in the community.

4. Positive Lifestyle Changes for Life Outside of the Facility

In a holistic addiction treatment facility, patients learn about activities and treatment methods that aren’t just useful when it comes to coping and overcoming addiction. They learn ways to change their lives completely and not just in regards to their addiction. They may find that what they learn is applicable in everyday life. They learn new ways to approach situations and live life. These lessons in healthy living benefit their overall health in many aspects.

5. Full Body Recovery

Holistic medicine’s focal point is on the entire body as opposed to modern medicine. Modern medicine tends to treat the symptoms rather than the actual problem. Holistic medicine delves deep and not only helps with the symptoms but actually assists in treating the underlying problem and the person as a whole. The detoxification process happens on a cellular level with holistic treatment.

6. Builds a Solid Foundation

A house’s foundation is the structure that every other portion of the house depends on. Holistic methods of treatment act as the foundation for recovery. They provide for a strong starting point that all other aspects of the treatment can rely on.

When looking at the many different substance abuse treatment programs out there, it’s important to think about long-term goals rather than a quick fix. While traditional programs ease the initial withdrawal process, they don’t always work in the long run. Patients who look into a holistic addiction treatment program may find that the success rate along with how it affects other parts of their lives aligns better with what they’re looking for in a treatment facility.

The The Treatment Specialist – Addiction Helplines team provides assistance to those suffering from addiction and dual diagnosis conditions find a treatment program that fits their specific needs.  The The Treatment Specialist – Addiction Helplines team will provide a free confidential assessment and insurance verification.  For more information on treatment programs for yourself or a loved one, contact the Inspiration helpline at (877) 228-3270.

The Role of Environment in Contributing to and Managing Addiction

For those with alcohol dependence or substance abuse issues, addiction causes changes in the metabolism and basic functioning of the brain, asserts the National Institute on Drug Abuse. Additionally, the incidence of other related health problems grows, and treatment often becomes the only course of action. However, understanding the role of environment in managing addiction is crucial to preventing, stopping, and recovering during treatment, including teen alcohol abuse 12-step treatment and teen substance abuse 12-step treatment, programs.

Environment and Increased Risk For Addiction

Seven risk factors exist for addiction, according to the Mayo Clinic, which include the following:

  • Having a family history of addiction.
  • Being male.
  • Suffering from another mental health disorder.
  • Dealing with peer pressure.
  • Lack of family presence in environment or life.
  • Experiencing anxiety, depression, or loneliness.
  • Consuming a highly addictive drug, such as cocaine, prescription painkillers, or stimulants.

Each of these risk factors shares a common aspect: they each involve the role of environment. A family history means a person will probably be around family members who abuse drugs or alcohol. Being male is likely to cause a person to want to demonstrate “masculinity,” and dealing with peer pressure is a direct cause of being in an environment with peers who want a person to do or engage in a certain activity. Unfortunately, each risk factor further increases the chances of developing an addiction, and those with a personal history or drug or alcohol abuse need to understand how these factors may worsen addiction.

Environment and Worsening Addiction

Addiction is a description of how the body grows to depend on the presence of a substance to function in a “average” setting, explains Healthline. Unfortunately, another facet of dependence focuses on how dependence grows in synchronicity with tolerance. Essentially, higher levels of the drug or alcohol tend to warrant increased doses of the given substance or alcohol in order to achieve the same “euphoric” effect. When a person already has one addiction, the chances of switching substances to a stronger, more powerful drug increase. As a result, those with an addiction need to avoid situations where drug use may be occurring or promoted.

Connecting Dual Diagnoses and Environment

In a sense, a dual diagnosis may be considered an environmental factor. Those with dual diagnoses may be prone to making poor decisions or engaging in non-holistic, non-therapeutic environments for the co-occurring conditions. Dual diagnosis patients may also view substance or alcohol abuse as a means of coping with the stress of having such diagnoses, asserts the National Alliance on Mental Health. However, each compounding diagnosis only grows worse with drug or alcohol abuse, and treatment for dual diagnosis must focus on removing a person from the ill-suited environment.

Environment During Treatment and Recovery

Treatment for addiction often starts with inpatient hospitalization, especially if a person is experiencing suicidal or homicidal thoughts. Inpatient treatment is a direct change in environment, which may be required via a court order in some cases, to prevent a person from gaining access to drugs or alcohol.

In cases of severe alcoholism, inpatient treatment starts with detox, and not completing detox under medical supervision can be deadly, asserts the Mayo Clinic. Although detox from other drugs may not be as life-threatening, some drugs, such as amphetamines, can cause heart arrhythmias or other cardiac events during detox. However, medications can lessen these withdrawal symptoms and reduce their risk.

