Some of the best drug addiction treatments are ones that you would not necessarily think are the most effective. This is because there is a clear separation between short term and long term recovery when it comes to overcoming drug addiction and alcoholism.
Most drug addiction treatment centers employ pretty much the same tactics and strategies when it comes to getting people clean and sober. You have a medical detox in which the addict or alcoholic is cleaned out from their drug of choice, and all other drugs, and is medically stabilized. They then will spend anywhere from a few days up to maybe 28 days in residential treatment, where they are in a protected environment where they are not able to use drugs or alcohol. There is no temptation to relapse at this point because the substances are simply not available. There are the typical informative lectures, group therapy, and 12 step meetings that generally go along with residential treatment as well. The drug rehab keeps people busy and tries to educate them about how to live a clean and sober life.
So this is the short term portion of drug addiction and alcohol treatment. You detox the person, clean them out, and keep them safe for a few weeks. You do the best you can to educate them about addiction and recovery. And, you introduce them to 12 step meetings, which can potentially provide a long term solution for some people in terms of having a support system for after they leave treatment.
So what can really go beyond this? How can we increase success rates and encourage addicts to take more action that is necessary to produce sobriety? Aren’t some people simply going to relapse?
The key in most cases is a long term holistic approach. Short term recovery is always the same, as described above. You would not want to change it much because there is no real art to it. Get them clean and get them stable. Keep them away from drugs for a while. No need to mess with this part of the formula, in my opinion.
What needs to happen, though, is that we need an emphasis on holistic growth. So clients need to push themselves to grow in new ways. For example, fitness should be a much bigger part of recovery for just about everyone. It is huge. Anyone can double their chances of staying clean by forming good fitness habits, as this will filter down into increasing their self esteem on a really deep level. This is the type of relapse prevention that produces good long term results.