There are a number of different types of treatment for alcoholism and drug addiction; some have been shown to work much better than others.
With the exception of extreme cases which would make such factors as intervention and close monitoring necessary for the health, safety, and well-being of the individual or others, the best method of treatment involves the person getting the help he needs in dealing with his problem, while not being cut off from his general everyday life.
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In this manner, the person does not lose sight of the fact that daily life goes on and he is to be a part of it, while at the same time being able to give his recovery process the attention that it needs.
For most alcoholics and addicts, Twelve-Step meetings and mental health counseling provide sufficient basis for recovery.
With these aids, he can begin to deal with both his substance dependency and the emotional or mental factors which also cause him difficulties.
As it is a common problem for some people to become entirely too dependent on his or her “Program” to the extent that he or she has little life beyond it, mental health counseling can assist the person in achieving the necessary balance.
For example, if the person does not associate with anyone who is not “in the Program,” or his everyday vocabulary consists almost solely of 12-Step Program slang, or if he cannot make even the most basic decisions in his daily life without checking it out with his
Sponsor, these are clear indicators that he does not have the necessary balance in his life. While for a recovering alcoholic or addict their program plays a very important role in his life, it is essential that he know that life itself is not a program.
The recovering alcoholic or addict needs to have his own role in his own life. Depending on the individual and his circumstances, this includes such factors as holding a job or running one’s household.
While those who have just begun recovery are cautioned to not make any major life-altering decisions or changes during his or her first year of sobriety due to the risk of making impulsive decisions, this should not come to mean that the person should see it as a “vacation” from life, nor to either give or allow other people the position of dealing with his life for him.
Unless the person is incapacitated by his alcohol or drug use or connected problems, keeping his life as normal as possible when undertaking the stressful process of recovery is the best possible course of action; for the individual to be isolated from his own life and the real world not only is not in his best interests, but can generate many more problems than he had to begin with.
The principle of not making any significant changes in one’s life sums it up: the person who wishes the best possible chance for recovery from his alcohol or drug addiction will have the best foundation if he continues to take an active role in his everyday life.
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