You may have a hard time breaking the cycle of addiction. A loved one’s struggle with addiction can greatly affect you as well, so it is important to be supportive. While a family member is seeking ways to help their loved one overcome an addiction, no one wants them to suffer.
The truth is that the majority of breaking an addiction is extremely difficult to overcome successfully. And the people best equipped to help an addict cope are the addict’s loved ones. It is usually the loved ones that are best equipped to help friends and family members break the addiction cycle because they are loving and trustworthy. Here is a list of key points to keep in mind when helping someone with addictions:
Help Make Wise Choices
During this time, in the addiction process, things will be difficult. Often, it is not so easy to make a wise choice, especially for an individual dealing with an addiction. An extra couple of pairs of eyes on the outside may be just what your loved one needs.
This is when you can suggest creative alternatives to overcome their addiction triggers, which result in addictive behaviors. Please make sure not to belittle or judge the addict; remember, they are in recovery and probably fighting extremely hard to break the cycle. Instead, listen to what your loved one says about what they are thinking, hearing and speaking about what they have to say.
Offer Love and Support
When overcoming a life of addiction, a person has a need to have love and support, even in vulnerable times, while beating the cycle of addiction. Time spent with your family member as the detox and break the cycle of addiction goes a long way. And, you need to ensure you’re there for them no matter what. Having a support system beforehand can be the difference between getting over the addiction and suffering from a relapse that often comes back much worse.
Help Them Through Cravings
As part of breaking the cycle of addictions, you can expect Your loved one to have cravings of all sorts. Cravings are especially varied AND strong when they first withdraw from their addictive behavior. You have to keep them from the addictive behavior at all costs and help them stay away from addictive materials such as cannabis. Make suggestions for alternative activities or compounds that they can engage in instead of the addiction.
Get Medical Help
When someone has made the decision to get off of drugs, having a trained medical professional nearby is a wise decision. Getting off of drugs can be extremely dangerous. Some drugs have severe withdrawal symptoms, so if a medical professional is required to intervene, it is wise to have the necessary phone numbers handy to get help as quickly as possible. Certain doctors specialize in addictions medicine.
Addiction medical specialists provide prevention, evaluation, diagnosis, and treatment services for patients with substance use or substance-related health conditions.
Form an Intervention
Guided interventions with an addict are great ways of showing your loved ones that many people care about them and their health. Interventions work because the sufferer realizes that their actions affect and are noticed by many people around that are affected by their illness. Interventions make it difficult for someone addicted to easily stop the denial about the whole situation.
Attend a 12 Step Meeting
Meetings for addiction recovery are an integral part of any program. In recovery, attendees are encouraged to attend these meetings as often as they feel will help them stay on track. It is crucial that recovering addicts attend meetings every day during the first few months of sobriety.
There are likely local meetings about the particular addiction that your loved one is suffering. Twelve-step meetings are not just for the sufferer but also for anyone affected by the addiction. You can attend these meetings as well to offer support and gain a better understanding of this affliction.
The duration of physical withdrawal is typically three to five days and is overseen by a medical professional; however, emotional withdrawal from using can be a much longer part of breaking the cycle of addiction. Some withdrawal symptoms can be present for many months. Withdrawal symptoms can range widely and include some of the following related symptoms:
- Suicidal thoughts
This will allow you to gain a better understanding of how withdrawal affects an individual. People suffering from drug addiction may suffer physical and psychological symptoms that are troubling. Among the symptoms, you can expect headaches and vomiting.
Combat Stress and Boredom
The sufferer may experience relapses when bored or stressed after withdrawal symptoms have settled down. While you may not be physically present, you can equip your family members with ideas to combat boredom or extreme stress. To help them get help when their addictions call, provide them with specific resources.
Remember that an important part of breaking the cycle of addiction is that it is also important to make time for yourself. It is often difficult to realize the pure magnitude that a family member with addiction has on the loved ones suffering. Watching from the sidelines is difficult. Your love and support will make it far more likely for them to break the cycle of addiction and get back to normal.