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Life After Drug Rehab

Christina Botto
 


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Drug abuse among teens is a growing concern. In Troubled Teenagers - Identifying and Dealing with Tough Issues we discuss the signs as well as the reasons why teens abuse drugs and alcohol.

As with any disease, early detection increases the chance for a full recovery and a drug and alcohol free future. Inpatient treatment at a Drug and Alcohol Rehabilitation Center is the first step to a drug and alcohol free life. The patient is provided 24-hour care to monitor and ensure a safe withdrawal from drugs.

In addition, they attended lectures, workshops, group therapy and individual counseling to educate them about the psychological and physical implications of long-term substance abuse.

During the period of treatment, patients are able to take a good hard look at the reasons that they have used drugs in the past, such as emotional triggers, certain events or peer pressure.

Patients are also taught to effectively address emotional or psychological issues that might interfere with their recovery through group and individual counseling. The staff also helps them determine and address their own unique relapse warning signs.

After a 30-day stay at the drug rehabilitation facility, your teen will return home much better equipped with the capabilities to avoid drug abuse and live a normal life.

How you can help your teen after rehab -

Although relapse is common, as long as your teen remains committed to his or her recovery and implements lifestyle changes, they can avoid becoming a statistic of chronic relapse.

According to research, it takes 90 days for the brain to develop resistance against the desire to use drugs. Usually inpatient drug and alcohol rehabilitation is followed up with Sober Living, which are alcohol- and drug-free houses that support the recovering person to maintain an alcohol- and drug-free lifestyle.

Applying the principles of Sober Living in your home:

First, you need to make sure that your teen lives in a place that is free from alcohol and drug use. Second, your teen needs to attend group counseling and meetings. Finally, your son or daughter needs structure and strict guidelines, including curfew and random drug testing.

Your teen also needs to stay away from nightlife and friends, learn to take responsibility for their choices and actions and how to function in the day-to-day world.

Often well-meaning efforts to help someone with a drug problem actually empower them to continue their destructive behavior by allowing them to avoid the consequences of their actions.
How you can help your teen:

  • Allow them to accept their own responsibilities
  • Set clear rules and limitations and enforce them
  • Encourage your teen to attend meetings and group counseling
  • Be there to listen to their problems, fears, and plans for getting through this time
  • Be aware of and celebrate every victory

Don't:

  • Accept the guilt for your teen's problem
  • Rescue your son or daughter from the consequences of their actions
  • Blame, argue, or recall past mistakes
  • Solve your teen's problems for them
  • Accept their promises
  • Believe everything they tell you
  • Be anxious or impatient

Additionally, learn how to love your son or daughter while letting go of what you cannot control.

Accept that you cannot control your teen's future choices, but that there is much you can do to avoid standing in the way of his or her recovery.

Your role as a helper is not to do things for your son or daughter such as waking them up so they would not be late for work, or paying bills for them, but to allow them to experience their own consequences.

Let go of the past, and try not to worry about the future. Worrying will use up all your energy and leave you unable to focus on “today".

Signs leading to relapse:

  • Exhaustion
  • Dishonesty
  • Impatience
  • Arguing
  • Frustration
  • Self-pity
  • Cockiness
  • Complacency
  • Being bored

Daily inventory and dealing with their problems as well as therapy are mandatory to remain sober. Your teen needs to accept that he or she has a problem and that they have to do some things that are routine for a clean and sober life.

Christina Botto, author of Help Me With My Teenager! A Step-by-Step Guide for Parents that Works and Fitting The Pieces has been involved with helping parents and their teens resolve complicated issues for more than 16 years. She also owns Parenting A Teenager - a site that offers a variety of tools and resources to help parents understand their teens

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