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Contemporary Drug Rehabilitation Treatments

Currently, 23.5 million adults and teens have a substance abuse problem where only 10 percent seek treatment for the addiction. Very few of these individuals receiving help stay drug-free successfully. The issue with the traditional programs seems to be linked to a lack of targeting the undying cause of the problem and a lack of medical knowledge from those offering solutions. Therefore, a relapse is only a matter of time. The implication is that the drug or alcohol dependency is only a symptom of a greater problem. If the foundational concern is not addressed, then the way that individuals deal with the profound problems will continue to resurface. The lack of use of proven scientific methods in these programs is failing those that are looking for help.

The Process of Detox

Most programs start with the process of detoxification, thus placing a medically managed withdrawal from the drug as the first step in the process. This practice is highly problematic because withdrawal symptoms can be severe. Therefore, some consider that gradual reduction or, harm reduction, is the best course of action. In other treatment facilities, specialists treat patients with cannabis as a way to help the detox process. Although the idea seems counterintuitive, Joe Schrank, the director of High Sobriety in Los Angeles, states that the results have been effective and promising. Cannabis has a positive effect in helping with the reversal of the harm caused by heroine, reversing some of the damage on receptors such as the glutamatergic receptors. Furthermore, cannabinoids contained in the cannabis plant also help activate the serotonin system, which positively affects mood and has antidepressant properties. Therefore, although further scientific inquiry is underway, treatments based on CBD vape oil seem to be possible.

Dealing with Underlying Issues

The process of detoxification does not deal with the psychological, social, or behavioral problem whose consequence produces an addiction problem. Therefore, effective treatment must move beyond ridding the body of drugs and deal with the main issues. In a literature review titled Substance Abuse Treatment: What Works for Homeless People, Suzanne Zerger indicated that drug problems are a consequence of a deeper-rooted disorder. Zerger, for example, places these issues as a consequence of homelessness, mental illnesses, and other underlying factors. Understanding the contentious fundamental problems are helpful in developing long-term solutions to the reasons why people seek drugs or alcohol as an escape. When looking for treatment options, patients must look beyond a singular solution. Instead, they should consider holistic approaches such as an inpatient drug rehab program that includes medical plans that deal with the factors that led to the development of substance abuse. Otherwise, any other form of treatment will fall short and will have a lower probability of long-term success.  

Medical Training, Early Detection, and Prevention

Scientific evidence effectively concludes that substance abuse is a medical disorder. The body of evidence and scientific results in this topic is conclusive and overwhelming. As with any other medical concern, including heart disease and diabetes, there are ways to detect symptoms and warning signs and prevent serious problems. However, early detection is fairly uncommon in America. Mainly, doctors, nurses, and other health professionals are not adequately trained or equipped for screening and detection. Furthermore, researchers that study the topic of addiction conclude that most of those providing addiction assistance do not have proper training in the field and may not be equipped with the knowledge or credentials to diagnose or treat such a medical condition. Therefore, these treatment options have fundamental disconnects between the medical aspect of addiction and long-term solutions. The researchers recommend this area of medicine to be more integrated into the health care system where trained and certified physicians are the front line for treatment options.

 

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James Dunham

James Dunham