Substance Abuse Treatment

What is Substance Abuse?

Substance abuse refers to the pathological, long-term use of alcohol and recreational drugs. It is marked by regular intoxication, impairment in occupational and social functioning, as well as being unable to stop/reduce consumption.

Drug dependence, addiction, and alcoholism are together known as substance abuse disorders. They are highly complex issues. People suffering from addiction were once thought to have a moral weakness or a character defect. Many still believe that.

But, medical researchers and scientists are now considering drug addiction and alcoholism to be a result of some kind of long-term trauma and even illness like blood pressure and diabetes. Most people who drink in moderation can stop consuming alcohol without struggle. However, those who develop dependence can become compulsive and dangerous to themselves as well as others.

For such people, substance abuse treatment is the best option.

Symptoms of Substance Use Disorder?

The single most common sign of drug dependence and substance addiction is an uncontrolled urge to do drugs and consume alcohol despite facing serious negative consequences. Such a person would often blame others or the circumstances for his problems rather than realising the repercussions of his actions.

For instance, a person may feel that he/she was fired from a job because their bosses didn’t know how to run their business. Similarly, a person may believe that they got a ticket for DUI because the cops were chasing them. It’s not uncommon for people with this disorder to blame those around them. They may even think they are not drinking normally. It’s called being in denial which is a part of this disorder.

Other common symptoms include –

  • Developing tolerance – The person would need an increasingly bigger amount of drugs and alcohol to get the same high. 
  • Cravings – A strong desire, need, or urge to do drugs or alcohol is common even when this desire leads to severe consequences. The person will become irritable, angry, and anxious if he/she fails to use them. Craving is another most common symptom of substance abuse.
  • Loss of Control – The person may lose control over how much he/she should be drinking. Such a person may even do drugs in highly inappropriate places or timings. They may fail to stop drinking even if they tried.
  • Withdrawal Symptoms and Physical Dependence – A person addicted to drugs may experience severely uncomfortable withdrawal symptoms if they do decide to stop doing drugs. Signs of physical dependence include shakiness, sweating, nausea, and extreme anxiety. Often the person would try to relieve these symptoms by indulging more in drugs which creates a vicious cycle.

Types of Common Treatment Programs Available –

Inpatient Treatment

Medical clinics and hospitals maintain special units to provide inpatient treatment where patients can go through addiction-related treatments like rehab and detox services. Hospital-based treatments existed a few years ago. But, due to changes in insurance policies; inpatient treatment programs are not as common as they used to be. 

People with co-occurring disorders and some other medical issues are most likely to receive inpatient dual diagnosis treatment in California. 

Residential Programs

These programs house all the necessary services and a conducive environment for drug treatment. They follow several treatment models like a therapeutic community. The treatment programs can last anywhere from a month to even a year. 

Programs may be different in a few ways, but for the most part, share a lot of similarities. The treatment often goes through phases with different goals, activities, and expectations for each phase. The first phase typically involves restricting contact with friends, family, and jobs.

In the case of adolescence, contact with parents may be allowed but not with school. The restriction is important for the person to cut off with his old life that often serves as triggers. It also helps with better adjustment to the new life.

Partial Hospitalisation or Day Treatment

Day treatment programs and partial hospitalisation are given in hospitals and freestanding clinics. As part of the program, a person goes through 4-8 hours of treatment every day but they stay at home. Such programs typically last for about 3 months. They are perfect for people who have a supportive and stable home environment.

Outpatient and Intensive Outpatient Programs

Both of these programs are provided at a certain site. However, the person has to live somewhere else; typically at home. Outpatient treatment can be given in several places. For example, community health clinics, mental health communities, health clinics, hospitals, local health departments, counsellor’s offices, and outpatient clinics. 

Patients typically meet on the weekends/evenings so they can go back to work/school. Different outpatient programs come with a unique set of attendance requirements. Some programs only require meeting once or thrice a week while others require daily attendance.

Methadone clinics (also called opioid treatment programs)

Methadone clinics also go by opioid treatment programs. They offer medically-assisted programs to people struggling with opioid drugs like Vicodin, OxyContin, and heroin. These programs use medications like LAAM and methadone to help with opioids. Over the counter drugs along with counselling may also be given.

Does Insurance Cover Drug & Alcohol Rehab in California?

Yes, it does. You can find plenty of rehabs in California that accept all kinds of insurance plans including out-of-state and in-state. Over half the rehabs in California accept private insurance. More than 80% accept self-payment and cash. Over 30% accept Medicaid. And, more than 60% will offer you a sliding scale payment program.

Do Rehab Centers in California Treat Alcohol and Drug Addiction?

Yes. The rehab centers in California treat addictions like alcohol, stimulant medications, heroin, prescription opioids, cocaine, and many other illegal opioids. Many centres even provide treatment for co-occurring disorders and behavioural addiction.

How to Find the Best Drug and Alcohol Treatment Center in California?

To find the best drug and alcohol rehab centers in California, you need to talk with your doctor first. He/she will suggest to you what kind of program will be best for your needs and the duration of the program.

After that, you can go to Google and do a quick query. Pay special attention to reviews. It also pays to ask around friends and relatives. Always shortlist a couple of options before finalising the best ones.

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