Frequently Asked Questions About Drug & Alcohol Addiction Treatment

+What sets The Hills Treatment Center apart from other programs?
We believe the opposite of addiction is connection. Healthy relationships, active 12-step involvement and therapeutic support is how we prepare our clients for life after The Hills. Teaching clients how to embrace and balance their professional, personal and recovery life is our priority. We accomplish this by staffing The Hills with master level licensed clinicians who are almost all in recovery; creating both a professional and personal experience for all our clients. Our clinicians work closely as a team to develop comprehensive plans for individuals, ultimately producing the best individualized treatment possible. Once our clinicians gather critical data about each client they carefully and successfully prepare an appropriate transition plan into a life of developing recovery.
+How does The Hills detox?
Our physician and nurses have a range of options to make sure that every patient’s detox is safe and as comfortable as possible.
+Can The Hills detox off of Methadone?
Yes. While there are some exceptions, our standard requirement is for the patient to be on no higher than a daily dose of 80mgs.
+Can The Hills detox off of Benzos?
Yes. While benzodiazepine withdrawal is potentially life threatening, we are able to handle most patients’ detoxification from benzodiazepines and other sedatives.
+Do you take insurance?
Yes. The Hills Treatment Center is continually working with insurance companies.  If we are not contracted we will work with an insurance company if the client has “Out-of-Network” benefits. Call now to talk to our admissions specialists. We can help estimate how much it will cost to make this life changing experience a reality.
+Should my family be involved in my treatment?
Family involvement is crucial for the recovery process. Many times, addiction stems from issues within the family, so it’s essential to understand family dynamics and provide a space for the family to communicate and heal. Not only does this heal the client, but it brings freedom and peace for the rest of the family.
+I'm calling for a family member, do we need a family program?
Family Programs are highly recommended. Recognizing that families are equally impacted by addiction and have a central role in the recovery process is essential for the success of recovery for everyone. The complex relational patterns developed during a family member’s active addiction will require a steady focus on family interactions to bring about productive change. Systemic recovery is one of our core values, by broadening the recovery process from the individual to the family we improve effectiveness for everyone. The Hills creates space for families to have a voice during their family members time here. Because the recovery process is complex and multi-faceted we believe open communication is essential. We appreciate and support families seeking positive change and who have their own goals.
We believe that “family” is any identified as such, not all family shares genetics.

 

Common family dynamics, complications and challenges

  • Including the whole family unit on the healing and recovery process
  • Establishing appropriate internal and external boundaries
  • Knowing what to except during each stage of the recovery process
  • Developing a set of shared values about their family identity (who they are)
  • Awakening and applying every family member’s strengths
  • Understanding how healthy families function
  • Maintaining family roles

+What is The Hills Treatment Center success rate? Will l be ``cured``?
Most addictions have no definite “cure” – only ongoing recovery. At The Hills Treatment Center, we base our reputable success rate on the number of alumni who recommend our program to friends and relatives, the number of referrals we get from other treatment facilities, and the number of patients referred to us by therapists and other medical practitioners. The Hills Treatment Center was established in 2003 (previously known as Wonderland) and since we have provided quality treatment for thousands of clients who were recommended to us by other leading professionals in the industry and alumni.
+Can we tour drug rehab facilities before making a decision?
Prior to making the decision to enter a drug rehab, researching facilities will prove beneficial. Some drug rehab facilities are hesitant to provide tours for potential clients due to the strict confidentiality factor incorporated into drug and alcohol treatment programs. However, once the decision has been made to enter that specific drug rehab program, tours are available upon request. Most inpatient drug treatment centers provide pictures as well as descriptions of facility amenities, environment and atmosphere on their websites. Some also include virtual tours of the property and living quarters.

Once deciding on your inpatient drug rehab center of choice, one can schedule a tour or a phone interview to ask any questions you have and gain more information about the facility. Some questions you should ask about:

  • Start date
  • What to bring
  • What not to bring
  • How friends and family can contact you and when
  • What programs will be most beneficial for you
  • Etc.

When you arrive, you will begin by going through an intake interview with the staff medical doctor and the staff psychologist. This allows providers to better understand where you are in your addiction, learn about your drug history so to create appropriate treatment goals, and a treatment plan to help you accomplish goals.

+What Specifically Am I Paying For In A Drug Rehab?

Usually, the first thing to consider when choosing a drug rehab program is the cost. What specifically are you paying for in a drug rehab program? Drug and alcohol rehab programs have the potential to be very expensive, with costs reaching and exceeding tens of thousands of dollars for even a brief amount of time. The drug rehab process itself can involve very complex treatment methods, with costs depending on the quality of the treatments offered. Sometimes, additional costs incurred at drug rehab programs are related to the qualifications of the staff – which include doctors, therapists, and counselors – as well as the level of medical care and counseling offered.

