Do I Really NEED Rehab?

Addictions Content Team Info icon
Calendar icon Last Updated: 09/16/2021

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Unfortunately, for true, full-blown addiction, rehab is almost always necessary. Without this option, it can be extremely difficult to quit as well as much more likely that you will relapse back to substance abuse.

Why Do Most People Need Rehab?

Most people who become addicted to a drug need rehab in order to stop. This is because, over time, their use of the drug changes the way they think and the way their brain works so that it becomes harder and harder to stop. The longer someone abuses drugs and the more often this abuse occurs, the more intense these changes become.

According to the National Institute on Drug Abuse, “The path to drug addiction begins with the voluntary act of taking drugs. But over time, a person’s ability to choose not to do so becomes compromised.” The brain begins to crave the drug over everything else so that the individual will then abuse the drug compulsively. Without the help of professional treatment and healthcare providers who understand the issue of addiction, it can be almost impossible for many addicts to stop.

What Can Rehab Do for Me?

You may be wondering what rehab is really like or how it can actually help you. For one thing, it is much safer than attempting to recover on your own. Rehab is extremely effective for the treatment of addiction, and according to the NIDA, it helps to minimize the likelihood of relapse, reduce criminal activity, and “improve… occupational, social, and psychological functioning.”

In addition, rehab can

  • Minimize the severity of withdrawal symptoms and cravings through the use of medications like buprenorphine and methadone (for opioid addicts), acamprosate and disulfiram (for alcoholics), and others
  • Help patients understand why they began abusing drugs in the first place, which can reduce one’s chances of relapse
  • Provide patients with the tools to cope with stress, cravings, and other issues that could potentially lead to relapse
  • Uncover additional issues, like mood disorders, that could be intensifying the effects of an addiction or worsening as the result of an addiction
  • Provide patients with aftercare options, like booster sessions, that can help them stay on the right track and continue having a strong recovery

Do I Need Rehab?

If you are suffering from an addiction, then you should attend rehab. Sometimes, it can be difficult to know objectively if you are an addict and if you will be able to stop abusing drugs on your own. But more often than not, it is safer and more effective to attend addiction treatment than to try to go through recovery without any kind of help.

Still, there are ways of knowing if rehab is the best choice for your current situation. Talking to your doctor can allow you to have a more comprehensive view of addiction as it pertains to your situation. Also, you can consider the questions below.

  • Have you tried to cut back or stop using before and been unsuccessful?
  • Do you notice yourself thinking about using drugs even when you are not?
  • Have you ever experienced withdrawal symptoms associated with your substance abuse?
  • Have any of your loved ones expressed concern for your wellbeing or the severity of your substance abuse?
  • Have you noticed intense changes in the way you function, act toward others, or feel as a result of your use?
  • Have you experienced any severe consequences of your substance abuse, such as:
    • Being reprimanded at work or getting fired?
    • Losing an important relationship?
    • Experiencing financial problems?
    • Getting arrested?

If you have experienced any of these issues, it is important that you seek out a rehab program. Your substance abuse has become problematic in your life, and it is likely that you won’t be able to successfully or safely put a stop to it without professional treatment.

Rehab Can Help

Most addicts need rehab to fight their addictions and make a change in their lives. However, the program you choose should be appropriate for your needs and situation as well.