What is Addiction?
Addiction can start with experimental use of a recreational drug/alcohol in social situations, and for some people, the consumption use becomes more frequent. For others, particularly with opioids, drug addiction begins with exposure to prescribed medications, or receiving medications from a friend or relative who has been prescribed the medication.
The risk of addiction and how fast you become addicted varies by the type drug. Some drugs, such as opioid painkillers, have a higher risk and cause addiction more quickly than others.
As time passes, you may need larger doses of the drug to get high. Soon you may need the drug just to feel good. As your drug use increases, you may find that it's increasingly difficult to go without the drug. Attempts to stop drug use may cause intense cravings and make you feel physically ill (withdrawal symptoms). You may need help from your doctor, family, friends, support groups or an organized treatment program from our centre to overcome your drug addiction and stay drug-free.
Furthermore, use of drugs and drinking is usually everyday anxieties like: "I want to fit in" or "I'm stressed out" can lead to Drink/ Use. ‘I need to sleep’ – Drink/Use.’ I’m feeling lonely' - Drink/Use.’ I have been dumped or feel cheated on' - Drink/ Use. 'No one understands me’ – Drink/ Use. ‘I feel targeted’ or ‘I want to run away’ becomes Drink/ Use. And the list goes on. So with addiction the immediate response to any uncomfortable thought or feeling become Drink/ Use. This pattern of thought becomes so established that the decision to quit is no longer powerful enough. This is when personal control and choice of life is dictated by the ‘Use’ of drink/ drugs. This is when people break down and succumb to self-infliction of fear, hatred and harm. This is when you need HELP.
Drug addiction symptoms or behaviors include, among others:
- Feeling that you have to use the drug regularly - daily or even several times a day
- Having intense urges for the drug that blocks out any other thoughts
- Over time, needing more of the drug to get the same effect – higher and more diverse
- Taking larger amounts of the drug over a longer period of time than you intended
- Making certain that you maintain a supply of the drug
- Spending money on the drug, even though you can't afford it
- Not meeting obligations and work responsibilities, or cutting back on social or recreational activities because of drug use
- Continuing to use the drug, even though you know it's causing problems in your life or causing you physical or psychological harm
- Doing things to get the drug that you normally wouldn't do, such as stealing, lying, cheating...
- Risk of danger especially when driving or other high risk activities under the influence of the drug
- Spending a good deal of time getting the drug, using the drug or recovering from the effects of the drug
- Failing in your attempts to stop using the drug
- Experiencing withdrawal symptoms when you attempt to stop taking the drug
- Recognizing unhealthy drug use in family members medication
|Additionally sometimes it's difficult to distinguish normal teenage moodiness or angst from signs of drug use. Possible indications that your teenager or other family member is using drugs include:|
|Problems at school or work - frequently missing school or work, a sudden disinterest in school activities or work, or a drop in grades or work performance|
|Physical health issues - lack of energy and motivation, weight loss or gain, or red eyes|
|Neglected appearance - lack of interest in clothing, grooming or looks|
|Changes in behavior - exaggerated efforts to bar family members from entering his or her room or being secretive about where he or she goes with friends; or drastic changes in behavior and in relationships with family and friends|
|Money issues - sudden requests for money without a reasonable explanation; or your discovery that money is missing or has been stolen or that items have disappeared from your home, indicating maybe they're being sold to support drug use.|
|Chaos in the family: the arguments, disharmony coupled with lies and manipulations, increasing mistrust and frustration, rescue from awful situations such as debt, police, hospitals, stealing, abuse depression, hopelessness.|
|Frustration: There’s no answer or cure or effective support and often you lose hope after many 'false' cures or failed treatments.|
|Worry: That your loved one will never live a good life, they may end up in prison or the drinking and drugs may damage them permanently or even kill them.|
|Not Knowing: what is the right or wrong thing to do? Should you give them money to help them or are you then just paying for their drink or drugs? Should you put up with them or should you move them out? Should you give up on them? What should you do? What shouldn’t you do?|
|Cramping, pain, frustration, rage, hunger, confusion, depression, angst with nearly everything, desperation, hopelessness, guilt, fatigue, being a misfit, feeling out of place, misfit, feeling neglected, misunderstood, feeling insecure, being in dis-ease, rejection, feeling like doing anything for a ‘fix’, low self-esteem – Self-worth, borderline suicidal, feeling like the world is swallowing you whole… and the list can go on and on and on...|
Our Treatment Methodology
We usually have the length of our detoxification and rehabilitation stay for a total of 120 days divided into 5 stages that I will explain in greater detail as you read on. With every step of the way we have personal assistance that helps the client adapt and absorb the essence of every stage of the process. Each stage of detoxification and rehabilitation is critical in assisting the client back on their feet with small and immediate goals that help the client recover with ease. Our techniques are easy to adapt and strengthening to the client’s ability to make this crucial recovery. It is critical that the client understands he is supported every step of the way. We encourage positive interactions, harmony amongst clients and counselors, building of self-worth and confidence, rapport building, freedom of expression, social responsibilities, development of essential will power and most critically a spiritual outlook to overcome the mental and physical dilemmas of reintegration back with people and themselves at large.
