How to help an addict

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How to help an alcoholic

An important part of premature mortality has to do with the use of addictive substances. It is in our power that this serious problem is reduced and completely eliminated for what we must know everything related to addiction and how to help an addict.

What is addiction?

According to the World Health Organization (WHO), addiction is a physical and psycho-emotional illness made up of desires that consume the feelings and thoughts of the sufferer.

There are 2 types of addiction:

  • with substances (addiction to alcohol or alcoholism, addiction to marijuana, addiction to cocaine ...)
  • without substances (addiction to gambling, sex, food ...).

In this case we will focus on substance addiction.

What is being addicted?

The Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, used by Psychologists and Psychiatrists worldwide, recognizes a series of criteria to diagnose that a person is dependent on substances:

A) A maladaptive pattern that leads to clinically significant impairment or discomfort in the person, expressed by three or more of the following characteristics:

  • Tolerance, defined by a need for markedly increasing amounts of the substance to achieve intoxication, or the desired effect.
  • Withdrawal, defined as the characteristic withdrawal syndrome for the substance or the same substance (or a very similar one) is taken to alleviate or avoid withdrawal symptoms.
  • the substance is consumed in larger amounts or for a longer period than originally intended.
  • there is a persistent desire or unsuccessful efforts to control or discontinue use of the substance.
  • a lot of time is spent on activities related to obtaining the substance, consuming the substance, or recovering from its effects.
  • Reduction or abandonment of important social, work or recreational activities due to the consumption of the substance.
  • the substance is continued to be used despite being aware of persistent psychological or physical problems that appear to be caused or exacerbated by the use of the substance (for example, using cocaine knowing that it causes rebound depression).

How to help an addict?

To help an addict, regardless of the substance to which they are addicted, the following steps should be followed:

  • The first and foremost is the fact that the addict be aware of your illness. If the addict does not recognize himself as such, it is very difficult to start a treatment for his cure. To do this, you must talk to the person and make them understand that they have a problem. Know the characteristics of addiction and the symptoms and signs it causes in order to know how to recognize it.
  • Do not blame or judge the sick, just talk to him in an assertive way and show him the support and help he deserves.
  • Do not make this topic a taboo subject and act naturally and temperance. In other words, speaking with the patient with complete confidence will make them feel more comfortable and less judged, which in turn will help very positively in their attitude towards treatment.
  • Encourage you to seek Professional Help.
  • Support unconditionally to the sick in his big step. It is very difficult for an addict to go for a consultation so we must support him and reinforce the great effort he is making.
  • If he prefers, accompany the patient in their first consultation. This will not only help the patient, but will also serve the psychologist as another figure of reference with which to deal with the matter.

It is very hard to recover from an addict, but Following these steps under the principles of unconditional love and support we will achieve May that person come out of the hole and find the happiness and fulfillment that they so deserve.

IMPORTANT: If you think you have a problem that you cannot solve yourself, do not hesitate to go to a Psychologist. You can access it through the Social Security Family Doctor, who will refer you to the specialist and will attend you for free.

Greetings and a big hug, Andrea.

Keep reading:

  • 9 Keys to Help a Person with Depression
  • Help others
  • Preventing Your Teen From Using Drugs
  • How to be assertive in 7 steps

Video: Dr Robert Lefever - How To Help an Addict


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