Fundamentals of Drug and Alcohol Rehabilitation

Fundamentals of Drug and Alcohol Rehabilitation


The key to drug and alcohol rehabilitation is in changing your life after going through the detoxification process.  It is obviously not enough to simply stop using the drugs and alcohol, but something further must occur in order to find real change.  The addict or the alcoholic is stuck in a cycle whereby they continuously return to their drug of choice, even after a short period of sanity and abstinence.  The inability to moderate their intake or resist the first drug is what characterizes the problem.  Addiction is a tricky thing to deal with.

Therefore, the best alcohol drug rehabilitation comes in the form of serious, long term lifestyle changes. Traditional therapy is almost always 12 step programs, characterized by meeting attendance and working the steps with a sponsor.  This works for some but fails for the large majority.  But even those who are successful in 12 step programs are typically making long term lifestyle changes and taking positive action on a regular basis.  They are forming healthy new habits and creating a new life of their own making.  This goes beyond living a passive recovery and simply avoiding their drug of choice.

within temptation-mother earth
Creative Commons License photo credit: cok666

Part of the problem with traditional drug rehabilitation is that eventually you will always be tempted. It may not happen today or even this month but eventually you will be in a situation where you are faced with your drug of choice and the opportunity to use it in complete secrecy.  No one would ever know that you took a little bit of it.  This is the moment of truth and this is what alcohol and drug rehabilitation is attempting to prevent.  This moment of potential relapse where you could use your drug and “get away with it.”  Of course in the end you would be sent on a wild relapse if you indulged and that is the whole point.  But you have to be strong enough to resist that first drug in a special moment like this, and the 12 step program argues that the only protection in this instance must come from your higher power.  It must come from God.

Call it what you want, but an important part of passing this critical moment is your level of healthy self esteem.  This is part of the God connection and may be one and the same.  If you feel good about yourself and your life and the people you help every day, then you are much less likely to take that drug.  Your level of self esteem is protection against relapse.  Thus, you must create a new life for yourself that is positive enough to build healthy self esteem.