Prescription Drug Addiction Rehab Programs
According to the National Institute on Drug Abuse, as of 2010, an estimated 2.7 percent of American adults reportedly use prescription drugs for recreational purposes. While prescription abuse has been around for a long time, this 2.7 percent estimate represents a 300 percent increase in rates within the last ten years alone.
Prescription drug addictions can involve opiates, stimulants, sedatives or tranquilizers. Prescription drug addiction programs employ various methods for helping recovering addicts overcome an addiction habit. Medication therapies, behavioral therapies and pain management treatments are just some of the treatment approaches used to treat prescription drug addictions.
Prescription Drug Addictions
Prescription drugs fall within the Schedule II and Schedule III classes of controlled substances, according to the U. S. Department of Justice. Both drug classes carry a high potential for abuse and addiction.
Prescription drugs target the body’s central nervous functions. Opiates, sedatives and tranquilizers depress or slow down the central nervous system, while stimulants speed up these processes.
As these types of drugs have mind-altering effects, prescription drug addictions can cause considerable damage to a person’s psychological and physical health. With so many varieties of drug types, prescription drug addiction rehab programs can vary in the types of addictions they treat.
When used on a frequent basis, opiate-type drugs actually take over brain chemical processes because of their close resemblance to brain neurotransmitter chemicals. With opiate addictions in particular, prescription drug addiction programs can administer specialized medication therapies designed to reduce the degree of drug cravings and withdrawal effects addicts experience.
Medications commonly used in treatment include:
These drugs vary in their effects in terms of whether a particular drug targets withdrawal effects, drug cravings or both. As of yet, no approved medication therapies exist to treat stimulant, sedative or tranquilizer addictions.
Addictions, in general, involve both a physical and psychological dependency. While medication therapies and detox do address the physical dependency component, behavioral therapies enable recovering addicts to work through the psychological aspect of addiction.
Behavioral therapies form an essential part of the treatment process regardless of the type of prescription drug addiction involved. Behavioral therapies commonly used include:
- Cognitive-behavioral therapy
- Emotive therapy
- Contingency management
- The Matrix Model
Since it’s not uncommon for prescription drug addicts to also suffer from co-existing psychological problems, behavioral therapy treatment helps recovering addicts get to the root of their addiction problems.
Pain Management Treatment
Many people struggling with prescription drug addictions start out taking prescriptions to treat pain-related conditions. When this is the case, drug rehab programs offer alternative pain management treatments while helping recovering addicts overcome addiction.
Alternative pain management treatments can vary depending on a person’s condition and treatment needs. Alternative pain treatment approaches use non-opiate based medications and techniques to help alleviate pain symptoms. Alternative approaches may include:
- Relaxation therapies
- Non-narcotic pain relievers
As opiates have played a central role in keeping pain symptoms in check, most rehab programs also implement a tapering process designed to help wean addicts off opiate effects.