Has your drug or alcohol addiction started to have a serious impact on your life?
Perhaps it’s damaging your health, relationships or your career?
If so, it may be time to seek professional help.
At Rehab 4 Addiction, we can help you to access the right treatment to suit your needs and your budget.
The first question crossing people’s minds when they use regularly is whether they are addicted.
There are, more often than not, parallel signs of addiction across all substance abuse.
Frequent intoxication from drugs or alcohol may lead to substance abuse.
Substance abuse tends to stem from recreational use or drinking, normally in social settings.
The reason addiction is referred to as a disease is because it can be progressive, and can stem from genetics and environments.
The classic tell-tale signs of addiction (drugs or alcohol) include:
Addiction tends to take a large toll on emotions and mental health, normally leading users to become mentally ill with anxiety or depression, along with irritability and confusion when trying to reduce alcohol or drug consumption.
There are a few tests you can take yourself at home to give you a basis on addiction.
This is not final, nor is it 100% accurate as you may be in denial.
However, these tests will give you an idea as to whether you may have an issue with drugs and alcohol.
These questionnaires are designed to be less intrusive than asking a patient or a friend directly if they have a problem.
This can lead to them becoming more isolated and become defensive.
There are fewer tests for drug abuse, but all are founded on these types of questions:
The CAGE questionnaire is a series of questions that medical professionals can use in order to determine whether you or someone else is dependent on alcohol.
CAGE is derived from:
Responses to the questions are scored a 0 for a no and 1 for a yes.
Higher scores are a signal of drug and alcohol dependency and issues.
A score of 2 or more is considered to be clinically substantial.
Treating drug and alcohol disorders can often start with intervention.
Interventions are beneficial because they are tailored for individual needs and comfort.
Interventions give the user an option to try and change their behaviours before the need for rehabilitation, which unfortunately has negative connotations and social stigma.
Recognising that you need help is the first step to changing behaviour.
Types of Intervention:
The CRAFT intervention is a process with 3 main goals:
CRAFT stands for community reinforcement approach and family training.
It is a behavioural approach, mainly stemming from psychotherapy aimed to treat addiction.
Research has shown that CRAFT is a highly effective approach in increasing the likelihood that someone will accept their addiction and move forward with treatment.
According to Camden’s profile of alcohol and substance misuse, there are over 15,000 residents that used drugs in 2012.
Of the 15,000, over 6000 used class A drugs.
Camden has one of the largest cocaine-using populations in all of London.
An example of Camden’s issues is proposed in a recent public study, of which the results were:
This is just a small sample of the data provided by the profile, but it is worrying nonetheless.
It is clear that there is a younger drug demographic in this area of London.
This might be why it’s been labelled as the ‘Amsterdam of the UK’.
The most common understanding of rehabilitation is the result of high-profile celebrities attending expensive private centres.
This is a common misconception, and if corrected could lead to users and addicts finding help more often.
There are two main types of treatments, inpatient and outpatient.
This allows the user can focus on rehabilitation and therapy.
The length of stay needed to address drug abuse will entirely depend on the rate and potency of the substance in question, but generally requires longer than alcohol treatment.
It’s commonly believed that alcohol and drug rehabilitation is not covered by private health insurance.
More often than not, it is.
The difficulty lies in whether addiction is seen as a disease, in conjunction with standard illness usually covered by insurance.
If you need rehabilitation, you are entitled to NHS care, following a conversation with a GP.
There are also charities and private treatments that can aid rehabilitation.
Appointment with GP: You will be quizzed on use, life situations and possibly asked to provide a sample of urine or saliva. They will suggest local support groups and appoint you a key worker to support you going forward.
Assigned a treatment plan such as:
You may be offered outpatient treatment, or inpatient if your addiction is worse.
It is difficult to obtain funding for rehab through the NHS, as you have to go through a rigorous process to receive it, including appeals to funding committees.
These committees are administrated by the local council, which can take months to receive an answer.
Particular employee insurance policies also cover the cost of rehab.
However, anyone attempting to access these services will often need to disclose their condition to their employer, which not everyone is comfortable doing.
Alcohol can be physically and psychologically addictive, much like drugs.
Alcohol dependence normally includes:
The biggest sign of alcohol dependency is withdrawal, following intense cravings and feeling the ‘need’ for alcohol at most times of the day.