As treatment progresses, a person must be away from environments that have contributed to drug or alcohol abuse. Behavioral therapies, a key part of successful treatment, may be used to help a person learn how to respond to addiction-contributing environments. For example, a person may learn through behavioral therapies about ways to avoid “giving in” to peer pressure. After inpatient treatment, a person may continue treatment through outpatient behavioral treatment settings, long-term residential treatment settings, or in other safe environments, explains the National Institute on Drug Abuse.

There are many different risk factors for addiction. However, the environment remains one of the largest influences in addiction. Those who may be suffering from an addiction or know of someone with an addiction need to understand the role of environment in the development and successful treatment of substance and alcohol abuse.

The The Treatment Specialist – Addiction Helplines team provides assistance to those suffering from addiction and dual diagnosis conditions find a treatment program that fits their specific needs.  The The Treatment Specialist – Addiction Helplines team will provide a free confidential assessment and insurance verification.  For more information on treatment programs for yourself or a loved one, contact the Inspiration helpline at (877) 228-3270.

alcohol addiction

Alcohol Addiction with 12 Step

Perhaps you heard about 12 step programs and decided to finally seek help for your alcohol addiction. After all, trying to recover on your own just did not work out, even though you tried to quit drinking several times in the past. Receiving addiction recovery with 12 step program treatment became the answer for countless numbers of people over the years, since the publication of the first edition of the “Big Book,” in 1939.

Learn How Others Benefit from Alcohol Addiction Recovery with 12 Step

Research demonstrates that a variety of treatment services proved successful over the past few decades. According to a report published by the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism (NIAAA), “The peer-led, voluntary fellowship known as Alcoholics Anonymous (AA) continues to be the most widely accessed resource for people with alcohol problems.”

Research also shows that addiction recovery with 12 step programs are often more accessible for many individuals suffering from alcohol abuse or addiction. When searching for treatment for alcohol abuse, the alcoholic or their loved ones often find other types of treatment programs inaccessible. Perhaps there is a long waiting list or maybe you just decide that a particular type of treatment does not meet your needs.

Another feature that may draw some alcoholics to participate in and do very well in their 12 step alcohol addiction recovery program is the fact that, as stated by the National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA), 12 step facilitation is an “active engagement” strategy, meaning that members actively engage with each other. You learn you are not alone and that others have the same or similar experiences as you in battling their alcohol addiction.

Will a 12 Step Program for Alcohol Addiction Help Me?

In Chapter 5 of the Big Book, the first sentence indicates it is rare that a person fails “who has thoroughly followed our path.” The first step of a 12 step program for alcohol addiction requires admitting that you have a problem. If you were not ready to admit you have a problem, you would not seek out a 12 step program for alcohol recovery. You admit that you lost control and cannot stop on your own. So yes, even people like you benefit from 12 step programs and have the potential to recover, to successfully work your program while in 12 step facilitation therapy and after you leave treatment.

Does my Co-occurring Mental Health Disorder Exclude Me from 12 Step?

The Sonoma County AA points to some of the myths and accusations made when an individual in 12 step has a co-occurring disorder, including:

  • If you take medications you are not sober
  • If you suffer from depression, you suffer from untreated alcoholism
  • All the answers are in the Big Book; you do not need any other help

The article states, “All of these statements are opposed to AA’s principles.” Many people continue other types of treatment when participating in the 12 step process and successfully working their program.

Can I Just Attend Meetings?

While Alcoholics Anonymous meetings offer exceptional support for members, it is not a treatment program. Successful completion of a 12 step-oriented alcohol treatment program, along with aftercare, likely offers you the best chance of abstinence and continued sobriety once you return home. When attending meetings in your hometown, without actual treatment, you run a high risk of relapsing. You are too close to those tempting old people, old places, and old things.

Additionally, in “Outcome Research on 12-Step and Other Self-Help Programs,” researchers discovered that when individuals participate in both treatment and 12 step groups, “these two sources of help appear to strengthen or bolster each other.” Those remaining in treatment longer also demonstrated more long-term success, remaining active in AA much longer than individuals only attending meetings.

How do I get started?

Committing to ending your lifestyle of alcohol abuse and entering into 12-step treatment takes a simple first action. Make the call. When you call to get information and arrange for your treatment, you are treated with dignity and respect. Understanding staff can talk you through the process to start your journey to a better lifestyle with the help of services offered through 12-step treatment.

The The Treatment Specialist – Addiction Helplines team provides assistance to those suffering from addiction and dual diagnosis conditions find a treatment program that fits their specific needs.  The The Treatment Specialist – Addiction Helplines team will provide a free confidential assessment and insurance verification.  For more information on treatment programs for yourself or a loved one, contact the Inspiration helpline at (877) 854-7515.