Meth addiction help
Although recovering from a methamphetamine addiction can be difficult, it is not impossible. Research indicates that recovering from addiction to meth requires longer and more intense outpatient programs than other drug addictions. Why? Because the nature of how meth works in the brain makes the drug highly addictive and physically difficult to quit. In fact, meth stays in the system and can make you feel high for half a day, inducing a feeling of euphoria that is habit forming. Meth addiction help must be very structured and demands frequent contact between the professional treatment providers and recovering addicts.
Where can you get help for meth addiction? What can you expect during the course of treatment? More on finding meth addiction help here, with a section at the end for your questions.
How to help meth addiction
Once a person decides to address addiction to methamphetamines, there are several steps and challenges that await them. In the process of learning how to help meth addiction, you must first address chemical dependence. During meth withdrawal, painful and stressful symptoms can surface. After a period of physical stabilization, an equally challenging stage of psychological treatment addresses thecompulsion to use meth. Finally, follow up treatments and support group involvement help meth addicts to “recover” from drug addiction. Helping meth addiction generally follows three stages:
1. Meth withdrawal help
The initial phase of withdrawal is extremely intense, particularly during the first 24 hours. The intensity of these withdrawal symptoms will decrease over time, but can last up to 2 weeks. The severity of meth withdrawal symptoms will vary depending upon the length of time and the amount of meth used. The longer a person has been using meth and the more dependent upon meth they are, the more severe the withdrawal. Also, the older a person is, the more severe the symptoms of withdrawal tend to be. Other factors that will influence the severity of withdrawal include mental health before and during meth use, the quality of the meth ingested, and the person’s history of drug and alcohol use.
2. Physical stabilization
As the body recovers from acute meth withdrawal, treatment of meth PAWS (post acute withdrawal syndrome) addresses withdrawal symptoms which persist after initial detoxification. Meth PAWS can last anywhere between a couple of weeks to as long as a couple of years. Though less acute, these symptoms such as depression or anxiety canput a recovering meth addict at greater risk; it isduring this phase of recovery when relapse most often occurs.
3. Psychological meth addiction help
In the end, the only way meth addiction treatment can be successful is when physical dependence is complemented with a psychological approach to meth use. Psychotherapy for addiction focuses on how a person thinks, and how that can affect feelings and actions. Talk therapy also helps patients identify and plan for triggers that set off substance abuse. The goal of psychological meth addiction help is for the addict to develop new skills to address meth cravings and prevent relapses. Additionally, alternative coping mechanisms are devised to give the patient positive effects without the negative consequences of drug use. Finally, the recovering addict learns to manage his life more successfully, increase self confidence, and to set positive personal goals.
How to help a meth addict
Meth addiction doesn’t just affect the user. Many times families are ruined by drug addiction. And in most cases, family and friends want to help meth addicts but don’t know how. Here are several great ways to support and assist a meth addict:
- Plan a formal or informal intervention. Present the meth addict with facts, observations, and your point of view. Talk to a professional interventionist for more help.
- Quit enabling. Do not give a meth addict money or allow them to stay in your home. Allow an addict to experience the real consequences of use.
- Seek family therapy. Address possible dysfunction, and become a part of the process. Then, get involved in the treatment of your loved one. Understand that meth addiction can be treated like any other disease.
- Join a family support group like Narc Anon. You’ll meet others who have close family members struggling with substance abuse. Listening and sharing stories can help others overcome negative perceptions regarding substance abuse.
- Become a mentor to a child with a parent abusing meth. You can educate and support as well as provide exposure to positive influences to these children.
Getting help for meth addiction
Medical help for meth addiction is designed to eliminate drug dependence and restore a meth addict to a productive life. Treatment for this kind of addiction is a life-long process. In most cases addict is never completely cured. S/He is referred to as a “recovering” addict. Getting help for meth addiction includes seeking out any or all of the following services:
- identification of addiction
- health care
- psychiatric services
- psychological services social services
- follow-up procedures
But where can you find help for meth addiction?
Perhaps the most difficult step in getting help for meth addiction is the first one. The person literally may not know where to begin. There are actually many resources for an addict to turn to. Friends and family are usually eager supporters of meth addiction treatment. Also, religious organizations or community leaders have programs or know where to direct a person to start their recovery program. Addiction specialists, psychiatrists, psychologists and social workers provide professional help for meth addiction. Inpatient addiction treatment centers offer full-service options from detox to relapse prevention.
Meth addiction helplines
To learn more about meth addiction treatments and programs, get in touch with any of the following federal or non-profit organizations:
The federal Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA)
The American Public Health Association (APHA)
The American Society of Addiction Medicine
The Federal Center for Substance Abuse Treatment (CSAT)
Narcotics Anonymous (NA)
The National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA)
Help with meth addiction questions
You may still have questions regarding meth addiction programs. We welcome those questions and will respond to them as quickly as we can.