The fees for drug rehab centers are based on the costs of the services and amenities they offer. The more specialized a drug and alcohol rehab program is, the more expensive it has the tendency to be. The longer your stay, the higher your costs. Some examples of specialized drug rehab methodologies and amenities that can increase the costs of treatment include massage, acupuncture, yoga, sauna tissue detox, dual diagnosis rehab, neurofeedback and equine assisted psychotherapy. The exclusivity of the rehab center itself can increase the costs of private pay drug rehab centers. For example, many who enter residential drug treatment desire a private bedroom and to be in a more secluded environment. This type of comfort and privacy increases your costs.

In addition to the various amenities and services offered, as well as the qualifications of the staff and medical professionals, you are also paying for a priceless education in drug abuse, emotional and physical rehabilitation and well being, and how to live healthily and successfully. A new lease on life and an investment in your future, while financially costly when entering a drug rehab facility, is truly invaluable.

+What is drug rehab like? What goes on there?

  • Intake assessment–psychosocial evaluation.
  • Detoxification.
  • Psycho-educational groups about addiction.
  • Individual therapy sessions.
  • Family therapy or a family program.
  • Group therapy.
  • Recreational therapy.
  • 12 step meetings of Alcoholics Anonymous or Narcotics Anonymous
  • Relapse prevention and aftercare plan.

What will my daily life be like during drug rehab?

A typical day in drug rehab varies depending on the program selected. The Best drug rehab programs are highly structured with a combination of individual, group and family therapy, 12-Step meetings, educational lectures, recreational activities, and life skills training. Most drug rehab programs provide three meals a day and time for personal reflection or meditation.

In general for drug rehab, the more time a patient spends in drug rehab, the more freedom they have to determine their own schedule, participate in off-campus activities and meetings, and visit with family. Some programs offer “step-down” levels of care to help the drug rehab patient gradually transition back into daily life.

+What Happens If I Relapse?

Many of us lived mundane and pointless lives while in active addiction; from sun up to sun down, each day was dedicated to obtaining and using our drugs, and doing it all over again the next day. By coming to drug rehab, we decided to arrest our harmful habits and unhealthy lifestyles, and change our lives for the better. After thirty, sixty, or ninety days in a drug rehabilitation program, we successfully detoxed from all substances and gained a new, optimistic outlook on our lives. Having found our pink clouds, we expected to move forward in our recovery from drug addiction with ease, but the possibility of slipping back into old thoughts and actions is just a drink or a drug away. Rehab taught us about the dangers of drugs and alcohol and the consequences of our powerlessness to them, so what happens if a relapse occurs?

The first thing that happens in the case of a relapse is we lose our sobriety date. The sobriety clock resets as we lose the clean time we have accrued. We do not, however, lose the education we received from attending a drug treatment program. Using drugs and alcohol used to be fun, but now that we have completed a drug treatment program, attended meetings of Alcoholics Anonymous, and learned about the nature of drug addiction, we know too much, and a head full of A.A. and a belly full of booze cannot comfortably coexist.

The next thing to happen in the case of a relapse is we lose our sense of pride and accomplishment for the hard work we put into getting clean. Others may lose confidence or trust in us and redevelop the fear, anger and sadness they experienced before we came to treatment. In cases of extreme and reckless drug abuse, we experience more loss as our lives take a turn in three different ways: coming in and out of drug rehab programs, we lose our livelihoods and independence by becoming institutionalized; breaking the law and inflicting physical damage to ourselves and others, we lose our freedoms by establishing a criminal record through a series of arrests and jail and prison sentences; and in the worst case scenario, we lose our lives through our excessive drug abuse, leaving behind irreparable emotional damage to those who love us.

Relapse is a great possibility for anyone in recovery who does not put his or her sobriety first. Typical of those who stop attending A.A. meetings, working the steps, or calling the sponsor, relapse is not only likely, it is inevitable. In the 1986 study on drug addiction and relapse entitled Relapse and Recovery In Drug Abuse, research indicated that the relapse rate for those who completed a drug treatment program was 53.6% for heroin, 25.1% for other narcotics, 20.1% for cocaine, and 16.7% for non-narcotic substances. The data provided indicates posttreatment daily use following a relapse during the first year of sobriety.