Usually lasts anywhere between a week to a fortnight depending of the case and severity of the addiction. This stage usually deals with the first fears of the client. Withdrawal can be rough on a client and sometimes this is the greatest fear to overcome. Rest assured withdrawal management is an integrated process and is conducted by a number of qualified professionals. These professionals are certified in medical supervision of addicts be it psychologists or a medical practitioner like a doctor. It is crucial because this is usually the hardest part for an individual to overcome and this stage needs a professional that knows what they’re doing. With alcohol withdrawal, the greatest fear is the severity of the effects that alcohol can have on an individual. We try to make it as stress-free as possible as people have been known to not survive this process of alcoholic detoxification. Ideally this is where motivational counseling acts as a support system to deal with emotional and mental tribulations that one faces during this stage. We encourage light therapy and minor casual duties at this stage to help the client refocus during withdrawal. Additionally, they are also encouraged to communicate with themselves in the attempt to write their stories such that they can begin the process to express themselves on a tangible level. This is also the right time for clients to get oriented on the programme and a detail is taken on each client’s case history.
Sets out with getting back to Nature with morning walks, light yoga, meditation and reintegration on a human level. There is a lot of De-addiction input that happens here along with post-acute withdrawal management and ‘dis-ease’ concepts. Each client gets a personal counselor and over time they start attending AA/NA meetings. Here they are exposed to people with similar situations and they have the ability to assimilate and bring their own stories to bear with people that comprehend their angst and battle so far. Clients can now begin to create new values and foundations of survival and this is where the first healing takes place. This is just still the beginning and they have a long way to go what with regular assignments, value systems and work papers. Critical improvements are encouraging even if they are minuscule and far between because it does take time for any human to recover the effects of deadly intoxication. However, humans are known to be resilient and normally within 24 days we do see many astounding turnarounds and positive reinforcements take hold.
Usually lasts a little longer than the first two stages of breaking free of addiction. Clients are now introduced to the very widely used and often successful 12 step recovery program. This 12 step recovery program is used globally by rehabilitation centers around the world and is closely associated with how an individual is slowly cleansed of the toxin buildup on a physical, mental, emotional and transcendent level. As we are all connected to One Supreme Source of Power or Energy that we sometimes refer to as God, so do we redirect conflict and our emotional baggage to this Supreme Source of All Energy in this 12 Step program. These 12 Steps/ Traditions when followed to some great degree with conviction and support along with clarity and understanding, recovery on multiple aspects are usually seen as internal strength begins to take root and conscious awakening activates. One need not follow every step in this 12 step program, however we encourage certain crucial points and guidelines from this program to make our clients become stronger individuals. There is no magic pill – we now know that. That’s how it stared – Addiction. De-addiction happens out of conviction, positive direction, will power and assimilation based on simple truths like Love and Spiritual Light. In the end it’s human abilities that beat the wickedness of the world. For the power to manage the external has always lain within. This is the strength we garner to fight the repressiveness of our bodies to handle that which is not in our power and is the foundation of this very simple 12 step action plan.
Time too is a great healer and we teach our clients to integrate workable time management techniques and positive short and long term goals. We help the client find focus with simple duties that they are tasked with as a collective along with assignments that we have found to be beneficial to them in their reintegration with society and overall better living. We encourage reading and have a library where they can sit and immerse themselves on values that are spiritual, workable and encouraging. This helps people open up and we see this when clients are encouraged to share their stories at the regular meetings we have as well as with their counselor. This stage usually lasts for a month and one can see renewed hope along with their healing that is now so pivotal to make a complete recovery holistically
is usually a continuation of Stage 3 and within this month we encourage the progression of what was learnt in the previous stage. Instructions are reinforced and made more pronounced in practice, behavioral patterns and outlook. The 12 step Recovery Program is more deeply entrenched and is now practiced more diligently along with healing techniques such as regular Yoga, Meditation, Nature walks, creative and progressive learning and congenial community building. We encourage music, art and drama as a release of talent that can be confidence building and helps in breaking down stigmas that usually hold people back from progressive regeneration. Reluctance, reclusiveness and lack of self-assurance are slowly weaned away and a new human being takes its place on this essential healing curve.
is the assimilation of all the previous Stages that reinforce detox and a cordial working of all the Phases of reintegration of an individual free of addiction. We turn up the tempo of how an individual can deal with themselves. We give them more duties and chores as they continue to detoxify their bodies, minds and spirit. They now can mentor new clients and act as benefactors to those that are still struggling. This helps both the new client and the older one to believe in each other as they continue on in their ability to rid themselves of their situation in the past. Such duties help develop concentration and focus and help build character to overcome their disease in the long run. It teaches responsibility – towards themselves and for others and that is crucial to coherent living especially when they would begin reintegrating with family and friends – especially those they may have hurt or abused in their past.
Once an individual is able to comprehend themselves and the damage they have done, we encourage home visits as it has been 3 months and counting. Clients face their loved ones on their own terms and we assess any progress this has as family and loved ones help with the final bonding and healing process. This is the most powerful tool in healing as love helps overcoming guilt, doubt, conflict, repressive tendencies and abstract insecurities. Admitting the hurt caused and felt is one way that one can be able to monitor themselves and progress made over the tenure of stay with us. Social meetings, shopping, adoption of plants and pets, perpetuity of untapped abilities is the goal here which is to reintegrate with society as a whole. Once this is realized, we believe their rehabilitation is complete and they have been healed to the extent where they can live again with choice, harmony and wellbeing.
As rightly said, we do have two hands, one to help yourself and second to help others. A true example set by both Anand and my heartiest best wishes for the HELP center and thanks for taking initiative towards betterment of the society.
Amazing non profit organisation. An initiative undertaken by the Humans of Darjeeling. Splendid facility and the best part is the guidance and support given by the faculty members of this organisation. In house physical therapist and psychologist is the best part of this organisation.
Their first priority was "help" and that one reference turned out to be a living miracle for us with their help Give "help" a chance to make a difference - you wudnt regret your choice.