Drug addiction is a chronic, relapsing illness that affects millions of Americans every year. From marijuana and alcohol to prescription medications and methamphetamine, drug addiction is not picky on who it chooses. People of all ages, sex, gender, and social class are affected by the disease, and many are not able to recover.
Drug Addiction Treatment
Those who are able to admit they have a problem with drugs or alcohol have taken the first step towards their recovery. Denial is one of the biggest hurdles to overcome for an addict, as their brain blames problems on everything but drugs. Following admission of a problem being present, a treatment center is generally the next step. For some individuals, a medical detox may be necessary depending upon drug of choice, frequency of use, and date of last dose. Many residential treatment centers have an on-site detox facility.
Although residential treatment programs are a great way to begin the road to recovery from addiction, experts agree that continuing care is vital to maintaining sobriety. Some addicts choose to attend an outpatient treatment program after completing a residential program. At an outpatient facility, the client attends therapy and groups that are similar to those in residential centers, except they are allowed to leave after groups.
Transitional Living Centers
One of the most helpful things a recovering addict can do for themselves is to live at a transitional living for a period during early sobriety. When people hear the term transitional living communities, they often think of the infamous halfway houses. Halfway houses are transitional livings that are county-funded, and often serve as an alternative sentencing for those in jail.
Sober living homes are private transitional living facilities that house newly sober addicts in a safe, constructive environment. Living sober is a new and challenging experience. At sober living homes, anywhere from three or four addicts to twenty addicts live in a house or apartment complex with a manager to oversee their safety. Often, the residents are drug tested regularly and at random, have a nightly curfew, and are required to maintain cleanliness and do chores. Responsibility and accountability are taught through these requirements, and the addicts are slowly reintegrated back into the real world.
Though each transitional living house is different, some have required lengths of stay in order to complete the program. At many, the residents must attend a certain amount of twelve-step meetings a week. Some provide therapy, groups, meals, and morning meditation meetings. As the sober living house is only a residence for the individual, they are able to carry on with their daily life, whether it be school, work, or family obligations. At night, they are able to return to a recovery-oriented environment.
Sober livings provide the level of continuing care that enables many addicts and alcoholics to recover fully from their addiction. Returning directly home after treatment may be triggering and dangerous, but a sober living allows the person to grow accustomed to their newly sober lifestyle, and to find new healthy coping mechanisms.