As alcoholics and addicts, we didn’t need a specific reason to use-we used simply because the sun came up. To the alcoholic mind, anything and everything can be identified as a reason to use again. Physical and emotional triggers play a tremendous role in relapse. Dangerous settings, such as bars or parties, where alcohol and drugs are being used can cause a person new to recovery to relapse; stressful situations such as family feuds or emotionally-charged arguments with a significant other can be a recipe for relapse; high-stress jobs and tasks can be relapse triggers; even feelings of happiness and accomplishment can give us a reason to pick up a drink or a drug in celebration. To the recovering alcoholic or addict, relapse triggers are all people, places and things, and we must be vigilant in recognizing and avoiding these triggers.

In experiencing a relapse, we may need to reenroll in a drug rehabilitation program where we can safely detox from the substances we abuse and receive quality medical attention and psychopharmacological assessments. In the case that detoxification is not necessary, a stay in a drug rehab center can still be beneficial to the alcoholic or addict trying to achieve sobriety.

If you experience a relapse, or are concerned that a relapse may occur, you might consider enrolling in an intensive outpatient program (IOP) where you can address issues surrounding your addiction and recovery in order to prevent a relapse. In addition to an aftercare program, entering a sober living house where a healthy, sober lifestyle is encouraged and fostered can contribute to a stronger foundation in your sobriety and make you accountable to others through regular and random urinalyses, chores, and group meditations.

Relapse is a common occurrence among individuals trying to quit alcohol and drugs, but it does not have to be a part of your recovery.

+What is a Sober Living?

Sober living houses are becoming an increasingly popular method of aftercare for those adjusting into a sober lifestyle. Leaving a drug rehab and immediately returning to the real world may be overwhelming or triggering, and sober living facilities provide a solution to this problem. Every house provides different methods of care, although there are a few general qualities.

Most but not all sober living houses require residents to attend twelve step meetings of their choice. Other requirements for residence may include daily chores, staying sober, respecting the curfew, and general cleanliness. Sobriety is often tested by weekly or random urinalysis.

Sober living houses are one of the most helpful ways for newly recovering addicts to transition into their new life of sobriety. The structured environment keeps the individual motivated towards positive change, and the supportive peer network provides a group of fellows who aid the addict in their recovery.

There are thousands of sober living facilities in the country, and each one provides different services. Some are highly structured, with regular groups and on-site meetings, while others simply require residents to stay sober. Depending upon your preferences, it is important to find the most fitting house for you.

+What is Al-Anon?

Al-Anon is a fellowship similar in all regards to that of the normal twelve step fellowships with one major difference. It is a fellowship for non alcoholics or addicts whom have a family member, friend, or loved one who suffers from the disease of addiction. Addiction is not only and individual disease but is considered a family disease as well. It not only affects the addict suffering but their close friends and loved ones too. It is believed that when a family is dealing with addiction in a loved one they also suffer and become ill. Those close to the alcoholic or addict can become consumed with their disease and feel that they must try and help. They may take the blame for what has happened or put their needs second. This becomes increasingly unhealthy for anyone close to the addict and can negatively affect their life even though they are not the one abusing drugs or alcohol.

When families, friends, or loved ones are surrounded by addiction it can tear down the strength and unity of that group. This is why Al-Anon is so useful. Most people who do not suffer from this disease have trouble to really understand the thought process and mental status of the addict. They become confused and hurt by the actions of the addict and do not know what to do. Al-Anon not only provides support for those dealing with a loved one in addiction but it helps to educate the non addict on the disease of addiction and how it really affects the person who suffers from it.

This can be a tough road at first but with the support of others who are going through the same thing it can be much easier. Al-Anon can be an important stepping stone for family members and loved ones to take back their own life and learn what they can do to actually help the addict, or at the very least not to enable them any further.

+What is co-dependency?

Co-dependency is a behavior that sometimes is classified as a “relationship addiction”. It is an unhealthy obsession with a relationship in which the co-dependent partner or partners becomes dependent on the other even if the relationship is toxic or abusive. It is most commonly referenced when someone has a relationship with a loved one or spouse who is in active addiction.

Co-dependent relationships deter the possibility to have a meaningful and healthy relationship. Co-dependent people have good intentions but are not living a healthy life. They may try to take care of the addict or alcoholic they are involved with or “save” them from their addiction. They can develop addictions of their own or compulsive behaviors. Even if the person they have a relationship with is abusive or mistreating them they may not separate themselves from that individual. They are almost entirely dependent on that relationship and become oblivious to what is really going on. They enable the addict or alcoholic which can make a situation worse than it already is.

Some might be in denial that they are co-dependent and claim that they just care, but being involved in a co-dependent relationship only harms both parties involved. Non addicts who are co-dependent with an addict may become just as addicted to the relationship as the addict is to alcohol or drugs. This relationship can also have a broader affect and push other family members or loved ones away. Loved ones begin to takes sides and separate from the unity and support that is necessary.