When you drink regularly and in large amounts, you may start to experience withdrawal symptoms if you don’t drink.
These can include:
If you want to stop or control your drinking, but you are struggling or feel like you can’t, you may be in need of help.
If you have given up activities, or alcohol is causing a problem, you should consider rehab facilities and therapies proven to help dependency.
Part of rehabilitation for alcohol withdrawal can include substitute medications.
These medications are appropriate for outpatient rehabilitation programmes, helping reduce the withdrawal symptoms and prevent more dangerous reactions.
One popular type of medication is Chlordiazepoxide, also known as Librium.
It has a “wide therapeutic window” and is ideal for detoxing.
This is usually carried on over the space of 10 days, but is flexible depending on the level of dependency.
There are other medications, such as:
Unlike alcohol, cocaine is not physically addictive, so you won’t get physical withdrawals as you do with heroin and alcohol.
Because of this, cocaine detox doesn’t exist.
Cocaine raises levels of dopamine once administered, and after repeated use, your tolerance will increase.
Once your tolerance for cocaine is high, you will start to feel mentally imbalanced, feeling emotions such as depression if you try and withdraw ‘cold turkey’.
The most common changes when quitting cocaine are behavioural, including changes in personality.
Individuals can feel more frustrated and feel anxious once the mental health issues start to kick in, including risks of paranoia.
Like cocaine, cannabis is not physically addictive.
Cannabis is also known as marijuana or weed, and is the most commonly used substance in the UK presently.
Typically smoked or cut with tobacco, cannabis affects the nervous system, inducing feelings of relaxation.
However, cannabis can also cause disassociation with time and space, including anxiety and paranoia.
Heroin is an opiate, deriving originally from poppies.
Heroin addiction has detrimental effects on both physical and mental health, including:
The clearest signs of heroin addiction are:
Heroin is a more physically addictive drug than cocaine.
As previously mentioned, intervention and the CRAFT approach are the first steps for drug use, with a high success rate.
Below, we outline some of the common forms of addiction therapies you can benefit from when undergoing drug and alcohol rehab in Camden:
This is commonly used to treat mental problems associated with addiction such as anxiety and depression.
It is based on your thoughts and feelings around addiction, to help you break out of the cycle of addiction you are in.
CBT breaks down problems into smaller and manageable parts to help cope and change negative patterns.
It aims to help the user understand and accept feelings they find difficult, developing skills to manage negative emotions.
This helps a user to accept negative behaviour, letting you move on to accomplishing reachable goals.
Holistic therapy is a treatment for the whole body, rather than addressing specific symptoms.
Holistic therapy helps users to improve other parts of their life, increasing their general wellbeing and giving them a better chance of beating addiction.
This is usually done through:
This is a practice of self-care and well-being, placing the whole body as a responsibility for the user.
12 step facilitation (TSF) treatments are designed to help users get sober from alcohol and other drugs by encouraging community participation.
TSF’s are primarily focused on Alcoholics Anonymous (AA), integrating network support with cognitive behavioural problem-solving.
These 12 step support groups have the same steps, based on admitting your susceptibility to addiction, giving your life over to a higher power (whatever that may be), and finally resolving to change your life and make amends.
Rehab and therapy are designed for long-term success.
Common causes of relapse are:
Many therapies and drug treatments aim to educate users, involving prevention techniques to maintain a consistent path to recovery.
With this in mind, recovery is rarely linear, meaning a relapse is quite normal and nothing to be ashamed of.
Some relapse prevention techniques to implement into daily life:
SMART stands for self-management and recovery training.
This service provides the tools for previous users to change their negative behaviour and thoughts.
This is guided by trained professionals, specifically tailored to CBT tools.
The main points of post-rehab recovery include:
This enables those in recovery to change their problematic behaviour, making a change for the better.
A tool box of methods are provided at meetings to prevent the fall into relapse.
You can find the SMART meetings in Camden here.
Call us on 0800 140 4690 if you’re ready to battle your drug or alcohol addiction and begin your journey to a happier and healthier new you.
Our advisors are experts when it comes to finding the perfect UK rehab treatment.
We look forward to helping you take that all-important first step in living a life free from substance abuse.