Why You Shouldn’t Do Self-Directed Rehabilitation
09/06/19: Addiction RecoveryRecovery is inherently self-directed. In fact, it needs to be in order to achieve long-term success. So why is the title of this article “Why You SHOULDN’T Do Self-Directed Rehabilitation”? Well, it’s complicated. We’re referring to the attempt to detox and recover completely solo. Just you, at home, with no intervention from professionals. This can be extremely dangerous and isn’t conducive to a successful recovery. The fact of the matter is, while the majority of the motivation comes from within you, it’s extremely difficult to achieve this motivation without guidance from those who know what you need and how to care for you as you embark on this precarious journey. You don’t need to go in alone, and why would you want to? Allow us to explain a little more, and perhaps convince you to choose a recovery program.
“Just stop using”You’ve surely heard it before. Well-meaning yet ignorant friends and family members will casually ask, “Well, why can’t you just stop?” As if it were that easy. But when you make the decision to do self-directed rehabilitation, you’re essentially attempting to “just stop.” There’s a reason why so many people who suffer from addiction see red when someone in their life asks them the “forbidden question.” It’s because addiction is more than just a craving — it’s an uncontrollable, consistent impulse that controls every single aspect of your life. And while the road to recovery starts with your decision to make a change, most of the time people can cite a clear motivation for getting clean. It could be for their family, their career, heck, even their pets! The point is, you want to lean on these outside factors because these are the things that will keep you going when your internal drive hits a roadblock. And when you have the support of a team of professionals? You’re giving yourself the chance that you deserve.
Detoxing: It’s dangerous to do it aloneWhen you stop putting your drug of choice into your body, you’ll likely feel immediate effects. After all, this is why you remain addicted in the first place. Your body will quickly start experiencing the uncomfortable withdrawal symptoms as it detoxes from the drugs. You will physically crave the drugs that you have been using in active addiction, and even worse, you will begin experiencing painful and stressful side effects. This is because your brain got used to being given an overdose of the chemicals it produces naturally, so in a way it has almost forgotten how to produce the amount that your body needs. When you stop providing those chemicals via the addictive substance, your brain takes a while to catch up. Meanwhile, this throws the body into chaos as the necessary functions slow greatly while your body tries to detox. You may even experience frightening occurrences such as seizures because your body is put under so much stress. You’ll probably experience aching, muscle cramps, and there is a good chance that you will feel extremely nauseous, among other things as you detox. But when you go to a professional treatment facility to detox, you are given medications to help minimize the withdrawal symptoms. Your health is often also monitored so that if any life-threatening issues arise, they can be dealt with in the appropriate ways to ensure you are as safe as you can be during the entire detox process. You will also have counselors on-call to assist you through the emotional turmoil you will likely experience. These healthcare professionals will be instrumental in guiding the first part of your recovery process. This is especially important because of the danger detoxing poses to your physical and mental wellbeing.
Mental health issues must be addressedMental health issues are the most common cause (and result) of addiction. These issues usually run deep and can be near impossible to work through entirely on your own. And while the support of friends and family is a nice benefit, they do not have the expertise necessary to stimulate the self-reflection and processing that will be crucial for you to undergo throughout recovery. Counselors at treatment centers will also equip you with tools and techniques to further your growth and help you to remain sober after you get clean. These professionals have a wealth of knowledge and experience that you simply cannot find anywhere else, especially not on your own.
Treatment centers allow you to recover free from distractionsWhen you enter into a rehabilitation program at a treatment center, you are making a commitment to an entire lifestyle change. But when you attempt to tackle self-directed rehabilitation, you are still going to be surrounded by the same vices and distractions that you were when you were battling addiction. This kind of environment is not ideal for recovery, as it is much easier to slip back into old habits. When you arrive at a treatment center, you can feel confident in completely dedicating your body and mind to recovery. The day-to-day responsibilities that were keeping you from breaking free from your addiction are no longer weighing on you. Family members and friends who may have fed into your habits, whether intentionally or unintentionally, cannot get to you in this space. You are shielded from harsh words and criticisms, and will only hear positive affirmations and receive unconditional support from those around you.
You are part of a community with the same goalIn a treatment center, everyone is there for the same reason: to get clean, for good. You’ll be surrounded by like-minded individuals who will understand exactly what you’re going through. Friends and family are great, but oftentimes they cannot fully comprehend the magnitude of what you are dealing with if they have not struggled with addiction themselves. Many treatment centers offer group counseling sessions, where you can get a glimpse into what other people around you are going through. The sense of camaraderie will be pivotal in your recovery journey.
In conclusion…While the decision and motivation to recover comes from within, that doesn’t mean that having a strong, reliable support system of professionals around you isn’t necessary. If you are truly committed to the idea of getting clean, then entering a recovery program is what will give you the best fighting chance. You owe it to yourself to give yourself all of the tools you need to achieve life-long sobriety. We’re here for you.
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