The Importance of Extending Your Addiction Therapy Treatment
For many addicts, that first step towards recovering from this life-threatening condition is simply going into rehab. But is one stint in a primary facility enough? Because there are several tiers of treatment that addicts can undergo, each giving the addict a greater chance of successfully avoiding relapse.
It is important to note that although some liken addiction to a disease, it is officially classified as a disorder. Such as Bipolar Disorder. And unlike diseases, disorders are not “curable” but only treatable. Flu is a disease — eventually, the immune system defeats it. But as with Bipolar Disorder, Addiction-related disorders are lifelong. And so require constant maintenance to keep them in check.
An addict is never cured of addiction, it is managed. Meaning, they can “relapse” just as a bipolar can relapse into mania if not taking their medication and doing psychotherapy.
With addiction, the main “medication” one would use to off-set a relapse is psychotherapy and support groups.
This is where recovery treatment centres like Houghton House fit in.
There are steps to keep from relapsing.
We spoke about tiers of treatment. Basically, there are four: Primary, Secondary, Tertiary, and the fourth is maintenance-based.
In Primary, the addict goes into a rehab centre, is cut off from the outside world, prevented from access to drugs or alcohol, and undergo an education programme designed to make them aware of what addiction actually is.
They mainly focus on the denial of the damage addiction has caused their lives and the lives of their loved ones.
This is essential, because many addicts have had a “relationship” with their drug of choice, and just like any abusive relationship, there is a temptation to go back to it.
Often, in our experience, addicts start reminiscing about the “good” times they had with their drugs of choice. This has to be counter-balanced with reality checks.
The next step.
Often, we recommend at Houghton that certain patients do a Secondary treatment programme.
This is because despite a well-honed team of counsellors working on Addiction Therapy Treatment and armed with lessons and sessions designed to face up to denial, many addicts still relapse. After all, it is a disorder and a disorder affects the way the brain functions.
In Secondary, addicts are given more freedom. Now they’re allowed to use their phones and have a certain amount of time out the facility – though it is strictly enforced.
When addicts in Secondary don’t stick to the rules, they lose privileges. This helps implement a negative and positive feedback loop into how one’s own actions have repercussions on one’s immediate future.
Secondary is important because it allows the addict to experience the world again, just under quite strict controls. This helps reinforce recovery, and reinforce recovery-based behaviours. It establishes more normalcy in an addict’s life.
In addition to this, Houghton House also conducts intensive group therapies and more in-depth exercises into addiction. Not to mention physical exercise, though this plays a role in both tiers.
Secondary treatment unfolds over a longer time period than Primary.
Because tech, which we must admit we all love, is allowed between certain hours, Secondary is far less deprived an experience than Primary — where it is of utmost important to keep the outside world at bay.
Finally, on completing their Secondary experience, which has involved chores, being organised, keeping to structured plans, and going to regular 12-Step Meetings, addicts are ready for the outside world in full.
But not necessarily on their own. We advise additional support, which is where Tertiary comes in.
Tertiary’s importance as a structured living environment.
What we call Tertiary is essentially a halfway house. Houghton has had over 20 years experience in managing this important stepping stone. Here, the addict gets far more freedom — though there are still important rules in place for them to help structure their lives.
Here’s an example: everyone for the week is assigned a chore to do, whether it is cleaning the kitchen in the evenings, or the patio, or the pool…
This instils discipline and is handy for when the addict finally returns to their own home.
They’re also required to do a certain amount of meetings per week, five in the first month, three in the second onwards. Then there are small group sessions during the week. This ensures that there are no issues in the house during Addiction Therapy Treatment. It gives housemates a chance to confront each other on possible lapses in behaviour that may have been noticed.
Further, there are curfew times, and times they need to be out the house during the day. This is so they get into the habit of being back in the rhythm of life. Such as going to a regular job. Or working hard to find a new one.
Perhaps most importantly is while they’re experiencing this extension of freedom, there are randomised tests that take place: drug and alcohol tests. It’s not about catching anyone out, it’s about giving them a safety net of sorts.
Residents during this stage of recovery are welcome to stay at the Tertiary institution for as long as they feel necessary.
Maintenance: the fourth part.
We also offer special groups outside of our institutions, some which meet three times a week for an hour and following that ones that are once a week. The three times a week groups are called Aftercare (anyone who was a patient at Houghton is welcome to this).
We do randomised testing here as well, which just helps add another barrier towards relapsing.
The group’s main function is a therapeutic space where they have a chance to deal with real-life issues they’re facing post-in-patient treatment. Added group support, we find, goes a long way to helping an addict keep clean. Camaraderie is key.
Following that, the once-a-week groups are helpful in getting addicts to continue their drug-free journey through life. This can be joined following the Aftercare programme. Once Addiction Therapy Treatment is joined, there is no obligation to stop at any time.
An addict is welcome to continue to be part of our family for as long as they like. Our pricing is market-related, and quite fair.
Why extending Addiction Therapy Treatment is so important.
The more time spent clean and with the necessary support structure in place, the less likely a relapse is to occur. This helps break the cycle of misery and devastation that occurs with drug and alcohol addiction.
As each part of the programme is structured in suitable ways for the addict’s recovery life cycle, the longer they keep at it, the more certain it becomes that – while never dead – addiction becomes dormant.
And with continued therapeutic support from our team, possibly dormant forever.
For more information on Addiction Therapy Treatment and getting yourself into rehab to start a new life, call Houghton House now:
office hours: 011 787 9142
24/7 emergency help line: 079 770 7532
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