This is why Al-Anon is so important. It can expose a co-dependent relationship and teach the non addict exactly what has been transpiring. Without a program like this they may never have otherwise realized their part in what has been going on. Not only do addicts need to recover but so do those who surround the addict. It is a family disease in which all need to be educated and healed accordingly. Al-Anon is an amazing program that will provide the tools and support needed for families and loved ones of addicts to regain their normal lives and learn what they can do to help the individual in active addiction. Al-Anon is recommended for anyone who is close to an alcoholic or addict no matter if they are in a co-dependent relationship or not.

+What is holistic drug rehab?

Holistic health is a concept in medical practice that encompasses the whole person. All aspects of one’s life are considered, such as physical health, mental health and wellness, emotional well-being, spiritual beliefs, and values. Holistic healing differs from alternative, complementary, and integrative medicine in that physical health is not necessarily the main focus. The holistic view on drug rehab treatment is widely accepted in medicine.

The holistic approach to drug addiction treatment and drug rehab has proven extremely effective in increasing addiction recovery rates and preventing relapse. Treatment incorporates the mind, body and spirit to promote recovery. Programs that integrate holistic drug rehabilitation addiction treatment components have shown to be successful with combined with standard treatment elements.

Types of Holistic Health Therapies and Treatments:

  • Acupuncture
  • Healthy changes to diet or natural diet
  • Spiritual counseling
  • Meditation
  • Exercise
  • Homeopathy
  • Energy-based therapies

Benefits of Holistic Drug Rehab Therapies

To understand the benefits of holistic drug rehab therapies, consider what can happen to patients who do not gain any holistic treatment. As an example, if a patient leaves drug rehab that focused only on detox and physical wellness, what happens when that patient has a bad day at work, goes through divorce or just feels worn down by life’s typical trials? That patient may then resort to using drugs again, not because their body is unhealthy, but because their mind and spirit are not strengthened in recovery.

Holistic drug rehab strengthens patient resistance to drugs or alcohol by helping those patients do the following:

  • Connect socially to other healthy individuals and peers in recovery
  • Connect to a spiritual side of themselves or a higher power, for a more rounded perspective of daily life and the future
  • Integrate new methods of relaxation into their lives as ways to overcome momentary and even long-term hurdles in sobriety
  • Gain outlets for self-expression and communication of feelings that would otherwise be pinned up inside, fueling potential relapse

Overall, holistic rehab methods help patients feel more entirely healed, less alone, more deeply engaged in the world around them and ready for trials and tribulations of daily life without relapse.

+Why do I need a drug rehab?
Addiction is a gripping and powerful disease. Many addicts believe they have the power to quit on their own, even after numerous failed attempts. Denial is a key characteristic of addiction, and it causes many people to be unable to see their problem and ask for help. The twelve-step group Alcoholics Anonymous utilizes the Twenty Questions that can help you assess if you have a drug or alcohol problem, but there are many common symptoms.

Addicts and alcoholics often have trouble quitting or staying quit, even during circumstances in which it is inappropriate to be high. Previously important matters such as finances, work or school, family and relationships, or other daily obligations become obsolete, as the pursuit of the substance becomes more and more important. Though an addict may sometimes swear off drugs or alcohol and truly mean it, they often find themselves using within a short period.

Drug rehabs offer experienced professionals that can help you through your recovery process. At a drug rehab nobody is judged for their addiction, as it is seen as an illness and treated as such. The staff and healthy peer group provide an atmosphere for recovery that is unrivaled. Many addicts require a detox procedure, and many rehab centers have one on-site.

Drug treatment centers are a safe environment for the newly recovering addict to process the root causes of their addiction and to learn to live sober and healthy. Various forms of counseling, therapy, and healthy activities give the addict a head start in the right direction.

+Why do some people become addicted while others do not?

No single factor can predict whether or not a person will become addicted to drugs. Risk for addiction is influenced by a person’s biology, social environment, and age or stage of development. The more risk factors an individual has, the greater the chance that taking drugs can lead to addiction. For example:
  • Biology. The genes that people are born with–in combination with environmental influences–account for about half of their addiction vulnerability. Additionally, gender, ethnicity, and the presence of other mental disorders may influence risk for drug abuse and addiction.
  • Environment. A person’s environment includes many different influences–from family and friends to socioeconomic status and quality of life in general. Factors such as peer pressure, physical and sexual abuse, stress, and parental involvement can greatly influence the course of drug abuse and addiction in a person’s life.
  • Development. Genetic and environmental factors interact with critical developmental stages in a person’s life to affect addiction vulnerability, and adolescents experience a double challenge. Although taking drugs at any age can lead to addiction, the earlier that drug use begins, the more likely it is to progress to more serious abuse. And because adolescents’ brains are still developing in the areas that govern decision-making, judgment, and self-control, they are especially prone to risk-taking behaviors, including trying drugs of abuse.

