Health & Fitness

Why Therapy Is Essential in Treating Addiction  

Battling an addiction also means battling the root causes of addiction. Addicted individuals usually have underlying reasons that addiction occurred. No matter what the substance used, any drugs or alcohol will temporarily eliminate the pain and empty feelings that plague most addicts.

Buried memories of traumatic events can cause emotional pain and emptiness and only therapy can uncover the root causes many times as the individual who is addicted is not aware of the traumas. Human brains can use the subconscious mind to eliminate memories of serious traumas. Even a stressful home life, job environment, or loneliness can lead to addiction as well as psychological pain can take many forms.

Therapy towards Complete Recovery

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According Addiction-Rehab-Toronto, the therapy can include one on one therapy as well as group therapy. An addict might stay at a sober living facility for some time and will receive therapy there or be taken to it by a counselor. There is no timeline for the therapy as each addiction and each addicted individual needs different treatment.

Many addicts can suffer from severe depression or bipolar disorder, borderline personality disorder, and a host of other disorders. Some suffer from more than one mental disorder. Therapy can combine many approaches with some therapists using a hypnotic state if buried memories are the addiction triggers, while talk therapy and simply getting individual emotions out with suggestions on coping with life in another manner are crucial to good therapy.

Therapy prevents relapse in the following ways:

  • Addiction can cause changes in the brain and emotions and the suggestions of a good therapist can help “rewire” the neural pathways that the addiction and underlying causes have created.
  • Techniques are taught during therapy to combat cravings as substance cravings cause relapse many times.
  • Therapy generally uses relaxation techniques as well as meditation to teach a recovered addict how to take control of negative thoughts and negative emotions. These are considered alternative treatments.
  • Talk therapy and cognitive behavioral therapy are usually used as well and these therapies work best with PTSD (Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder) patients, as well as alcoholics as trauma-based addiction to alcohol is common.
  • A treatment plan is laid out by a therapist during therapy with goals and objectives is always provided and the recovering addict is expected to meet these goals and objectives and show up for appointments as therapy is crucial after overcoming addiction.
  • A new approach to dealing with problems is generally taught during therapy. If a recovered addict does not go to therapy the chances of relapse are increased as the root problems are not addressed.

Addiction therapy is necessary as an addict’s brain has learned to enjoy drugs or alcohol

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The human brain has a portion that is called the limbic system and it sends signals of pleasure to everyone. Drugs and/or alcohol do increase the pleasurable sensations and decrease pain and anxiety as well as stress. This is how addiction occurs, as the addicted individual’s brain then constantly seeks the pleasurable sensations brought on by drugs or alcohol. Many individuals also suffer from “cross-addictions” and are addicted to several substances. These individuals need therapy most of all as they are battling more than one craving all the time.

While a detox center will deal with the medical issues presented in withdrawal, even after successful withdrawal, the cravings are difficult for former addicts to overcome. Families are oftentimes included in the therapy after withdrawal as exposure to triggers, stress, or worse yet drugs or alcohol can cause anyone to relapse even if clean and sober for years. Family counseling is especially important if a toxic environment is within a home. Some recovered addicts are advised to leave their homes, friends, and surroundings if too much temptation and a toxic environment exists.

Addiction therapy is now covered by many insurance companies

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It was not many years ago but with the upswing in addiction now, especially alcohol and opioids; it is proving cheaper to address addiction problems through therapy than for individuals to be admitted to hospitals routinely for overdose or other problems caused by their addiction. Only a therapy center that specializes in therapies for addicts should be seen, however.

Opioids and alcohol can be treated very differently by a therapist than by someone addicted to methamphetamine and cocaine. Reputable therapy centers should be found where the approach is targeted like this to see success in overcoming addiction. Addicts many times feel so good after overcoming an addiction that they do not feel the need for therapy. This is incorrect, however, a support group that understands addiction can assist throughout an addict’s life. Especially with alcoholism, where temptation is everywhere, Alcoholics Anonymous is usually attended by an addict for life.

Therapy for addiction is necessary as it provides in-person socialization also

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Addiction counseling therapists are specially trained and know the best approaches for each addict. Group therapy and one on one therapy with an actual therapist are generally calming experiences, with others that are also facing addiction issues. In other words, an addict feels at home with others who are also struggling while at their home there might not be anyone who can understand the volume of emotions that come to the surface after rehabilitation from drugs or alcohol occurs. Many addiction counselors, especially the ones that run the group counseling sessions, have been addicts themselves so can empathize more completely having lived the addiction experiences themselves.

The longer an addiction continues the harder it is to stop using a substance, and the longer it will take for an addict to receive enough therapy to consider themselves out of harm’s way. Although many online therapy centers exist now, the goal of an addict is to remain clean and sober. While video or phone therapy can work for mild problems, addiction is not a mild problem, and finding a certified therapist in addiction who can be seen in person is the best choice for anyone who is in recovery.

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