Designing an Effective Rehabilitation Programme for Addicts

Before attempting to design an effective programme of rehabilitation for addicts, one must first understand that addiction is a complex disease that requires a combination of treatments, and is not merely a bad habit that could be abandoned with just a little willpower or ???backbone???, as critics often prefer to call it. Over the years, ideas regarding the best ways to treat addiction have evolved considerably and, although the precise regimens practiced may differ between one clinic and another, there is now a general consensus that any effective programme must be based upon a more integrative approach that addresses not just the dependency alone, but also its causes and its consequences.

Whether the result of alcohol abuse, the use of recreational drugs or an acquired dependence on prescription medicines, when compiling any rehabilitation programme for addicts, it is first essential to help the patient to achieve detoxification through a controlled withdrawal process. Anyone who may have watched a movie such as ???Trainspotting??? or ???Less than Zero??? will have a pretty good idea of just why professional help is essential. Such help will normally consist of a combination of medication to supress the cravings and to ease the withdrawal symptoms, together with some form of behavioural counselling. Detoxification alone, however, is simply not enough to end an addiction. The unfortunate reality is that without further therapy, relapse is almost inevitable.

At this point, a holistic approach to treatment, in which the medical, emotional and spiritual requirements of the patient are also addressed, is now regarded as crucial to the success of any attempt to promote the rehabilitation of addicts. That said, although there may be similarities in their backgrounds and case histories, each patient is a unique individual with a unique set of needs. As such, he or she will require a personalised programme of treatment, and this should be based upon the findings of his or her personal, psychological and medical evaluation. Once implemented, the programme will need to be closely monitored and, if necessary, adjusted in accordance with the results observed.

Patients will frequently require specific treatments for anxiety or depression that can often accompany addiction, either as a cause or effect. They will also need to be examined for the common medical complications, such as TB and Hepatitis B or C, and be treated if necessary. However, the most powerful aids to long-term recovery are the individual and group counselling sessions that form part of the rehabilitation process for addicts. These are designed to restore self-respect and confidence, and to promote social interaction that, together, are so essential for patients to reintegrate successfully with their communities once discharged.

A relaxed and pleasant environment has long been known to accelerate recovery. In addition to offering a residential programme of integrative treatments under the supervision of an experienced team of specialists, at the Beethoven Recovery Centre, we have made every effort to create a haven of safety, tranquillity and beauty. Our centre is set among attractive gardens and in the shadow of the picturesque Magaliesberg Mountains. Comfortable, well-appointed living quarters and nutritious meals from our experienced chef???s kitchen, topped off with exceptional recreational facilities that include a gym, pool and volley ball court, all serve to enhance the success of our rehabilitation programmes for addicts.