+How do you determine when one needs drug detox?

Here are some signs to determine if one needs detoxification services:

  • Experience psychological episodes due to drug addiction— Drugs bring out emotional and psychological issues such as anxiety, depression, and irritability. When discontinuing use, these issues can quickly advance and become unmanageable. If this is the case, detox is necessary, as well as a dual- diagnosis treatment to address these issues.
  • Experience physical withdrawal symptoms–If one becomes physically ill upon immediate cessation of drug use, spontaneous detox is occurring. Depending on the drug used, physical withdrawal symptoms may sprout up immediately, with symptoms such as tremors, shaking, nausea, vomiting, stomach cramps, diarrhea or constipation, headaches, and muscle aches and pains. These can become so uncomfortable it can cause one to return to the drug to remedy the withdrawal symptoms. A medically supervised detox eases the symptoms.
  • Experience uncontrollable cravings–Addiction is a psychological as well as physical disease. Even if one experiences mild withdrawal symptoms, the compulsion to get high again can be overwhelming. With supervised drug detox, addicts receive support from medical professionals to ease the into the recovery process.
  • Continuous failed attempts to quit–Addiction is not a matter of will-power, it is a mental, physical, and spiritual malady. Despite one’s best intentions to stop using, the obsession drives them back to use. Some, however, try multiple times on their own to quit before realizing the inevitable: a medial disease requires medical treatment and for drug addiction, that medical treatment is drug detox
  • Have other medical issues in addition to a drug addiction–A monitored, controlled drug detox is necessary for those with other medical issues. Long-term, heavy users may not be aware that they have acquired health issues from their addiction without the help of doctors and a medical detox. Possible medical conditions include: heart disease, the beginning stages of liver or kidney failure, or other medical problems.

If these signs present themselves, one should quickly enter a drug rehab facility with a medically supervised detox program.

+What is addiction?

Addiction is a chronic, relapsing disease that affects those who have it physically, emotionally and psychologically. Despite having reasons to abstain from the substance or activity that the individual is addicted to, the addiction will compel him or her to keep doing it again and again. Regardless of all negative repercussions, the individual cannot control, maintain, or stop. Addiction is a progressive disease that only gets worse with time, if left untreated. The first time a person uses a substance, he or she may find that the effects are enjoyable. However, once the effects or the “high” of the substance wears off, he or she will begin to crave more. Over time, the individual will develop a dependency to the substance that is both physical and psychological. He or she will need more and more of the substance once he or she develops a tolerance to the drug. Thus begins the vicious cycle of dependency and addiction.

The Most Common Addictions

  • Alcoholism
  • Opiate or Heroin Addiction
  • Cocaine Addiction
  • Marijuana Addiction
  • Nicotine Addiction

The addictions listed above are some of the most common in the United States. These addictions can cause individuals to lose their will to stop using their drug of choice, despite the negative consequences that come with it. Professionals even go as far as to relate the obsession that comes wth addiction to insanity. Sadly, addiction can destroy the finances, sanity, health and morale of an individual. It can also strain relationships and affect those closest to the person with an addiction. Now that you know the answer to, “what is addiction?”, you should also know If you or someone you love is suffering with this disease. it’s important to get help sooner rather than later. Contact the Hills Treatment Center at 866-323-4665 to learn about our addiction treatment programs and how we can help you live the life you deserve.

+What do I do if I am Married to an Alcoholic?

Being married to an alcoholic is an intensely rough situation to be found in. The emotional, psychological, physical, and sexual abuse that may come along with living with an alcoholic can be overwhelming, and a solution can seem nonexistent. However, many people have lived with alcoholic spouses, and there a number of resources available.The first thing a spouse can do for an alcoholic husband or wife is to stop enabling them. Enabling allows the alcoholic to continue their behavior without seeing the consequences of their actions. Also, practicing less codependence goes a long way. For many spouses, this is a tough fact to deal with. They must not invest all their emotions on how their alcoholic spouse is behaving or feeling.

Many experts agree that the key to dealing with an alcoholic spouse begins with not blaming yourself, taking responsibility, or covering for your spouse’s actions. When a spouse can see that the alcoholic problem is not their fault nor responsibility, they can begin to provide more helpful support.

There are many resources for spouses of alcoholics that have helped many people find peace with their situation, and even save the marriage. Al-Anon is a popular twelve step group designed for family and loved ones of alcoholics. Members of the Al-Anon fellowship practice not giving so much power to the alcoholic in their life by not enabling, being codependent, and not permitting inappropriate behavior. The fellowship encourages members to stand their ground, create healthy boundaries, and not let their loved one’s alcoholism control their life.

