Alternative Drug Rehab Treatment Methods: Are They Effective?

Saturday, January 5, 2019

     For many decades, drug addiction patients underwent an intensive treatment program that incorporated drug detox and rehabilitation to help manage the addiction. However, over the last few decades, there has been a trend that has quickly gained traction in the healthcare industry. 

     This trend is the use of alternative treatment methods in drug rehab treatment. Unlike the conventional program, alternative techniques utilize different approaches to drug addiction and therapy.

Alternative Drug Rehab Treatment Methods: Are They Effective?
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Some of the alternative drug rehab treatment methods that are available today include the following:
  • Mediation and mindfulness practices
  • Herbal medicines
  • Yoga
  • Exercise
  • Nutritional therapy
  • Acupuncture and acupressure
  • Biofeedback and neurofeedback

     All these techniques take different approaches to addiction recovery, and their aim is to manage the addiction and promote sobriety. However, before choosing them over traditional techniques, one should ask: Are they effective? Can they lead to long-term sobriety? 

     Here is a quick overview of the alternative drug rehab treatments methods in a bid to establish their effectiveness in promoting recovery.
Are Alternative Methods Effective?

     As aforementioned, there are numerous alternative drug rehab treatments. Some use nutrition to help pull the body back from the addiction. Others utilize meditation and mindfulness practices to cultivate different thought processes and promote recovery. Are these methods effective?

     For a drug rehab treatment to be effective, it has to follow a basic outline. Procedures that don’t meet the minimum requirements of a treatment program may not be effective in treating addiction. They may produce results in the short-term, but these results may not last long. It becomes easy for addiction patients to relapse.

Requirements for a Drug Rehab Treatment

     Treatment has to meet the following basic outline for it to produce holistic, long-term results in a drug addiction patient:

Detoxification
     
     The treatment has to include a detox plan to rid the body of all the toxins accumulated from the drugs. Detoxification must be done under the supervision of a healthcare professional.

Personalized Evaluation

     A personalized evaluation is necessary to establish the physical, emotional, and mental state of the patient. Some individuals who abuse drugs have underlying disorders such as depression, schizophrenia, and bipolar disorder. If these problems aren’t addressed, the treatment won’t provide long-term results.

Symptoms Management

    Detox plans come with withdrawal symptoms, and there has to be a program in place to manage the symptoms. Usually, withdrawal symptoms are treated with the use of medication, especially if they are life-threatening. 

Counseling
     
     After undergoing the above steps, an individual should undergo counseling. The counseling sessions are meant to produce positive thought patterns that will inform behavior and discourage drug abuse. After the initial counseling, one should enroll for private or group therapy throughout the recovery period.

Addiction Aftercare

     Aftercare is necessary to help an addiction patient from relapsing. It can be in the form of support groups or therapy. Aftercare also involves healthy practices such as healthy eating, exercise, and other alternative solutions which may help promote physical and emotional wellbeing.

     Alternative treatments that do not incorporate these steps may not be adequate to help a drug addiction patient. For example, if one chooses a yoga or meditation program, they should also make sure that they undergo a detox, professional management of withdrawal symptoms, and counseling. If they don’t, meditation alone will not help the body recover from drug abuse. Therefore, individuals should be careful when selecting the right drug rehab treatment for them or their loved ones.

Final Thoughts

    Alternative drug rehab treatments are effective in promoting addiction recovery, but their effectiveness is subject to whether they incorporate the basic treatment outline. In most cases, these alternative solutions are most effective when used together with traditional treatment methods. Before settling for a program, make sure that it helps the patient to get rid of toxins and manage the symptoms of drug abuse and underlying mental health conditions. The treatment plan should also incorporate continued therapy and aftercare to promote positive behavioral changes that will produce long-term results.

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