What Do Addicts Need to Recover?

Last Updated: Sep 20th 2019

Reviewed by Brittany Polansky

Every single person suffering from an addiction to drugs or alcohol needs a different recovery plan. We believe that each patient is unique and brings with them their own personal struggles, talents, resilience and story at our detox Broward County drug rehab facility. Each person is intricate. But there are a few certain things that every single addict across the board needs in order to recover from addiction and start a new sober way of living.

  1. They need to be in the right mind to know they have a problem and want to reach recovery to begin with:

It has become a cliche at this point, but it is still true that in order to begin the recovery process a person suffering from a chemical dependence and psychological addiction to an intoxicating substance must first admit to themselves that they have an addiction. If they are unable to admit this to themselves they will never take the next step in seeking out help, and even if it were forced to seek out treatment or it was offered openly to them, they would never accept the help or successfully complete the recovery program set before them. Successfully entering treatment requires the consent of the patient who will be going through what is usually a grueling set of steps to recovery. Consent, and true motivation, because even if the person in question does indeed succeed in sobering up, if they didn’t really believe to begin with that they suffer from an addiction, one that they are unable to walk away from of their own free will, then they will inevitably pick back up their bad habits again after they leave their residential detox.  

  1. They need to seek treatment:

After a person suffering from a substance use disorder comes to terms with their substance addiction and the fact that they suffer from a chronic disease of alcohol or drug addiction, admits this fact to themselves freely and without hesitation, the next step toward active recovery that the addict must take is to admit just as readily to someone else that they need help and suffer from addiction. This can be one of the most difficult tasks of a person’s life. The stigma surrounding addiction in our society is heavy. It is scary to tell anyone at all that you need help as you suffer from addiction because it is often someone that the person loves whom they first talk to about their problem. An addict is told by society that they are bad, criminal, lazy, or stupid. It can feel to them like an admission of these things to tell someone they suffer from addiction. It can feel like they are admitting to someone they care about that they have failed and disappointed those they love. As treatment becomes more available and as addiction is more and more studied the stigma on addiction has started to lift. Hopefully soon not a single person will have to feel embarrassed or afraid to come forward for help.

  1. They need to have a strong support system:

When a person suffering from alcohol or drug addiction takes the above steps and gets help the important thing they must know and those who care about them must know is that over anything else throughout continuing treatment, a person suffering from addiction needs a strong support system in their court. Friends and family of those who suffer from this chronic disease may feel put in the hot seat unduly. They didn’t ask for this. Maybe they don’t want the responsibility and heartache that can come with trying to support an addict. It can be intimidating and downright scary for someone to feel responsible for supporting an addict through recovery. It can feel like a wooden roller coaster, all jerking starts and stops and instead of a sense of joy at the end, a sense of relief or terror. Indeed, many people find themselves in this position and feel embittered by it.  It is true that they did not choose this addiction but it is also important for those people to know that neither did the person afflicted with the addiction. Though they likely very desperately want to do so, they cannot shut off their draw to the intoxicant that they are addicted to. Addiction is a chronic disease for which there can be no cure. It is not possible for them to shut down a chemical dependence without real medical detox and treatment and even then the addiction will lurke in the background waiting for a moment to come out of remission. As depressing as it may sound, someone suffering from addiction will be staring down relapse for the duration of their lives. However, it is not even close to a hopeless journey, though it is indeed a difficult one. With a strong support structure behind them someone will be able to phone a friend in the middle of the night when they’ve been triggered by a dream, or when they’ve had a bad day and desperately want a something to make them forget.

 

It should be noted that if someone does not want to be a support to the addict, it is vital to distance themselves. If there is a history of abuse or a relationship gone bad with the addict, it is absolutely the right of either side to decide that they are not the right person to support the addict or that the addict wants to support them. A support system must be made up of people who genuinely want to actively support. Being there for someone even when it doesn’t feel safe or you feel bitter will not only not help the other person, it will hurt you.

 

No one is the same, but everyone needs help to succeed at recovery. Addicts can find themselves and a support network too, at 1st Step Behavioral Health. During their residential detox and rehabilitation they will meet people whom they will know for years to come. Those who will become their friends and accountability. They will go through a program where they will learn more about themselves than they did before and then they will learn how to use that knowledge as a weapon against their addiction. Together with their friends and family and their 1st Step family, recovery is within sight.

Call us today.

Reviewed for Medical & Clinical Accuracy by Brittany Polansky

Brittany PolanskyBrittany has been working in behavioral health since 2012 and is a Primary Clinician at our facility. She is an LCSW and holds a master’s degree in social work. She has great experience with chemical dependency and co-occurring mental health diagnoses as well as various therapeutic techniques. Brittany is passionate about treating all clients with dignity and respect, and providing a safe environment where clients can begin their healing journey in recovery.