Treatment can include a variety of steps tailored to care for the whole person, such as:
- Medical assessment and treatment, including detoxification, and treatment of health problems common to addiction
- Prescribed medications to help reduce cravings, such as methadone, buprenorphine, and naltrexone
- A change in environment to one free of drugs and alcohol and the surroundings, stresses, and companions that may trigger using habits
- Individual, group, and family therapy, such as cognitive behavior therapy
- 12-step or other self-help recovery groups such as Alcoholics Anonymous or Narcotics Anonymous
- Education for the person and family
- Activity therapy
- Access to spiritual counsel and faith practices
- Alternative therapies such as mindfulness-based meditation and acupuncture
Some of these treatments are available on an outpatient basis. Many people also find residential treatment programs to be very effective in providing a complete treatment program for a period of time. The right type of treatment for you should be determined from a thorough evaluation by a qualified addiction professional.
There are also therapeutic communities available for those with more serious problems, such as a long history of addiction, involvement in criminal activity, or impaired social functioning. Some are designed to accommodate the needs of women who are pregnant or have children. The person who is recovering typically lives in the therapeutic community for six to 12 months. Therapeutic communities are highly structured programs that include complete sobriety and responsibilities to the community.