What Happens in Meth Addiction Treatment Centers
Meth is one of the strongest stimulant drugs in existence. According to the National Drug Intelligence Center, a single dose of meth sends the central nervous system into overdrive, placing considerable strain on brain and body functions.
When used on a regular basis, meth essentially destroys brain cells, bone mass and muscle tissue over time. Not surprisingly, a meth addiction can be one of the hardest addictions to overcome. Meth addiction recovery facilities help addicts break the drug’s physical hold over their bodies while helping to restore their psychological health in the process.
Unlike other forms of addiction, there are no known medication therapies capable of treating the damage caused by meth addiction. For this reason, meth abuse rehab facilities place a heavy emphasis on providing recovering addicts with the types of psychosocial supports needed to live a drug-free lifestyle. As meth’s damaging effects can stay with a person for years to come, relapse prevention training becomes a big part of the methamphetamine rehabilitation centers approach.
The Meth Abuse Treatment Process
According to the National Institute on Drug Abuse, the widespread damage caused by meth addiction requires an oftentimes lengthy treatment process to give recovering addicts the best chance at a successful recovery. The treatment process starts at the detox stage, which can be an excruciating experience when necessary treatment supports are lacking.
Methamphetamine recovery centers administer medications to help relieve uncomfortable withdrawal effects, some of which include:
- Severe Depression
- Schizophrenic-Like Psychoses
- Suicidal Tendencies
- Prolonged Sleep Periods
After addiction detox treatment, a residential addiction program should be the next step in the treatment process. These programs run anywhere from 30 to 90 days. During this time, recovering addicts live at the facility for the duration of the program. Upon completion, ongoing outpatient addiction care offers scheduled, weekly treatment sessions that provide addicts with the necessary tools for living a drug-free lifestyle in the “real world.”
Psychosocial Addiction Support
Meth abuse treatment facilities offer psychosocial supports throughout all stages of the treatment process. Long-term meth use in particular causes considerable damage to areas of the brain that regulate impulse control. Psychosocial supports involve behavioral therapy treatments designed to help addicts better manage their impulses and emotions on a day-to-day basis.
According to the National Institute on Drug Abuse, behavioral therapies use conditioning techniques as a way to motivate participants to maintain abstinence. Some therapies use incentive reinforcements, such as coupons for local events and activities to encourage ongoing abstinence behaviors.
Relapse Prevention Training
Meth’s damaging effects on brain functions can drive a person to relapse at any time. This means someone who’s been drug-free for years can still fall prey to drug cravings. For this reason, meth addiction treatment centers spend a great deal of time helping recovering addicts develop relapse prevention strategies.
Relapse Prevention Training
- Developing strategies for replacing drug-using behaviors with fun and/or productive activities and pursuits.
- Identifying environmental cues that trigger drug using behaviors, such as certain places, certain people and certain activities or events.
- Learning how meth affects a person’s thinking and behavioral processes.
After a person completes drug abuse treatment, ongoing attendance at 12-Step support group meetings picks up where the treatment program leaves off in terms of keeping him or her engaged in the recovery process.