There are also marriage counselors and therapists who specialize in this issue who can help. This is not a new predicament in our world. Both Al-Anon and specialized counseling offer experience. Many people have dealt with this situation before, and their experiences may prove to be the most useful tool you will find available.

+Are Kids and Teenagers too Young to be Alcoholics?

By the time a child graduates the eighth grade, it is more than likely they have tried alcohol. By high school graduation, about eighty percent of teenagers have tried alcohol at least once, and thirty percent binge drank in the past two weeks. Studies have shown that drinking before the age of 16 can cause serious alterations in brain chemistry and development.

Signs and Symptoms of Teen Alcoholism

As can be seen by the statistics, many teenagers experiment with alcohol, and put themselves at risk of developing alcoholism. Many parents have trouble differentiating between experimentation and alcoholism. A first warning sign of alcohol dependence may be when the child begins to lose interest in previously stimulating activities such as sports, hobbies, or a group of friends. Alcohol affects the pleasure receptors of the brain, and alters what the individual finds rewarding.

Children and teenagers are especially susceptible to the change in brain chemistry, as their brains are still developing. A brain developing while alcohol is being consumed causes the person to find alcohol the most rewarding thing in their life. The more alcohol that is consumed, the more the brain needs to achieve the same rewarding feeling.

As the child focuses on alcohol, they lose sight of important things in their life, such as school, family, hygiene, and safety. Addiction is characterized by the complete change in motivation that the individual has; where the person’s main motivational influence is to obtain or use the object of their addiction. The other parts of the teen’s life lose importance.

Teens who have progressed from experimentation to alcoholism often begin behaving recklessly. They may get themselves into dangerous situations, perform poorly in school or work, treat family and close friends poorly, and become angry when confronted. The symptoms begin to show as alcohol becomes more important to them than family, school, or safety.

Teen Alcohol Treatment

As the brain is developing during the teen years, alcohol abuse can be a major influence on the rest of the child’s life. The growing brain will value alcohol more and more, and lead the user into an alcoholic adulthood. Seeking treatment for a teen in question may save them from a long, hard journey. Alcoholism can definitely manifest in children and teens, and should not be discarded as just experimentation.

Teen alcohol treatment centers offer a break for the teen. They are able to escape from their daily lives, and find a better solution to their problems. They may identify factors that contributed to their alcoholism such as genetics, when they started drinking, emotional problems, psychological problems, and social problems. They are able to work with specialists to uncover triggers for their drinking and to come up with a relapse prevention plan.

If you think your teen is struggling with alcohol abuse, take a look at the symptoms they have presented. If their normal routine and performance is dwindling, you can do your child a great favor by seeking help for them.

+Can I drug test my child at home?

For parents who are dealing with a son or daughter who they suspect is abusing drugs or alcohol few options they can utilize for drug testing and breathalyzing.

Urine tests

There are at home drug-testing kits that test for specific drugs. Almost any pharmacy will have behind the counter drug tests that do not require a prescription. Most testing kits cost somewhere between $10.00 to $70.00. The testing kits for specific drugs include marijuana and cocaine. These kits will test only for those drugs. They are urine tests that take a few minutes for the results to appear. There are also drug testing kits that test for a range of drugs usually these will test for amphetamine, methamphetamine, cocaine, marijuana, ecstasy, and opiates. For the urine tests the results will take a few minutes. All these tests come with a guide with easy read results. As a general rule, the kits that test for more drugs are more expensive. Depending on the drug urine tests will only produce results if the drug was used within the past 1-30 days.

Hair tests

With hair test drug kits the results will need to be sent to a lab. These are more specific than urine tests and will test farther back then urine tests. In addition they indicate the level of using in each class or drugs, amphetamine, methamphetamine, cocaine, marijuana, ecstasy, and opiates. The test will indicate if the user is an infrequent or constant user and anything between those on the continuum. Results are available online after about 2-3 business days. These tests are generally more expensive than urine tests, about $40.00 to $100.00. There are express hair kits that will deliver results faster, however, they are more expensive. The advantage of a hair kit is a detailed analysis of the person’s drug history for the past 90 days.

Breathalyzers

Breathalyzers test the blood alcohol level of the individual. They only produce results for alcohol. They are small and portable, ranging from about $30.00 to $150.00. The person being tested blows into the tube and the Breathalyzer produces a result almost instantaneously. Anything above a 0.00 means the person has been drinking. Breathalyzers only test blood alcohol levels meaning that it will only produce results as long as alcohol is in the body. Depending on metabolism, generally the body metabolizes one drink an hour. The results are short-term.

