Should I Seek Help for Alcohol or Drug Use?
By Zach Ludwig, LPC-MHSP
Deciding to seek help with substance use issues for yourself or a loved one is difficult. Denial, rationalization, and avoidance mark the disease of addiction. Due to the insidiousness of chronic substance use, it can be hard to recognize the compounding issues…until the problem has seemingly formed into a mountain. This issue has become more problematic during the isolation of quarantine.
What to Ask When You Seek Help
Many people might begin their search about recovery and treatment with the question “Do I have a problem?” or “Does my loved one have a problem?” Everyone’s story is different, but there are some common themes to watch out for:
- Are you or your loved one consuming drugs/alcohol in larger amounts or more frequently than in the past? Is the larger amount consumed because more is needed to get the same effect than was achieved from less in the past?
- Has there been an attempt to stop before (either alone or with help) that was unsuccessful?
- Is there a strong craving (desire) to take drugs or drink alcohol?
- Have important areas of life been negatively impacted or abandoned, such as education, employment, finances, home duties, or relationships?
- Is there a lot of time spent in the pursuit/use of or time recovering from the use of drugs/alcohol?
- Are drugs/alcohol being consumed despite it being hazardous or potentially hazardous (i.e. health status made worse by the use, driving under the influence, using in safety-sensitive surroundings)?
- Are there negative reactions when/if drugs/alcohol is suddenly stopped (such as shakes, vomiting, diarrhea, headache, blurred vision, sleep disturbances, agitation, seizures)?
Any of these consequences to drinking or using drugs could be clinically significant, and further evaluation may be indicated. Bradford Health Services provides FREE private consultations. These allow further discussion on what options, including treatment, may benefit you or your family.
Finding the Correct Treatment
Determining if treatment is indicated is individualized based on medical and clinical criteria. If treatment is recommended, Bradford Health Services offers an array of interventions. These interventions fall along a continuum of care model to match the treatment needs of the individual. Levels of care can include (but not limited to):
- Detoxification: A medically managed, short-term intervention to move someone comfortably through withdrawals from drugs/alcohol. This is often the first step of treatment and recovery. It is a time to focus on physical wellness and health, creating a foundation to begin emotion-focused and interpersonal work.
- Residential: Structured services are provided in a safe, drug-free environment where each person receives interventions delivered by an interdisciplinary team, including doctors, nurses, clinicians, and other specialists. Residential treatment provides each person an opportunity to work on centering themselves and establishing coping and recovery skills for the long term.
- Outpatient Services: A range of programs often available in the community someone lives in after leaving residential services. The intensity and duration of the services vary and will change based on the recovery needs and progress of the individual. Outpatient services provide a great opportunity for people to still be rooted in treatment while incorporating other obligations such as school, work, and family roles.
Look to the Future
We recognize that making changes is a process. Part of that process includes exploring needs and goals by discussing what a personalized recovery plan could look like. When someone has reached the point of seeking help, that process should be as simple as possible. Bradford Health Services is there for you and your family and can be reached in several ways, including:
- Our website, bradfordhealth.com, where you will find information about our programs, locations, and admission process.
- Live Chat with one of our Treatment Guide Representatives is available to address your questions about our programs or admission process through our website.
By calling 888-577-0012, you can speak with a live person 24/7 who can assist in providing or scheduling a FREE, live in-person or over-the-phone consultation. Seek help for your addiction today.