Almost 21 million Americans suffer from some kind of substance addiction, whether it’s to alcohol, prescription drugs, or illegal drugs, and only about 10% of these people are getting addiction treatment.
Substance use can tear families apart, lead to financial difficulties, and devastate friends, family, and loved ones. If someone you love is struggling with addiction, there are a few ways you can help them. Learn more below, and see what steps you can take if a loved one is struggling with substance use and addiction.
Ways You Can Help Someone Struggling With Addiction
Helping someone overcome addiction isn’t easy. But there are a few simple steps you can take to encourage your loved one to get addiction treatment, and to care for yourself as they struggle with their addiction.
- Educate yourself about addiction – Addiction is not a moral failing. It’s a disease, and it can affect anyone. It’s important to educate yourself about addiction, why it happens, who it affects, and who is at risk of addiction. This can also help you recognize addictive behaviors in loved ones, and understand what they’re going through and how you can help them.
- Offer your support – Always be supportive of your loved ones, even when they’re struggling with addiction. Show them how much you care for them and love them, and make it clear that you are willing to forgive the impact on your relationship, and work toward recovery with them. As long as they are willing to put in the work, make sure you show your support.
- Consider counseling – Counseling can be particularly helpful for families and couples. Working with a counselor can help you and your loved one explain your feelings to one another, understand where you’re both coming from, and what steps you can take to rebuild trust during the recovery process, and heal the damage done by substance use.
- Encourage them to seek professional help – Recovering from drug addiction on one’s own is extremely difficult – if not impossible. You should encourage your loved one to get professional help, such as treatment from an addiction counselor or rehabilitation facility, or even start attending a community group like Alcoholics Anonymous (AA) or Narcotics Anonymous (NA).
- Have realistic expectations – Recovery doesn’t happen overnight, and relapses are common. You need to be realistic, and understand that addiction treatment and recovery can take years. Again, working with counselors and mental health professionals can help you set realistic expectations.
- Don’t enable – You should absolutely never enable your loved one’s substance use. Your home should be free of any harmful substances, and if your loved one doesn’t change their behavior or seek addiction treatment, you need to make it clear that you will take appropriate action.
- Take care of yourself – You cannot make your loved one change. They must be willing to overcome their addiction on their own. You can support them, but change always comes from within. So take care of yourself and your own well-being, too. Consider your own mental health, as well as the professional support that may help you and practice self-care.
Need Help? Bayless Integrated Healthcare Is Here For You!
At Bayless Integrated Healthcare, we offer a wide variety of addiction services to help you and your loved ones overcome the negative effects of substance abuse. We offer addiction treatment programs, as well as counseling for emotional and behavioral health.
If your loved one is struggling with substance abuse and is willing to seek treatment in Phoenix, we’re here to help. Learn more and get started by contacting us online or giving us a call at 602-230-7373.