Health Care Counselors
The idea of long-term, open-ended treatment runs counter to the one-time view that a person was likely “cured” in a relatively short time after attending a drug rehab program. However, evidence is mounting that lifelong treatment with maintenance medication, along with counseling or therapy should be standard drug abuse treatment for most people with relapsing opioid addiction.
What Types of Therapy are Available?
There are many different types of therapies designed to complement the traditional addiction counseling sessions. Depending on the treatment center, these may include:
- Biofeedback and Neurofeedback. These therapies use real-time displays of brain activity to monitor levels of muscle tension, blood pressure and heart rate and train the patient on how to manipulate brain function in order to gain some control over their physiological processes.
- Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT). CBT is effective in helping addiction and mental health disorders, because it focuses on the relationship between thoughts and the subsequent behaviors and choices related to them. Through the use of CBT, a counselor can help patients identify triggers that lead to drug or alcohol use, and then replace those responses with healthy ones.
- Dialectical Behavior Therapy (DBT). DBT is used to treat individuals with a dual diagnosis and one of the main objectives is to help patients gain confidence and coping abilities to handle stressful situations in healthy ways. DBT will also improve communication skills and self-image, which can help people with conditions such as Borderline Personality Disorder and eating disorders.
- Meditation, Hypnotherapy, Guided Imagery and Mindfulness. These types of therapies place a focus on identifying triggers, controlling stress responses and using deep relaxation techniques. The main idea of this type of therapy is to get an individual into a relaxed state of mind to better understand what could be causing drug-seeking and using behaviors.
- Holistic therapies. In addition to traditional treatment methods, holistic therapy helps patients practice introspection and learn coping skills. It also gives patients who are not comfortable opening up in traditional therapy sessions, a way to communicate their deepest fears and issues in a non-threatening manner. A few forms of holistic therapy that can be useful in treating addictions are yoga, art therapy and equine therapy.
Quality addiction treatment centers provide a variety of additional types of therapies in order to treat the whole problem, with the ultimate goal being guiding the patient toward a lasting recovery.