For some people, secondary care is an essential phase between intensive treatment and rehab and a full return to normal life; this is especially likely to be the case if an addict’s home environment is dysfunctional or challenging in other ways, and the addict does not yet feel robust enough in their recovery to deal with those challenges as well as the ongoing challenge of staying drug-free.
In the past, alcohol rehab programs provided a standardized set of treatments for each patient, regardless of age, gender, psychiatric history, or demographic group. Today, alcohol treatment programs and alcohol treatment centers have become more specialized in order to meet the needs of a diverse, highly varied group of patients. Choosing a course of treatment has become more complicated, but the results of a careful search are likely to be more successful — and more satisfying to the individual.
Patient-centered, collaborative therapies like motivational interviewing (MI) have proven to be more effective at retaining patients in alcohol treatment than older, more confrontational styles. In a study published in Drug and Alcohol Dependence, alcoholics who received this encouraging, patient-centered form of therapy during the intake process were more likely to remain in treatment than those who were approached using traditional therapeutic styles.

Research from NIAAA also suggests that alcoholism can stem from genes. While the specific “alcoholism gene” hasn’t yet been identified, there are known genes that can boost the power of alcohol and reduce the impact of a hangover. People with these gene combinations may get a bigger high from drinking, and they may not feel ill or sick after a long day of drinking. Their bodies just seem primed for alcohol abuse, and that can make them more likely to develop alcoholism.


There are many reasons people get addicted to drugs, but you must gain insight into what draws you towards your substance of choice. Is it a means to cope with stress? Do drugs help numb you emotionally so you don’t have to feel emotional or physical pain? Are drugs a way to avoid responsibility, gain other’s approval or belong to a group? It’s important that you peel back the layers of your behavior to understand what is behind your drug habits. How I overcame alcoholism | Claudia Christian | TEDxLondonBusinessSchool
To begin this process and to find these treatment options, a person dealing with drug or alcohol addiction can get in touch with their state or local mental/behavioral health or substance abuse services. These are often part of larger public or community health agency networks within the government. SAMHSA maintains a Directory of Single State Agencies (SSA) for Substance Abuse Services to make it easier for people to find out whom to contact. The state’s government websites can also provide information on these services and how to apply for them.
Theresa Soltesz graduated with her Bachelor’s Degree in Addiction Science and Addiction Counseling from Minnesota State University in 2010. Upon completion of her degree and clinical internship, Theresa began her career as an Addiction Counselor in 2010. Theresa is currently certified as a Certified Addiction Professional (CAP) by The Florida Certification Board, a Certified International Alcohol and Drug Counselor (ICADC) by The International Certification and Reciprocity Consortium (IC&RC) since 2013. Theresa is also a Certified Professional Life Coach and is currently awaiting an additional certification as a Certified Behavioral Health Case Manager (CBHCM) by The Florida Certification Board.Theresa has worked as a Primary Addiction Counselor in various treatment centers for addiction and co-occurring disorders in Florida, Minnesota, and Colorado in various settings, including detox, residential, PHP, IOP and OP. Eager to learn, She has also worked as an Addiction Counselor for various populations, such as adolescent and adult males and females, diverse ethnic populations, homeless individuals, individuals suffering from severe and persistent mental illness (SPMI), and the LGBTQ community. As a proud recovering addict herself, Theresa understands first-hand the struggles of addiction.
Many physicians believe no effective treatment is available for alcoholism; therefore, these physicians do not refer their patients for treatment. However, more than 13 studies representing more than 4000 patients demonstrate that brief interventions make a difference. Most of the patients in these studies drank heavily but did not yet have a problem with alcohol.
Pharmaceutical drugs. When it comes to prescription drug abuse and drug addiction, opiate pain medications are the most widely abused. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) notes that in 2012, over 250 million prescriptions were written for analgesics like Vicodin, Norco, and Percocet. At the same time, the CDC estimates that 46 Americans die every day from overdoses on narcotic pain relievers, and that addiction to prescription drugs now surpasses both heroin and cocaine. However, opiates aren’t the only prescription medications that can cause dependence and addiction. Other commonly abused prescription drugs include sedatives in the benzodiazepine family (Valium, Klonopin, Ativan, Xanax), stimulants used to treat attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (Adderall, Ritalin, Concerta), and prescription sleeping pills (Ambien, Lunesta).
Getting alcohol out of the addicted person’s system is the first part of recovery. People with a severe alcohol addiction can experience intense withdrawal symptoms. A supervised alcohol detox is usually necessary for people addicted to alcohol to prevent potentially fatal complications. Shaking, sweating, seizures, and hallucinations are possible alcohol withdrawal symptoms. Woman Turns to Rehab After Struggling With Drugs, Alcohol: Part 1
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