How Technology is Changing the Way People Seek Help for Addiction
Addiction is a chronic brain disease that relapses and is mostly defined by the compulsive use and seeking of drugs. The compulsion to use is quite strong as it makes the user oblivious to the consequences brought about by drug addiction.
What are the main reasons that addicts have for drug abuse?
To achieve a good feeling
Various drugs have various feelings that they impose on the user. Some claim that relaxation, confidence and an increase in energy are the main reasons that they take drugs.
To feel better
Stress, anxiety, and depression are some of the experiences that drive people towards drug use, relapse and addiction as they seek to avoid them.
To perform better
Better performance is a common reason among athlete addicts. The use of drugs for better performance can also be used to enhance cognitive performance. Some of the common drugs that arise in these cases include steroids.
Curiosity and peer pressure
You will discover that teenagers and adolescents rather than adults, tend to do things to please their peers and as a means of proving their independence to the adults in their lives. Drugs are some of the things they partake in oblivious that they are delusional.
What are the consequences of drug abuse and addiction?
The effects of drug abuse vary in their impact and those that they affect. What’s more, they are vast which tips the scale of choosing between drugs and sobriety towards the latter. These consequences can be classified into four major groups which are:
The toll that the drugs will take on your body are the health consequences. Addiction itself is a health consequence as it is a brain. Specific drugs have various implications, for example, alcoholics have a higher propensity to get liver cirrhosis, or those who use injective drugs face the risk of contracting the HIV.
You may wonder if prescription pills can bring any health consequences. They do especially when they are used outside the doctor’s prescription. Self-prescription especially is highly discouraged.
Your relationships with your friends and family will be affected. Communication will inevitably worsen as they may not be in support of your abuse, so you end up avoiding them. Moreover, you may have come across or heard of cases of domestic violence and abusive language towards friends and family, especially by alcoholics. Social ties are damaged by such character and trust is lost.
When you are an addict, your mind will be making calculations on how to obtain drugs. Since addiction has a compulsive nature, your finances will be directed toward obtaining drugs rather than self-development.
What’s more, with drug abuse, you will hardly have the focus to work, and one may end up losing their jobs, and this causes a financial constraint to the family of the addict.
Lastly, you may end up in the crosshairs of the law and its enforcement agents. This is because most drugs are illegal and in the case, they are not, you may get arrested for misconduct.
Is there a solution for addiction?
YES. There is. There exist intervention programs that have been established from research on addiction. With these programs, you can desist from drugs.
On top of the rehabilitation programs and facilities and other various programs in various communities, technology has proved to be an essential tool in treating addiction. People are enlisting the use of technology for assessing, preventing, treating and recovering from drug and substance addiction. The internet and mobile phones especially are the technological tools that have been adopted for this mission.
The general contributions of technology to addiction recovery include:
Assessments done with technology will increase the risk behavior self-report accuracy and will facilitate the standardization of procedures of evaluations.
Technology assessments provide broader criteria for assessing the use of substances and behaviors risks associated with drug abuse in an instance where the specialty treatment expertise and resources are limited.
There is real-time access to information on triggers and substance use of individuals which is enabled by the internet and mobile devices. Traditional methods of data collection fail to offer real-time data.
Technology provides therapeutic tools which make the interventions on substance use to be backed with evidence from the internet.
Some people can access the therapeutic tools at the same time as technology transcends geographical borders.
Anonymity is an added advantage for adopting the therapeutic tools provided by technology.
Technological addiction interventions may be costly for set up, but they are a cheap and readily accessible option.
Technology can be used to monitor your progress of recovery, e.g., via questionnaires and scanning gadgets.
How has technology changed the way in which people seek addiction help?
Therapeutic Education system
The Community Reinforcement Approach has its principles governing this technological system. It involves principles of self-management which is done by the therapeutic system on a technical platform namely the internet.
You are presented with 65 modules to help conquer your addiction. The modules put the focus on cognitive behavior skills, examples including refusal skills.
Moreover, there is focus on boosting the psychosocial functioning of the addict which involves social relations and also focuses on curbing the behavior that may put you at risk of contracting diseases associated with substance abuse such as HIV and sexually transmitted infections.
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How does The Therapeutic Education system help conquer an addiction?
With this system, you get to direct your recovery.
You get to build treatment plans that are individualized.
You will be assessed on how well you have grasped the material offered by this educational system.
This system regulates the learning pace and material repetition to help you master the intended skills adequately.
The system provides interactive videos to help you learn behaviors like relaxation to help fight the urge to abuse substances.
What do studies prove about the therapeutic education system?
The outcomes of this system are superior to the findings from the standard addiction treatments.
The abstinence rates of this system are comparable to the rates from similar therapy conducted by highly trained professionals.
