When Do I Intervene in a Loved One’s Drug Use?

When Do I Intervene in a Loved One’s Drug Use?

When it comes to intervening in a loved one’s drug use, sooner is better. The longer the use continues, the more likely it will become a serious addiction. As long as the addiction continues, the addict’s work and family life will suffer, her health will deteriorate, and when she finally does get treatment, detox will be more difficult. It’s better to say something while you think there might be a problem rather than wait until there is obviously a serious problem. The worst that can happen is she’ll deny having a problem but there is a chance she’ll listen and get help.

Obviously, visible drug use is cause for concern, especially if you see her using addictive drugs like heroin or meth. More often, addicts try to hide their use and you may have to look for subtler signs. Sudden behavioral changes are a big warning sign, especially if she has suddenly become aggressive, defensive, or secretive. Borrowing money or stealing are warning signs too. Her appearance my change and she may be sick more often. She may have problems at work or school. Each of these alone may have some other explanation, but taken together they suggest addiction.

For some addictions, it may be hard to know when legitimate drug use has become a problem. Alcohol, for example, is common in our culture and most people drink without becoming alcoholics. Similarly, many people are prescribed prescription painkillers for a specific purpose and stop when they no longer need them. On the other hand, some people gradually drink more, or take more painkillers until they become dependent and can’t quit. There isn’t so much a hard line–as you might see in heroin, for example–as a gradual slide. If you could compare her behavior now to her behavior before the drinking or pills, a problem may be obvious, but sometimes the change is gradual and we forget.

Most of us are uncomfortable being the person who decides whether our loved one’s drug use in an addiction. Unfortunately, we may have to make that decision because the addict is incapable of seeing it. There are some signs, in addition to those above, that she has become addicted. If she suddenly gets angry or defensive, especially when you confront her about her drinking or drug use, there is a problem. Maybe she has neglected responsibilities in order to use. Then, when that negligence catches up with her, she blames you. She may get angry when she is forced to deviate from her normal routine, as her normal routine is built around drug use and drinking.

If you think there is a problem, start keeping a record of ways drug use interferes with her life or yours. Be specific. When you start keeping track instead of overlooking offences, you may realize the problem is worse than you thought. Don’t feel like you’re being peevish or vindictive in recording these incidents, because you are doing it to help her. These items can help convince her that she has a problem and needs treatment.

When you do decide to intervene, enlist the help of an experienced intervention counsellor as well as several other people close to your loved one. Have them create similar lists, and discuss your intervention strategy with the counsellor. Always remember you’re doing this out of love and your goal is to get her into treatment.

Finding a good treatment center that offers expertise and support is crucial to recovery. At Gardens Wellness Center, we offer a variety of therapeutic approaches in a supportive, comfortable environment. To learn more about our individualized approach to treatment call us today at 844-325-9168 or email us at info@tgwcdetox.com.

What to do While Your Loved One is in Detox

What to do While Your Loved One is in Detox

Getting your addicted loved one into detox is a big win for both of you. It means she has admitted her problem and wants to get better. There is still a long way to go for both of you, but if you have been shouldering the burden of her addiction for years, then helping her recover will be a much more rewarding–if occasionally frustrating–experience. At least now you’re heading in the right direction. While your loved one is going through detox, there are some ways you can help smooth the road ahead.

Find out your detox center’s visitors policies and try to be available for her during detox. Withdrawal is difficult and emotional support helps. If you can, take some time off work or get friends to help you with your responsibilities so you can be available for your loved one. That said, make sure she wants you there before you visit. Not everyone wants company when she’s sick. Also check before bringing other visitors. The last thing you want is a tense or awkward situation during withdrawal.

Many detox centers offer programs for family members. Take any opportunities the detox center offers to participate in family therapy or other support programs. In addition to the physical discomfort of withdrawal, she may be feeling like she screwed up rather badly and showing your support by showing up can help.

In all interactions, remember your loved one is already under a lot of stress being in an unfamiliar environment, suffering through withdrawal, and dealing with cravings, so cut her some extra slack. You may be accustomed to a certain level of righteous anger, but this isn’t the time for that. Now she is trying to get better and it’s hard, so even if you feel like you have a legitimate complaint, it can wait until later. Try not to take anything personally, especially during family therapy sessions.

If the detox center is not part of full treatment program, you can help by researching treatment centers. See what facilities are available in your area and try to find one that will match your loved one’s needs and personality. Different treatment centers have different approaches to treatment and different amenities. Some are pretty spartan and some have a range of holistic therapies. Look for one that’s a good fit for your loved one.

Detox is no time for anyone to be haggling with the insurance company. Do what you can to find out what your loved one’s plan covers and what it doesn’t. You can either find out from the insurance company itself, or from someone at the treatment center who specifically deals with insurance companies. If your loved one doesn’t have insurance, look into Medicare or Medicaid options and be sure to ask treatment centers about payment options. The more you can do, the less your loved one will have to worry about as she starts treatment.

