Millions of people struggle with substance abuse each year. The results from the 2015 National Survey on Drug Use and Health indicate that approximately 20.8 million people in the age group 12 and above had a substance use disorder (SUD) in the past year, including 15.7 million people with an alcohol use disorder (AUD) and 7.7 million people with an illicit drug use disorder. Since the magnitude of this problem is huge due to the life-disruptive consequences, one needs to make sincere efforts toward staying clean and sober. The entire process of recovery begins with the users acknowledging that he or she has a problem and therefore assistance is necessary to fight addiction.
In several cases, challenges of the entire recovery process dissuade people from undergoing the recovery process. It’s mostly family members and friends who force their loved ones into getting enrolled into rehabilitation centers to achieve sobriety. When a loved one is going through the phase of addiction to substances, it is very important for the people close to them, such as family members and friends, to recognize the fact that addiction is a medical problem. Moreover, they should treat them as they would treat someone suffering from any other kind of chronic illness, such as diabetes, heart ailments, etc. Additionally, one can implement other result-driven effective measures in his or her daily life to alleviate problems.
Ways to encourage recovering patients to achieve sobriety
Achieving meaningful and long-lasting sobriety is a process and not a life event. Moreover, it is not at all easy to remain firm on this journey to sobriety for most of the people going through substance abuse. However, it can be made easier by the presence of well-meaning friends and family members who take the trouble to understand how best to help their loved one achieve the goal of sobriety and stay on course. People living in close proximity to the patients trying to recover from addiction need to be sensitive about how to approach and what to say during their interactions with them. Some of the points that every person should keep in mind while engaging with the recovering patients are as follows:
- Accepting the person without judgment: Since many recovering patients feel judged by their families and friends, one should refrain from making any kind of criticism and negative remarks as much as possible. Instead, one should try demonstrating his or her care and affection toward the patient through actions and words. People close to the patient should try appreciating his or her decision to seek assistance and treatment to achieve sobriety.
- Creating a substance-free environment: As far as possible, social situations should be avoided where alcohol or other substances are likely to be served, as well as stay away from old friends with whom one used to do drugs or indulge in drinks. These risky situations are full of temptation for developing addiction again. All illicit substances and other drug paraphernalia should be removed from the vicinity of the recovering person.
- Listening actively: While on the recovery path, people need someone to confide in and share their feelings with release their frustrations. By sharing their innate fears, one can easily walk resolutely toward sobriety.
- Encouraging healthy distractions: Cooking food, gardening, exercising, playing a sport, caring for a pet, etc. are all therapeutic activities that can help a person in keeping his or her mind away from substances.
- Joining a group: As all members of a support group are in the various stages of recovery, each member by sharing their experiences and providing valuable insight into their journey thus far can assist a recovering patient in enduring the struggle.
- Developing patience: As recovery is a long and complicated process, people often run the risk of messing up the journey that can result in a relapse. Therefore, one needs to develop immense patience to never give up hope.
Recovering road map
Many people who decide to get help for their addiction might think that detox and rehab are the only parts of the recovery process, but it is only the beginning. Recovering from an addiction is a lifelong process and the entire goal of staying sober demands commitment and determination. If you or your loved one is battling addiction to any kind of substance, contact the Texas Substance Abuse Helpline to access the best substance abuse treatment centers in Texas. Call us at our 24/7 helpline number 866-971-2658 or chat online to know more about the substance abuse treatment programs in Texas.