An increase in Knowledge on the diseases associated with substance abuse for example HIV.
It has gathered popularity among those struggling with addiction.
Cognitive behavior therapy
Cognitive Behavior Therapy has proved to be one of the most effective forms of medications for alcoholics, adolescents and other substance users.
How does The Cognitive behavior therapy help conquer an addiction?
The main focus of this approach is to amend the association between cognitive and environmental problem behavior antecedents. You can focus on developing skills such as:
These skills help to ward off addiction from the particular substance and problems that co-occur with substance abuse. You can study your drug abuse patterns.
What do studies prove about the Cognitive behavior therapy?
The therapy is long lasting, and even after a year of not using this therapy, there is development noted in the patient. Apart from picking up the skills in this program, it is cost effective as the program can be conducted remotely via interactive videos and lessons.
Motivational Enhancement Therapy
The motivational enhancement therapy adopts the principles of Motivational interviewing to achieve its objective of curing addiction. A motivational interview is conducted at the start of treatment. These interviews are usually just one session. Motivational interviewing prove to establish a strong base for engagement in the rest of the program which entails Motivational Enhancement Therapy.
How does Motivational Enhancement Therapy help conquer an addiction?
It provides the patient with feedback on the state of their substance abuse and their progress.
Motivational therapy assesses your eagerness to change.
You will be able to review the advantages and disadvantages of this change.
You are encouraged to participate in goal setting and platforms to set goals are provides.
What do studies prove about Motivational Enhancement Therapy and Motivational Interviewing?
The effects of Motivational interviewing are more effective than most treatment options but they, however, these effects tend to wear out over time.
Patients adhere well to this treatment, and an increase in the motivation for drug abstinence is registered.
Military populations have also adopted these therapies, and they have proved to be effective.
Motivational interviewing helps to improve the level of engagement in the following treatment methods.
The program focuses on availing incentives that will target a particular behavior that you may be contingent too. You will have positive reinforcements from these incentives.
Internet-based Contingency Management
With the technological advancements, the Contingency management and incentives have been made available via the internet, and this has helped in reaching a broader population across various geographical locations.
How does Internet-based Contingency Management help conquer an addiction?
Webcams are used to keep track of your behavior when you are in the process of substance abuse. You will be able to see how you look and the effects first hand.
In some contingency management programs, you are required to deposit a certain amount which will act as your incentive. This deposit will be returned when abstinence from substance abuse is evident.
A group contingency model also exists. You will be involved in a group so that you can work together to achieve a particular incentive and goals of substance abuse cessation.
What do studies prove about Motivational Enhancement Therapy and Motivational Interviewing?
The Spurs also extend to the workplace where one can access work premises after testing negative on a drug test. What’s more, at the workplace, you learn on the skills of abstinence and drug education as a whole. At the end of all this, incentives are presented in the form of gift vouchers for good or services in most cases.
The effects of this method are long lasting
Patients embarked on this method can gain various skills and abstinence.
It is a cost-effective program.
Computerized Neurocognitive Rehabilitation.
The neurocognitive rehabilitation has some similarity with the cognitive behavior therapy. This framework defines addiction as a change in the decision-making processes of the brain. Low cognitive control and making impulsive choices are associated with drug addiction and are a result of the automatic brain system.
The executive brain system performs inverse functions performed by the electronic brain system. Neurocognitive Rehabilitation assumes that rehabilitation of the cognitive functions of the executive system is directly proportional to an increase in self-control.
How does Computerized Neurocognitive Rehabilitation help conquer an addiction?
You are provided with exercises that help in acquiring of cognitive skills by focusing specifically on:
You will focus on reestablishing and establishing new cognitive behavior patterns.
What do studies prove about Computerized Neurocognitive Rehabilitation?
Patients enrolled in this program tend to last in longer in this treatment program.
The patients improve their cognitive skills.
Cognitive behavior therapies are more efficient.
Functional Magnetic Resonance Imaging
It is almost common knowledge that drugs affect the neural functioning of the user. They tend to interfere with the operation of the neurons to be able to send information, receive it and process it.
Imaging via Functional magnetic resonance is used for measuring the neural activity hemodynamic response. The brain and spinal cord are the primary targets of this specific magnetic resonance scan. You will be able to define the magnitude of the drugs’ effects on your neural activity and to monitor your recovery process.
Technologies and various models have been adopted to help curb addiction. Ubiquitous techniques, for example, mobile phones and personal computers have mostly been used to assist in the implementation of various recovery programs.
This helps promote anonymity which is a factor that most addicts consider in these programs. They can govern themselves with these technologies which in turn provide impact towards positive change. New techniques and ideas to help cope with addiction keep rising as technology registers its various advancements. You can adopt any of the above methods as medications for alcoholics among other drug addicts.