Problems with drinking or drug abuse can impact every area of your life. It can make it difficult to advance in your career or even keep a job. It can interfere with your relationships. It can make it hard for you to maintain the progress you have made in getting your life back together.
If you have had trouble with drugs or alcohol, there are a number of approaches you can try to end the cycle. Everyone's experience is different, and different approaches will be more effective for different people. For most people, a combination of treatments will be best. Some of what is available:
Going Cold Turkey
The first method most people try when they want to quit drugs or alcohol is going cold turkey. It has a lot of apparent advantages. People are drawn to this approach because it is private and requires nothing but willpower. No meetings or disruptive residential programs are involved.
However, going cold turkey also has a lower success rate than organized substance abuse treatment options. According to some experts, only between 20 and 25% of people who try to stop by going cold turkey manage to stay clean.
12 Step Programs
Alcoholics Anonymous and other meeting-based programs use the power of peer support and storytelling to help people with addictions stay clean. In these programs, alcholism is viewed as a lifelong disease that can only be treated and never cured. Most proponents of meeting-based treatments say that consistent attendance is key. Participants stay sober by checking in with mentors and attending meetings on a regular basis.
Going to Rehab
If you have not had luck getting sober on your own, it may be time to look into a rehab program. Some programs have out-patient programs, while others involve residential treatment for weeks or months at a time. Programs often begin with detox and move on to incorporate psychological treatment and addiction counseling. There are programs that can cater to specific groups of people such as age-based programs or ones that are all male or all female. Research has shown that programs that address a range of needs are the most effective.
If you struggle with a substance abuse problem, there are many types of assistance available. Don't be afraid to reach out and accept the help that is offered.