Drug Addiction and Treatment Options in Rhode Island
Rhode Island is among the top states with the highest substance use cases among people aged 12 years and above. Most people in this state abuse cocaine, heroin, marijuana, and prescription drugs.
Many people start using drugs to fill a void in their lives caused by traumas, stress, or relationship issues. Others use substances to derive euphoric feelings or to impress their peers. People struggling with inadequacy may also use drugs to boost performance or self-confidence. Some people may develop dependency unwillingly after using prescription drugs for a long time.
Addiction is a complex illness that needs commitment and a strong will to quit. Fortunately, you can regain sobriety with the right treatment plan and support. In fact, 75% of people who seek addiction treatment recover. The guide below provides comprehensive information about addiction to help you make an informed choice.
What Is a Substance Use Disorder?
Any time you take an illegal substance or use a legal drug in ways other than the prescribed, you are abusing it. This includes taking a higher dose of a medicine or using another person’s pills.
When you start using drugs, you may feel like you have control over the substance intake and can stop whenever you please. But over time, the substances alter the brain’s reward system. Under normal circumstances, the body produces dopamine to regulate body movement and control motivation, focus, mood, and memory. Once you use large quantities of drugs for a prolonged period, they flood your brain with dopamine. In large quantities, the hormone creates feelings of reward and pleasure which result in behavioral responses like repeated drug use.
As you continue taking the substances, they naturally lower your brain’s ability to produce dopamine. It becomes increasingly difficult to do without the drug. Things you previously enjoyed, like hanging out with friends or hobbies, start giving you less pleasure. At this point, you have already developed a substance use disorder. Your loved ones may be addicted to drugs if they depict any of the following signs.
• Neglecting responsibilities
• Intense urge to use drugs
• Trouble concentrating
• Sudden change in friends
• Unexplainable change in mood
• Abnormal weight loss
• Change in sleeping patterns
• Decreased grooming habits
• Frequent collisions with authorities
• Poor physical coordination
Dangers of Addiction
Once you take a drug for a long period, your body develops tolerance, in that you will need to take more of the substance to derive similar effects. This can push you to take drugs beyond your limit, increasing the risk of overdose. Overdose death rates in Rhode Island increased by about 28.1% between 2019 and 2020, based on research. Some common signs of drug overdose include.
• Dilated pupils
• Abnormally high temperature
• Drowsiness and confusion
• Pale face
• Loss of consciousness
• Erratic pulse
• Gurgling sounds
Using drugs for a long period may also damage vital organs like kidneys, heart, and the brain. They may also affect your performance at school, sports, work, or other activities. People are likely to hurt themselves or those around them when under drug influence. This is why you should seek treatment once you notice that your drug use is getting out of control.
Addiction Risk Factors
People from all walks of life can experience addiction regardless of age or race. However, the vulnerability may vary from one person to another. Your genetic makeup may increase your risk of alcohol and nicotine addiction. The environment a person grows in may also influence drug abuse. Young adults who experience parental neglect may use drugs to cope with their emotions or for experimentation. Also, 53% of children raised by parents who abuse alcohol will likely develop a substance use disorder in the future. People who start using drugs early also have a higher risk of developing an addiction.
Depression, anxiety, and other mental illnesses make you more likely to have an addiction. Sniffing or injecting the drug delivers the substances directly into your bloodstream, which increases the risk of addiction compared to other intake methods like swallowing. Drugs like cocaine, heroin, and methamphetamines create faster tolerance, dependence, and addiction than alcohol. Men have a higher risk of addiction to illicit drugs while women are more likely to abuse sleep and anxiety medication.
Staging an Intervention
Like any other chronic illness, addiction is a manageable and treatable condition. But unfortunately, the majority of drug users don’t seek treatment. Most of them are so into the substances that they deny the existence of a problem. Others experience shame. They feel guilty about letting down their loved ones and fear coming out due to the social stigma attached to drug abuse.
If you suspect your loved one has a drug problem, calmly and compassionately convince them to seek help from a drug rehab in Rhode Island. Show them how the behavior has affected their life and how working on sobriety could improve their well-being. Tell them you care and are ready to walk with them throughout treatment. Control your emotions during the intervention and avoid overly judgmental phrases. Also, set clear consequences if your loved one fails to seek treatment. If the person becomes rebellious, stage an intervention with an addiction specialist to convince them to seek treatment before things get out of hand.
Substance Use Disorder Treatment
There are about 59 substance abuse treatment facilities in Rhode Island. They include 37 private non-profit, 19 private profit, two federal government, and one tribal government addiction treatment center. This is proof that help is within reach no matter the severity of your addiction.
The first step toward recovery is admitting that you have a problem that disrupts your quality of life and then seek assistance. You can call a rehab center to enroll in a program or do it online. The treatment process may vary based on the client’s mental state and needed care level.