START your recovery at the Gardens Wellness Center in North Miami. Our comfortable environment offers the highest luxuries in detox, making sure you are safe and encouraged to make it through withdrawals. Changing the way we approach detox, our program is focused on holistic care in order to create a foundation of recovery. For information, call:  (844) 325-9168

4 Ways Life Will be Better in Recovery

4 Ways Life Will Be Better in Recovery

Detox and treatment for addiction can seem daunting. Detox can be painful and treatment requires courage. Recovery requires a daily commitment. Why go to all this effort? What’s the payoff? You may be considering treatment because addiction has made you and your family suffer and you don’t want things to get worse. Don’t forget that there is also a lot to look forward to. Here are some ways your life will improve in recovery.

You’ll feel like yourself again. Drugs and alcohol change how your brain works. That doesn’t just affect how you feel, but also how you think and act. It may happen gradually and you might not notice, but you definitely change. Your friends and family know you aren’t the same person you used to be–not quite as sharp, not quite as present. You may have started to do things you wouldn’t normally have done. The good news is this is reversible. When you detox, you stop getting worse and in treatment you start getting better. People who watch their loved ones go through detox sometimes feel like they’ve been reunited with someone they haven’t seen in years. The clarity comes back. There is still a long way to go, but it’s a pretty good start.

You have more money. A serious drug or alcohol addiction costs a lot of money. And it always costs more tomorrow than it did today. Not only do you have to buy the drugs or alcohol, but the worse your addiction, the more costs are associated with it. A DUI or drug charges can be very costly. If your addiction is bad enough to affect your work, you may be making less money too. In recovery, meetings are free and insurance usually covers therapy. When you don’t have to buy ever larger quantities of drugs or alcohol every day, you suddenly find there’s a lot more money in your pocket.

You have less fear. Addictive behavior tends to make people rigid. As drinking or using become increasingly important, it becomes the dominant factor in their lives. Addicts often don’t like to deviate from their routines because they are afraid of missing their usual fix. They may rely mainly on one or two people and get worried if they can’t reach them. Depending on the drug, it may be a matter of hours before withdrawal hits. It’s terrible living with the constant fear of pain and withdrawal. Clinical detox makes withdrawal as painless as possible and after that you no longer have to fear it.

You’ll feel better than you did before. People often get addicted because there was something wrong they couldn’t fix. It may be trauma, abuse, depression, or anxiety. It could be social alienation or chronic pain. The drugs may have helped at first, but they only hid the problem without fixing it. Treatment is a chance to address whatever caused the addiction in the first place. It’s not easy, but in the end you will feel better than you did before addiction.

People considering treatment usually focus on how bad things have gotten, but they don’t often realize how much better life can be. Call Gardens Wellness Center today at 844-325-9168 or email us at info@tgwcdetox.com to learn more about detox and treatment options.

How to Imagine a Better Future

How to Imagine a Better Future

If you have been struggling with addiction for a while, you may have gotten used to things being being bad. Maybe your job or your family life has suffered. You might feel like you’re living from dose to dose. The prospect of detox and treatment may be daunting, to say nothing of a long recovery. You may wonder why you should even bother. Life can get better though, maybe even better than it was before addiction. Here are some ways to help you imagine a better future.

Remember what life was like before. Even if life wasn’t great before addiction, it was probably better. You probably had a bit more money and a few more friends. There were things you enjoyed that weren’t related to drugs and drinking. It probably wasn’t exactly the life you wanted and it did lead to addiction. It will require some improvements, but it was a time when addiction didn’t control your life. That was you. If you lived that life before, you can live it again and live it better.

Talk to recovering addicts. You aren’t the first person to go down this road, not even close. Talk to as many recovering addicts as you can. Listen to their stories at meetings. It might be that none of them will appear to be living the life you want to live, but all of them will tell you they used to be in bad shape–maybe worse than you–and now their lives are better and they are happier. If they can do it, you can too.

Set goals for yourself. If you want, you can spend a little time daydreaming about a perfect future. It might give you some inspiration, but you can’t do it all at once. You generally know what direction you want to go–toward recovery. Set small goals to get you moving in that direction. At first, set the smallest possible goals and make the smallest possible commitments. You could set a goal of Googling recovery centers. Your goal for the entire day might be to look at three centers online. As these small successes accumulate, you can start to imagine bigger wins. Your goals today may be small, but in a year, your goal might be to get that job you always wanted.

You don’t have to know what your perfect life looks like. You just have to believe a better life is possible and try to make today better than yesterday. Gardens Wellness Center can help. We offer detox, counseling, and group therapy. You will leave here knowing more is possible. Call us today at 844-325-9168 or email us at info@tgwcdetox.com.