After a major orthopedic surgery, patients are asked to meet with rehab specialists and learn how to stretch and strengthen their newly improved joints. While the surgery corrected the original problem, the rehab process is vital in helping people recover. Without rehab, these people might injure their amended joints all over again. Rehab programs for Valium addiction work a bit like this. While Valium detox “fixes” the drug presence issue, as no more Valium particles are active within the person’s system when the process is complete, rehab helps the person to strengthen the muscle of the mind, keeping dysfunction and relapse at bay.
While each Valium rehab program is a little different, as they’re tailored to the specific needs of people who use them, there are some overarching similarities this article will describe in detail. If you have more questions about how the process works, or you’d like to find out how to enroll and get started on your own recovery, please call our operators here at The Orchid.
Education Is Key
Addictions are considered chronic diseases that must be adequately handled for the rest of the person’s life. Unlike a cold, which might come and go without any sort of ongoing care from the infected person, an addiction might require a lifetime of vigilance and knowledge, allowing the person to spot trends and take action before disastrous consequences take place. Often, this education takes place in therapy sessions between the addicted person and a trained counselor. Here, the addicted person can pick up important skills to use in the fight against addiction.
Therapists often use cognitive behavioral techniques to help people struggling with addiction. In these sessions, the person is asked to think of specific locations, people or emotional states that bring about cravings for drugs. For people who are addicted to Valium, many of those conversations might revolve around stress. For example, a study in the journal Social Science and Medicine found a clear link between working in a high-stress job and taking benzodiazepines such as Valium. In therapy sessions, these people might learn how to deal with work-related stress in ways that do not involve the use of Valium. Almost any situation that could prompt a craving for drugs could be assessed and improved with cognitive behavioral therapy.
Techniques used to combat a craving could include:
- Breathing exercises
- Mindfulness exercises
- Avoidance or refusal
Some therapists provide education in group sessions, in which multiple people who are addicted to various substances come together, learn new techniques and practice those skills with one another. Some people find these group meetings incredibly helpful, as they’re given the chance to really work with other addicted people and apply their lessons right away. A study in the British Journal of Psychiatry didn’t find that this therapy was overwhelmingly helpful for people with a benzodiazepine addiction; however, this doesn’t mean that no one benefits from therapy. Instead, this research finding might indicate that group therapy alone isn’t enough to help people to truly recover from the addictions they face. Often, people need to add in other forms of therapy in order to make a full recovery.
Dealing With Core Issues
According to a study published in the Journal of the American Medical Association, more women are prescribed Valium, when compared to men, and most of these women were given the drug to help them deal with mental health problems such as anxiety. While the drug was sometimes given to help people with chronic pain, the drug is often considered a front-line treatment for women struggling with mental health issues. There’s no question that Valium could be helpful for these women, as it tends to soothe their active minds and allow them to go through the day with a lower level of stress and nervousness. However, when these women attempt to stop taking Valium, they may find that their original complaints are still in place. They may still feel stressed and nervous. In fact, they may feel worse than they ever did before.
Valium can change the circuitry of the brain, tapping into the brain’s reward system and making the person feel light and carefree for a short period of time. When the drugs wear off, however, the person may feel even lower than before. The brain turns off pleasure receptors, and stops producing its own feel-good chemicals. Over time, the person might only feel happy or even normal while on Valium. This link between depression and Valium use is quite strong. In fact, in a study published in BMJ, about a third of people who had taken benzodiazepines for over one year also merited a diagnosis of depression. These people felt low and sad, even while they were taking drugs like Valium.
Having a mental illness as well as an addiction can be difficult, as the two conditions can reinforce one another. A mental illness can cause a person to crave drugs or use drugs, in order to keep the symptoms of mental illness at bay. Similarly, an addiction can cause signs of a mental illness to appear and grow stronger. Dealing with only one issue, while leaving the other in place, could cause both conditions to reappear. Breaking the link means treating both conditions, at the same time.
For those addicted to Valium, this often means providing therapy for:
- Panic disorder
Once again, these therapy sessions can be provided on a one-on-one basis, or they might be provided in group settings in which multiple people get help all at the same time.
Identifying and Combatting Cravings
According to a study in the British Medical Journal, clients going through withdrawal from Valium often report cravings for the drug, and they might feel as though they simply can’t get through the day without taking the drug. If these clients are in inpatient settings for addiction, they will not have access to Valium and they’ll be watched around the clock to ensure that they don’t sneak in pills to take. However, people who accept outpatient care and who live at home might be asked to deal with the sudden craving to take Valium, and it might be quite easy for them to find the drug and take it.
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Cravings for drugs can be sneaky and difficult to identify. The craving might start as a simple thought or idea that just seems to get stronger and stronger with each passing moment. The craving might also seem like a physical pain that can’t be addressed in any other way. In order to help clients to avoid relapsing when presented with cravings, therapists sometimes provide specific harm-reduction therapy. Here, clients are shown photographs of the drugs they crave, or images of people taking drugs. Then, they’re asked to identify the way their bodies have responded. Often, this therapy allows people to identify how their own cravings manifest. Some people report feeling sad or excited, while others feel their hands shake and their eyes widen. Education is key here, as clients who can identify their cravings can also learn to control them. It’s an important part of getting well.
With appropriate therapy and lifelong vigilance, people can learn to control their addictions to Valium. For example, in a study in the journal Addiction researchers found that 48 percent of people who had been taking benzodiazepines for 1 to 22 years were judged fully recovered when treatment was complete. Only 6 percent were not improved with therapy. As this study makes clear, even people who have been taking the drug for an incredibly long period of time can improve if they’re provided with the proper therapy. The process can take time to complete, however, with experts in the British Medical Journal stating that some people have symptoms of withdrawal from Valium for up to a year or more. As a result, people who have addictions to Valium should look for programs that provide a significant amount of aftercare support. Programs that offer 60 days of treatment and then ask people to handle the rest of the disease alone without help might not be as beneficial as programs that provide clients with intensive treatment, outpatient care and long-term follow-up care. Since the recovery process is so extended, this longer period of help might be required in order to help people achieve a long-term recovery.
At The Orchid, we know that treatment works, because we’ve helped many women to overcome their addictions to Valium. We use a communal approach, allowing women to form tight-knit healing groups where they can support and learn from one another. We use cognitive behavioral techniques as well as art therapy, 12-step recovery meetings and group work to help our clients learn and grow. We also use therapy techniques to help our clients deal with any underlying mental health issues they might have that could be contributing to their addiction issue. Our approach is unique, tailored just for women, and we’d like to tell you more about it. Please contact our operators to find out more about our South Florida program.