Addiction is a serious medical problem, but people are often reluctant to seek help for it. There are a huge number of treatment options, from recovery groups to extended rehab plans, but none of them can do anything until the patient takes the first step of seeking them out. At that stage, the best thing that a friend can do is to help them reach out towards a recovery program.
1- Researching Treatments
There are so many different treatment options available that it can be difficult for patients to research all of their options on their own. It can be helpful for their friends or family to share the workload by looking up the methods, their benefits, and their drawbacks. That makes sure that the patients can make informed decisions about their own treatment, without making the process take so long that they become discouraged and give up.
2- Finding Locations
Even people who have settled on a treatment option need to spend a great deal of time researching the possible locations for their treatment, according to Health & Wellness Medical Center. For example, those who want to attend a rehab clinic need to research all of the clinics in their area. Their friends can also help with this process by making a list of the options, along with as much information about each one as they can find.
3- Practical Support
It is often possible to help addicts on the road to recovery by handling simple, mundane tasks when they are unable to do so. Even offering to give them a ride to a clinic when their own vehicle is unavailable can make a big difference if it makes it possible for them to get the help that they need. It can also be useful during the recovery process, especially during outpatient procedures, since they can take up a lot of time and lead to the patient falling behind in other areas.
4- Boosting Morale
Getting treated for an addiction is always stressful, and not just because withdrawal is unpleasant. Addiction is a mental health problem, and it can be very difficult to face mental issues during treatment. That causes many individuals to become frustrated, or even to give up on the procedure when it becomes too much for them. Some people can deal with the stress on their own, but most people need support from their friends and families in order to succeed and overcome their addiction. Providing that support is one of the most useful things that a person can do for a friend that is trying to recover from any type of addiction.
5- Explaining Consequences
Individuals who suffer from addiction are not always aware of the problems that their addiction can cause both to themselves and to the other people in their lives. Explaining those problems can often help to motivate them to seek treatment, but it needs to be done with care. Aggressive accusations will do much more harm than good, since they often destroy relationships which make recovery less likely in the long run. Instead, it’s important to as gentle and understanding as possible while giving the explanation.
6- Removing Temptation
It’s always possible to fall back into old habits during the recovery process. The best way to prevent that is to remove the opportunity to do so, by getting rid of any tempting substances or activities in the patient’s life. Most people have trouble doing this on their own, but their friends can do so for them. Getting rid of the object of the addiction will remove opportunities to make mistakes, which will make the recovery process much more likely to succeed.
7- Direct Intervention
Removing temptation isn’t always enough. The world is full of it, and it isn’t always possible to eliminate every chance to make a mistake. Friends can help to solve that problem by keeping an eye on the patient and intervening when they start to make a mistake. They can also suggest pleasant and healthy alternatives that can serve as distractions in order to make the temptation seem less appealing. Combining this technique with the other methods, along with treatment from professionals, can greatly increase an addict’s odds of recovery.