Nashville Drug and Alcohol Interventions
According to the Tennessee Department of Mental Health & Substance Abuse Services, 364,234 people received publicly funded behavioral health services, including substance abuse treatment, in the state in 2016. Though substance abuse is a serious issue in the United States and specifically in the city of Nashville, there are a number of resources for individuals who need help to be able to recover quickly and efficiently from their addictions. Sadly, less than 2% of those who are addicted to drugs or alcohol get the professional treatment that they need.
Often times, family member or loved ones will ask an addict to seek help but he or she will refuse. This is common play when addiction is concerned, but you can’t let the addict defeat you that easily. Calling the help of a professional Nashville drug and alcohol interventionist can assist you in the process of getting your loved one into treatment.
Planning an Intervention: What to Include & What to Omit
Many authorities recommend holding a formal intervention whenever a loved one suffers from addictive behaviors that require inpatient treatment. Although this procedure may vary somewhat from one person’s situation to another, there do seem to be some procedures that usually apply. It remains very important not to attempt an intervention without first enlisting the assistance of a trained, qualified professional with experience in the field. A botched intervention can sometimes do more harm than good.
The Scope of the Problem
By almost any estimation, the scope of addictive behavior issues in the United States has reached crisis proportions. Addictions may range from illicit drug and alcohol abuse to compulsive shopping, to compulsive gambling.
Substance abuse remains one of the chief reasons patients may seek inpatient treatment. The statistics in this area raise concern. For example, in 2009, a self-reporting survey conducted by a governmental health agency indicated that 23.5 million people over the age of 12 in the United States required treatment for an illicit drug or alcohol abuse. This figure is slightly over 9% of the population in that broad age range.
The previous year, 1.8 million people seeking admission to treatment facilities. Of these, the vast majority fell into the age groups aged 49 or younger. Alarmingly, of the people requiring inpatient assistance, 11.6% were between the ages of 12 and 19.
What to Include in an Intervention
Experts generally recommend several steps to follow methodically in arranging for an intervention. It remains vital to contact in advance a licensed practitioner with experience in arranging interventions to offer individual guidance. Why? Sometimes people suffering from addictive behaviors do not respond well to an intervention process. Especially if the addicted person suffers from suicidal thoughts, mental illness, a violent temperament or other stressful factors, interventions may involve some safety risks.
The general steps to follow may vary somewhat in an intervention. The goal is usually to ask the addicted person to seek inpatient treatment. There should also be consequences to follow in the event of a refusal, such as refusing to pay further gambling debts for a compulsive gambler or asking a substance abuse impaired spouse to move out of the home. However, most interventions typically include several steps:
- Consult with a trained professional adviser to develop a specific intervention plan.
- Collect information about the scope of the problem.
- Select and brief five to six intervention team members.
- Determine a recommended course of action and consequences for refusal.
- Write down statements to present during the intervention.
- Conduct intervention meeting, preferably in a setting designated by the adviser.
- Track the outcome periodically.
What Not to Include in an Intervention
Many experts believe that addicted individuals often do not fully appreciate the consequences of their addiction, or the harm their actions potentially cause to other people. One goal of intervention usually involves raising the addicted person’s awareness about these points.
However, due to the potential for the intervention to present shocking, distressing insights, everyone involved in the intervention team must take great care to treat the addicted person as gently as possible. This does not mean losing resolve, or making excuses for unacceptable behavior; but efforts should focus on distinguishing the problem from the person suffering from that affliction.
Interventions can inspire deep emotional responses in the addicted person. Often, he or she will blame the intervention team and will refuse to comply with their request to enter into a treatment program. For this reason, some experts believe it is wise to avoid some things:
- Do not enter into an intervention holding an unrealistic belief that the addicted person will consent to treatment. That outcome might occur, but it also might not happen.
- Avoid excessively emotional displays, which might inspire feelings of betrayal by loved ones in the addicted individual. (If a team member feels too emotional, ask the professional adviser if a letter may substitute for an appearance at the intervention.)
- Avoid holding an intervention utilizing team members the addicted person dislikes or disrespects.
- Do not conduct a partial or weak intervention. This means, if the addicted person refuses to recognize a problem and go into treatment, do not delay or eliminate the previously determined consequence for a refusal.
Participating in an intervention can impose a great emotional burden upon team members. This procedure sometimes brings sorrow if an addicted person refuses to accept the treatment option. This is another reason why involving a trained professional physician or licensed counselor with prior experience in conducting interventions remains very important.
The goal of the proceeding must be to effect a beneficial outcome for everyone involved. It is important to treat all the participants with compassion, including the intervention team members and the addicted person.
Why Choose a Nashville Interventionist?
Individuals who become addicted to drugs and alcohol usually can’t overcome this syndrome on their own. In most cases, they will be unable to stop themselves from using, even if they want to, because their consistent substance use has altered their brain chemistry. The only way for someone like this to recover safely is in treatment. But what do you do when a loved one refuses treatment for his or her drug or alcohol addiction?
You seek an interventionist to guide the way.
Professional intervention services include:
- Planning of the intervention to include who will be there to help and what questions will be asked of the addict during the process.
- Planning of the treatment program after the intervention should the addict choose to accept help right away.
- Planning of the location and time of the intervention with the help of friends and family members who are close to the addict.
- Staging a “mock” intervention so that everyone BUT the addict can practice how the process will work.
- Guiding the actual intervention to ensure the conversation remains on track and the end goal of treatment acceptance remains the focus.
Why is it Important to Get Treatment?
According to the National Institute on Drug Abuse, professional rehab programs help patients decrease their criminal activity and improve their functioning socially, psychologically, and occupationally, as well as stop abusing drugs. Without the kind of medical help a rehab center provides, including medication and behavioral therapies, recovering addicts often struggle to make real changes. Addiction treatment really does work, which is why many cities, like Nashville, are attempting to increase their capacity for providing addicts with the necessary behavioral treatments.
Interventions help with this process by encouraging addicts to seek help and to get sober. Often times, this process simply cannot be completed without the help of a professional because the addict is to confrontational, delusional, blindsided or otherwise apprehensive towards the mere idea of recovery in a rehabilitation program or facility. During the intervention, you and your Nashville interventionist will encourage the individual into treatment by:
- Explaining to the addict how his or her addiction affects you.
- Describing the treatment that is being offered and what it will mean for the addict.
- Defining consequences that you WILL stick with if the individual decides NOT to choose treatment.
- Providing emotional support – many struggling addicts just need a small nudge in the right direction to seek help, others are a bit stubborn and require a more defined approach.
Pointing out how the addiction is impacting those that the addict loves and cares about is sometimes all it takes to get him or her to accept help. Either way, a professional interventionist in Nashville can help you navigate this process and get your loved one the help he or she needs.
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