False Positives

There are such things as false positives, especially if the directions are not read thoroughly and completely. Most of these tests are 99.9% accurate when used correctly. Especially when parents administer drug tests at home in haste and anger they are not administered correctly and the results are inconclusive. Take your time, do not rush, and familiarize yourself with the kit before you administer it. The best way to avoid error is to test again, just to make sure. With any test that is sent to the lab a false positive is extremely unlikely. The individuals reading and processing the results are trusted professionals and rarely make errors.

“Tricking” drug tests

There are many myths to tricking drug tests; the truth is that when the test is administered under ideal circumstances it is nearly impossible to trick. The best way to make sure that the individual is giving you the correct sample is to watch them do it. This often means going into the bathroom with them or collecting the hair sample yourself. This avoids any possibility of the individual using a sample from another individual. Some people try the online “detox” kits. They do not work. The detox kits generally make the person sick, however, they will not interfere with the drug tests results. Individuals may also think they can pass a urine test if they drink a lot of water. This is also not true, however, if they drink enough water they may produce inconclusive results on a urine test and need to be tested again in a few hours.

Pros and Cons of drug testing

Drug tests and breathalyzers are a great tool if you want to catch someone using; however, they tend to be ineffective in making people stop using. If your intention is to catch them in order to get them help drug tests are very effective. However, if the intention is to drug test every day so the individual will not use it will generally be an ineffective approach. When combined with another treatment plan such as a twelve-step program or a treatment center drug tests are a great tool to keep the individual accountable. Drug testing and breathalyzers are a short-term solution; they are good for getting people help initially, however, after a long period of sobriety the prior drug tests should establish some basic trust. The individual will not feel trusted or valued if they are told to drug test for long periods of time if they have long-term sobriety. Drug tests are a great tool in early sobriety to keep the individual accountable.

+How does addiction affect families?

Addiction has an effect on every individual who is close to the one abusing drugs or alcohol. Families are often the ones who suffer most when a relative is in active addiction. In the early stages the family may begin to blame themselves for what’s going on. They may start to believe they are one of the factors that perpetuate the drug use.They may even think they are the sole reason for what’s happening with the addict in their life.The communication beings to breakdown and can separate family members who were once a tight knit group. The family begins to take different sides instead of uniting in order to help the one suffering. In some situations families may feel shame or embarrassed about having an addict in their family. They may begin avoiding certain situations and isolating for fear of embarrassment. This is a clear indicator of how the disease of addiction can spread itself to the ones you love. Many think that the disease only lies within the individual suffering from it, but it has been shown over and over again to be a family disease.

The consequence of drug abuse among the family

Socially: Family members being to be more isolated and shameful of what’s going on. They may not partake in activities they used to in order to avoid questions or rumors they may be circulating. They also may not engage in activities they once enjoyed because they feel obligated to make sure the addict in their life is okay, fearing any day could be there last.

Psychologically: Family members who are consistently lied to lose trust and begin to attempt to uncover a lie in every situation. There thinking begins to change, expecting the worst out of every situation.

Emotionally: Living with an addict can be an emotional rollercoaster. It can take an individual who was once very stable to a place of grief and distress. This not only affects their home life but how they interact at work and in social situations.

Physically: The anxiety and stress of a family member in active addiction can have many adverse health effects including; Migraines, nausea, loss of appetite and even heart problems due to the stress levels.

+Is It My Fault My Child Is A Drug Addict?

For many parents who wake up to discover that their child suffers from drug addiction, the first question that comes to mind is “what did we do to cause this?” They have done their best to provide a loving home environment in which to grow up, give their child the best education and life opportunities, and provided the financial means for their child to live well and enjoy life. But drug addiction does not discriminate; anyone and everyone can be susceptible to substance abuse and alcoholism, regardless of background and upbringing.If you are a parent of a child suffering from drug addiction, the first thing you must accept is that it is not your fault. You did nothing to make your child use drugs as a means to cope with the stresses and obstacles in his or her life-you are off the hook. Just as your child is powerless of his or her drug abuse, you are powerless over treating and eradicating your child’s addiction.

In recovery, the family learns about the Three C’s of alcoholism and drug addiction. The first part of the Three C’s is the knowledge that you did not CAUSE your child’s addiction: your child did not start drinking or drugging because of you; he or she started using drugs and alcohol, most likely at an early age, because they are alcoholic, which means that they suffer from an allergy to the effects of alcohol and drugs on the body, the phenomenon of craving, and an obsession of the mind. Nothing you can say or do will change this.