On the admission day, a professional will receive you and inspect our items to ensure that you don’t carry prohibited things that could inhibit the treatment’s success. A doctor will then perform a medical analysis to understand your level of addiction and even ask questions like the type of substances used, the period of use, and the nature of your home environment. Answer these questions honestly to guide the doctor in developing a personalized treatment plan that addresses your unique needs. Generally, the treatment programs entail the following processes.
Detoxification entails clearing off drug traces from the body to stabilize the client in preparation for the next treatments. The process starts with an evaluation where a doctor tests for the presence of a substance in the body and the concentration. They then gradually reduce the amounts of substances in the system. Remember that your body was already used to functioning with the drug. So, reducing the amount or completely removing the substances throws your body system off balance, resulting in unpleasant physical, health, and emotional symptoms. Some of the withdrawal symptoms include:
• Abdominal cramps
• Increased heart rate
• Runny nose
• Profuse sweating
• Elevated temperature
• Nausea and vomiting
If you try to quit drugs like benzodiazepines and alcohol without medical supervision, you might experience lethal withdrawal symptoms like delirium, seizures, and hallucinations. You receive 24/7 monitoring and care in a treatment facility to alleviate discomforts and lower the risk of dangerous complications. The doctors may also administer medicine to lower cravings, enable sufficient sleep, and ease anxiety. After detox, your doctor will recommend the appropriate treatment program for your needs.
An inpatient program aims at taking the client out of a trigger-filled environment and offers a safe space to help them work on recovery. You reside in the treatment facility to receive constant support and medical care. This option suits people with chronic addiction or those who previously relapsed.
The outpatient program allows the client to live at home during recovery. You come into the rehab facility for a few hours and then later go home. This is a flexible plan for people who still want to go to work, school, or care for their families while still receiving treatment.
Clients who need intense care but still want to live at home can opt for partial hospitalization. You spend most of your day in the treatment center but don’t stay overnight.
Half the people struggling with addiction have an underlying mental health issue. You will therefore need counseling to address life stressors to prevent relapse. During the treatment period, you will attend an individual therapy session with a counselor to discuss the problems that pushed you to drug use. It benefits people struggling with traumas, strained relationships, grief, or anger. You will better understand yourself and learn how to manage emotions.
Addiction treatment also entails group therapy that allows clients to interact with people dealing with similar issues. It helps promote meaningful relationships and reduce isolation. Other forms of therapy include:
• Contingency management: The counselor gives tangible rewards to the client after achieving certain goals like maintaining sobriety to reinforce positive behaviors.
• Rational emotive behavior therapy: Rational emotive behavior therapy helps clients identify negative thoughts that can lead to addictive behaviors.
• Dialectal behavioral therapy: This therapy form improves a person’s interpersonal skills, distress tolerance, emotional regulations, and mindfulness levels to help treat severe psychological disorders.
• Motivational interviewing: Motivational interviewing can reduce the extent of substance abuse by improving the client’s willingness to change and their commitment to maintaining sobriety.
• Cognitive-behavioral therapy: This therapy trains clients to connect their thoughts, feelings, and actions to help them recognize triggers and develop better coping skills. It’s effective in treating alcohol and drug use disorders.
• Family therapy: Family therapy addresses the addiction’s effects on the client and their loved ones. It helps resolve family conflicts and gives your family a chance to participate in your treatment actively.
Addiction treatment aims to help the client return to productive functioning in the workplace and community. Once a person leaves the rehab facility, they return to their families, work, and hobbies. These events can trigger cravings and drug use temptations that can lead to relapse. Before leaving the rehab center, work with your therapist to create an after-care plan.
Most rehab centers organize alumni programs to offer continued support to those who have completed treatment. Ensure that you attend such activities to discuss your experiences and struggles with your colleagues. You also receive advice to help you cope with your addiction as you transition into your normal life.
Look for self-help groups in your local community. This is your chance to build a sober support network. Attending 12-step meetings like Alcoholics Anonymous and Narcotics Anonymous increases your chances of remaining sober. The program breaks down the recovery process into steps that all members must follow to promote long-term abstinence.
For a person stepping down from a more intensive treatment program, it’s a good idea to move into a sober residence. These controlled, drug-free homes help clients transition into their daily lives without fearing relapse. Most sober homes organize regular monitoring, random drug tests, house meetings, and curfews for residents to promote accountability. You, however, have the freedom to go to a gym, look for a job, and reestablish your responsibilities while living in a sober home.
Start Your Journey to Recovery Now
If you are struggling with addiction, you don’t have to fight this battle alone. Many people are ready to walk with you in the recovery journey until you regain freedom from drug use. All you need to do is seek treatment and commit to maintaining sobriety.