Drug Counselling Programs
Which ever drug rehab or drug counselling program you choose, the road to sobriety is filled with both physiological and psychological barriers, which must be overcome to prevent relapse. Whilst many people think of drug addiction as a largely physiological affair, physical addiction is only half of the picture. Drug counselling focuses on the psychological aspects of drug addiction, including the beliefs and circumstances which lead people to drugs. If you or a loved one is struggling with addiction, you have to choose a drug rehab program which understands the importance of these factors.
Drug counselling focuses on the psychological causes of drug addiction as opposed to the physical effects. The most common psychological causes of drug abuse are peer pressure, escapism, desire to experiment and a belief that drugs can solve problems. Physical detox can remove the body’s dependence on the substance, but these causes require a more detailed and personalised approach. Without proper psychological support, relapse is much more common.
There are many different approaches to most psychological problems, and drug addiction is no different. Some psychologists believe that there is a genetic pre-disposition to addiction within some people, and this view is espoused by the 12 step program. Drug counselling based on this idea is concerned with recognition of the problem, and you or your loved one would be encouraged to admit they are powerless over their condition. The focus is then shifted to the person’s way of life, and the factors which should be altered to correct the issue.
Other psychologists believe that drug addiction is a learned social behaviour, or a symptom of poor coping strategies. This theory states that negative thought patterns, social influence and learned coping mechanisms are responsible for drug addiction. The resulting drug counselling then focuses on replacing these assumptions, thought patterns and coping mechanisms with healthier alternatives. Many drug rehab facilities use this idea in their treatment programs.
Another school of thought believes that drug addiction is a choice, and this directly opposes the “disease” theory of addiction used by the 12 step program. Drug counselling based on this theory is relatively similar to the learned social behaviour theory, in that it focuses on replacing the harmful thought patterns with more self-affirming, positive ideas. Drug rehab programs incorporating this idea empower the individual, and explain that they have the ability to control their own behaviour.
Regardless of which theory you prefer, the basic principles of drug counselling are the same across methodologies. The main idea is that addiction can be controlled by management of the individual’s immediate environment and how they respond to potential triggers for their drug use. Drug detox involves the management of symptoms relating to the withdrawal of a chemical substance, and drug counselling addresses the deeper issues which led to the initial use of the substance, which are also the causes of relapses. All drug rehab centres should therefore use a combined approach to best tackle addiction.
Drug counselling is a vital component of any rehabilitation program, and you should consider the options carefully before making a decision. If you are unsure about which type of program is most suitable for you or your loved one, get in touch for some free advice. I also offer telephone counselling to help with drug addiction (this service has an associated fee). Advice on the options for drug rehab and how they suit your specific needs is completely free, so get in touch and see what help we can offer you!