FOUR PHASES TO RECOVERING FROM BEING HOOKED ON DRUGS
I have been very privileged to handle not a few cases of substance intake and being addicted to substances that we generally call drugs. These 4 phases are not written based on theoretical or textbook deductions. These are phases that I have managed by involvement and hence I write from experience.
THIS POST IS BOTH FOR THE THERAPIST & THE PATIENT RECOVERING FROM SUBSTANCE ADDICTION.
- The addict must remember that it takes a LOT OF PERSONAL WILL to recover from this addiction. There is no successful work a therapist can perform if the patient does not commit to recovery. That’s why the first thing all parties (therapist, patient, patient’s sponsor e.g parents, etc.) must take note of is to SECURE THE WILLINGNESS OF THE PATIENT TO RECOVER.
- The Therapist should recognize that effective rehabilitation is a combination of several strategies including: session therapies (psychotherapy, psychoanalysis, some psychiatric evaluations where applicable & motivational domains. In some cases, spiritual explorations are inevitable), isolation management (this is a minimum of 21 concurrent days enforced or sustained abstinence, and future pacing (develop the picture of a desired future and create a path towards its fulfillment outside the path of substance intake).
So what are the 4 stages towards recovery:
- Most patients *#RESIST* the process. This is even after giving initial consent. It seems that they suddenly see the reality of elimination of that ‘temporary feel good’ effect and their physiology (body) is fighting for liberty to indulge. This can go on for between 3 to 7 days.
- After this, the patient enters what may be the MOST FRANTIC STAGE called the *#FRENZY*. Imagine surviving 5 days of not taking ‘stuff’ and then your body (and this is a HORMONAL RESPONSE FROM YOUR BODY) is craving for it (at least one more shot, they say). This is when the patient becomes aggressive, submissive (they’d do anything for you just to gain sympathy to get a shot), shaky, anxious, and any other behaviour that shows they are ‘feeling the heat of the removal of substance and its craving’.
m a k t u b!!!