The second part of the Three C’s is an understanding that you cannot CONTROL your child’s addictive behavior. You can share your feelings with your child, impose consequences to your child’s behaviors as a deterrent, and you can support your child by getting him or her into a treatment center. However, the decision to fully embrace treatment, recovery, and sobriety is one that only your child can make. Just as he or she must surrender to the fact that they are powerless over their addiction, you too must surrender to the fact that you are powerless over you child’s decisions and actions.

The Three C’s

The third and final part of the Three C’s is accepting that you cannot CURE your child’s addiction and alcoholism. Alcoholics and drug addicts remain forever so. They do, however, have the choice of living in the problem or living in the solution. Sending your child to a drug rehabilitation treatment center can be beneficial in helping him or her detox from drugs and alcohol and get healthy; enrolling your child in an outpatient drug program affords your child a safe place to process feelings and share with other addicts in recovery; renting a room in a sober living house provides a sober environment in which to adopt new habits and lifestyles.

Useful though these components of aftercare are, they ultimately will not cause your child to stay sober, control your child’s emotional well-being and impulsivity, or cure your child’s disease. Time does not treat drug addiction and alcoholism-and nor can you-but application of the twelve steps of recovery, as outlined and suggested in the Big Book of Alcoholics Anonymous, can provide a way for your child to live drug- and alcohol-free, one day at a time.

+Is the cost of drug rehab worth it?
Turning your life around is priceless. However, many require treatment in order to gain a solid foundation for recovery. The cost of drug rehab is actually less expensive than incarcerating those suffering from a drug addiction. Drug rehab is cost-effective in giving addicts an alternative to drug use and is associated health and social costs.

For example: The average cost for one full year of methadone maintenance treatment is approximately $4,700 per patient, whereas one full year of imprisonment costs approximately $18,400 per person.

Estimates have found that every $1 invested in drug rehab treatment programs yields a return of between $4 and $7 reduced drug-related crime, criminal justice costs, and theft alone. In relation to health care, total savings can exceed costs by a ratio of 12 to 1. Aside from saving the government money, the cost of drug rehab is also worth it for the person in recovery. Recovery is nearly impossible to achieve alone. Most people who suffer from addiction require some form of structured program in order to get well. Moreover, quality drug rehab provides more than just the ability to stop doing drugs or drinking alcohol.

Psychologically, overcoming an addiction provides peace of mind and the ability to think clearly again. In the long run, it may also save the person with an addiction money. Heroin addicts spend, on average, $100-$200 per day to feed their habit. Those who continue to abuse a drug like heroin will spend over $100,000 on the drug in three years—if they don’t experience an overdose first. 90 days of treatment will pay itself back quickly!

+Do I need to detox before I enter a treatment facility? Will it be easier or safer to detox in a facility? Is it better than doing it on my own?

In some cases, the question may arise if an addict should detox before going to a treatment facility. They may believe that they should do it on their own before getting involved with treatment, or think that their required to before entering a program. While some addicts take on the endeavor of “at home” detoxification it can be more dangerous and stressful than if they did so in a facility. Most drug rehabilitation centers help with this process and can adapt to your personal needs. Detoxing in a facility is the safest and most effective way to begin your recovery. Not only will they promote a safer and more comfortable detox, but being in a structured environment cuts down on the chance of relapse.

Many of those who try and do it on their own are unsuccessful. The withdrawal from drugs and alcohol is one of the toughest parts of early recovery. It can even be life threatening when coming off of certain drugs. Being in a facility with the care of nurses or staff is ideal for making the process as painless as possible. Most facilities will help you to deal with the physical symptoms of the withdrawal process with safe non-narcotic medications. The support of the clinical team in rehabilitation facilities is a big motivation when in early recovery. It is highly recommended, if possible, to detox in a facility. It will be a safer and more comfortable process than if one was to take it on alone.

+What is Enabling?

Enabling is a term often used when discussing alcoholics or addicts and their relationships with their family. People who love the addict may find it difficult to differentiate between helping and drug enabling, and may need help seeing which term more appropriately describes their actions.

Drug Enabling vs. Helping

Helping someone is conducive to their health, whereas enabling is not. Helping an addict or alcoholic includes actions that help them see the consequences of their actions, and maybe preventing them from going further down the road of despair.

Drug enabling is often mistaken as helping. The difference is in the realistic helpfulness of the actions. When enabling, the things done for the addict are things that the addict can and should do for themselves. It also prevents the addict from seeing the true consequences of their  actions, and the full scope of their disease.

Enabling actions are actually hurtful to the addict. Common examples of drug enabling are continuing to finance an addict, providing a home, offering emotional support, and sweeping the issues at hand under the rug. These actions prevent the addict from experiencing the life they are creating for themselves. Enablers often believe they are helping the addict from falling too far, which is actually true. However, it takes many addicts a long drop to see that they have a problem.