Drug addiction is an ongoing concern in the world today. With millions of people struggling with addiction, the need for sustainable rehabilitation centers is ever so imminent.
Drug addiction is a chronic illness which requires lifelong care and management. Accepting addiction as a problem is the first step towards recovery. This is followed by seeking treatment through enrolling into a rehabilitation center. Most treatment centers offer a minimum of thirty to ninety days of treatment, depending on the level of addiction. Severe addicts may require more time in the center for treatment.
The time spent at the treatment center will eventually end, and the patient will be required to look for aftercare programs which will help them transition into the outside life. Addiction treatment is an ongoing process, and therefore it is important to take adequate measures to ensure that a drug free life is achieved. The presence of aftercare programs have sought to facilitate higher success rates of drug free lives, and immensely reduce the rates of relapses.
What To Look Out For In A Drug Aftercare Program
A proper drug aftercare program should be able to at the very least return the patient to a position in which they were able to operate optimally prior to their interaction with the drug. In the past most drug aftercare programs failed because they were entirely reliant on holistic studies that did not involve practical application of treatment schedules and programs on their patients. A proper drug aftercare program should therefore consist of:
*Qualified personnel to manage the breadth and spectrum of the different symptoms associated with drug abuse. In some cases, former patients many come in handy to provide skilled and experienced human labor in running a proper aftercare program either as mentors or as workers within the institution.
*Qualified doctors to identify the link between the physiological and psychological manifestation of a disease or conditions. Certain drug related conditions may appear as critical physical deterioration when they could just be the result of drug reliance or abuse.
*A qualified psychiatrist to properly align the patient to their psychological needs and to be able to identify the lack of any significant psychological need that results in a drug dependency. In many cases, a drug after care program’s psychiatrist or psychologist will act as a principle factor in administering treatment because they recognize that drug dependency is a wholly psychological factor that requires utmost psychological care as opposed to clinical care.
On top of these necessary and crucial components of healthcare a proper drug rehab aftercare program should consist of a, ethos and moral program that dictates the behaviors of its key staff and administrators. It is a proven fact that human beings are prone to errors and systems should be in place to address such errors if and when they should arise.
Benefits of drug rehab aftercare programs
A drug rehab aftercare program, as per the name, suggests any care that occurs after the rehab program of an individual. There are many consequences of drug abuse that clinical care cannot address. For example, a patient may lose their source of income, family, or support system and therefor the rehab aftercare program is mandated to ensure that such luxuries and rights of the patients are returned in order to afford them a more meaningful chance at a second chance, therefore, a drug rehab after care program should have the critical components that can ensure a steady integration into normal society for the individual. There are couples drug rehab centers who support partners to take the program together and support each other at the same time. It helps them build upon their relationship, making it stronger.
The question therefore becomes, what constitutes ‘normal integration?’
Normal integration refers to aligning a social expectation for the patient where they get to meet a social environment that resembles the one they had prior to drug dependency. On the other hand, it also denotes a program whereby the society is allowed to view the ‘errant’ member as a productive cog in its general operations. Therefore, this is a two-way operation where the individual is taught to recognize the need of the general society, but also where the society has to recognize he needs of the individual. Both these steps are crucial for proper integration into mainstream society.
What to consider
Prior to creating an aftercare program after drug rehab there are certain aspects to consider. These aspects depend on the nature of the case under consideration. These factors are:
*Was there a crime committed in the course of the addict’s dependency period? In the event the dependent committed a crime, then a multi-agency approach would be crucial because it would be the only way to make sure the individual receives the type of care they require whilst also committing to serving the consequences of their actions. This step is a very crucial aspect in delivery of justice to individuals and the general community.
*Whether the after-care program might result in adverse socio-economic conditions for the individual and therefore should be initiated prior to any other programs.
*Whether there is clear evidence to suggest that provision of aftercare program will result in the offender/patient refraining from undertaking any further destructive behaviors that would, in essence, make their rehabilitation difficult and harder to maintain.
In essence, however one looks at it, there will always be a need for an aftercare program for a drug rehab patient. The systems are rarely that reliable to ascertain full treatment of the patient and there still exists a lot of evidence to suggest, that doctors don’t have all the answers to fully address the different feedbacks received from such programs. However, on thing remains clear, drug rehab aftercare programs are essential in both criminal justice systems and social justice systems because criminal behavior is a result of social stress on the general population. The best possible method to deal with recidivism in criminal behavior is by undertaking concrete measures to address the root cause of such behavior. Therefore, to fully address recidivism after a drug rehab program, an aftercare program should be in place to ensure that such trigger factors are not in place to cause drug abuse and dependency.