How do you treat addiction without therapy

Psychiatry, Psychosomatics & Psychotherapy

Treatment and therapy options for an addictive disease

Those who are addicted need treatment that is adapted to the type of addictive substance, the stage and the severity of the disease. For most of those affected, this is absolute abstinence (Abstinence) the therapy goal, only a very small minority come with one controlled use (e.g. "controlled drinking" or methadone administration) rightly. In terms of damage limitation, early entry into therapy and low-threshold access, reduced consumption of the drug can initially be an important sub-goal. The way there is individually different.

It is crucial to motivate the addict to quit in their own interest and to offer measures to prevent relapse, such as participation in self-help groups. It is important to stabilize the personality of the person concerned and to strengthen the usually very reduced self-confidence. The aim is to cope with normal everyday life and return to work. The patient must also learn alternative mechanisms in the event of problems and conflicts so that he does not resort to drugs again in stressful situations and bad times. Concomitant illnesses must of course also be treated; psychotherapy is indicated for psychological problems.

People you trust (doctor, relatives), outpatient facilities (advice centers), specialist clinics and self-help groups form the basis for successful weaning. The treatment of an addict can usually be divided into the following phases:

  • Contact and motivation phase (outpatient)
  • Detox phase / physical withdrawal (clinic)
  • Weaning treatment (clinic)
  • Follow-up and rehabilitation phase (clinic and outpatient)

Involving the relatives is generally recommended with the consent of the person concerned.

In the case of certain addictions, such as opiate addiction, there is also the option of substitution treatment in specialized practices or outpatient departments. The relevant medical and legal guidelines must be followed.

Technical support: Dr. med. Anil Batra, Tübingen (DGPPN)