I Tried to Treat Methamphetamine Abuse Without Professional Meth Addiction Treatment; It Wasn’t a Good Decision

28 November 2016 Categories: Health & Wellness, Lifestyle

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Initially, I didn’t admit I was a meth addict to myself. It was rationalized as a natural part of the party. My friends used meth and they seemed fine to me. They were fun and they had their meth use under control, right? No, they didn’t, and neither did I.

Once I admitted it, I knew I needed help, but professional meth addiction treatment felt like such a big step. I wasn’t ready. I still thought I could exercise some control. I could surely treat methamphetamine abuse at home. But, I soon discovered that wasn’t the case.

My First Detox Attempt Failed

I knew that meth withdrawal symptoms wouldn’t put me in danger of dying like the ones people experience when they stop using opiates and alcohol. I thought that meant that I could just lock myself in my house without meth and go without until the symptoms were over. The first time I tried, I folded and went out to get meth on the second day.

The first attempt at detox was disappointing, but the next one was scary.

My Second Detox Attempt Got Dangerous

When I was ready to try again, I took more precautions to keep me from going out to score meth. But, I didn’t fully prepare for the crushing depression that set in. The Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration points out that some meth users experience severe dysphoria during detox. This means negative thought, depression, and negative feelings.

My dysphoria triggered suicidal thoughts and I felt like it was better that I went back to using meth than feel like I was going to kill myself.

I Needed Professional Meth Addiction Treatment

My attempts to treat methamphetamine abuse on my own varied. In one situation, I proved that I couldn’t limit my use successfully. In the other, I discovered that my treatment could potentially leave me dead because of the crippling depression I felt. The next time I tried to stop using meth I did so at a professional rehab; for the first time, I was able to get through detox and transition into a full recovery in treatment.

Meth Addiction Treatment May Use Mindfulness Practice to Treat Methamphetamine Abuse

Experts in addiction science believe that is natural for people to seek out pleasure and to avoid pain as much as possible. This is what drives people to develop avoidance and coping mechanisms. Meth use falls into these categories.

When people enter professional meth addiction treatment, the center treat methamphetamine abuse by learning to control or avoid the triggers that lead to meth use. This is fairly successful, but that doesn’t mean that people don’t look for other treatment methods. This has led to the development of Mindful-Based Relapse Prevention.

What Is Mindfulness-Based Relapse Prevention?

This program is a lot like the Mindful-Based Cognitive Therapy that is used to treat depression. It is essentially a program that is done as part of the aftercare portion of meth addiction treatment.

It is bet for people who have had professional help to treat methamphetamine abuse. It helps these people maintain the progress they made in treatment and to create a life that supports their recovery and well being.

What Are the Goals of Mindfulness-Based Relapse Prevention?

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When people participate in Mindfulness-Based Relapse Prevention, they work on:

  • Developing an awareness of habitual reactions and personal triggers, and they learn to pause these processes
  • Modifying their relationship to discomfort by identifying challenging physical and emotional experiences and responding to them in skilled ways
  • Fostering a compassionate, nonjudgmental approach toward themselves and their experiences
  • Building a life that supports both their recovery and their mindfulness practice

Does It Work?

There is plenty of anecdotal evidence that Mindfulness-Based Relapse Prevention works. But there is also research based evidence.

For example, a study published in the Journal of the American Medical Association compared Mindfulness-Based Relapse Prevention with a standard relapse prevention program and a traditional 12-step approach.

When participants were revisited at the six month mark, both the Mindfulness-Based Relapse Prevention method and the standard program were more effective than the 12 step program. At the one year mark, the Mindfulness-Based Relapse Prevention produced better outcomes than either of the other two methods.

You Will Need the Peers You Meet in Meth Addiction Treatment to Help You Treat Methamphetamine Abuse

Traditionally, a peer is a person of the same standing. If you are part of a middle-class neighborhood, your neighbors are probably your peers. In meth addiction treatment, your peers are people who, like you, are struggling to overcome their addiction to meth. These people will be an important part of the way you treat methamphetamine abuse.

In some meth addiction treatment programs, peer support might be a formal part of the care you receive. In other settings, the support of peers may develop informally.

What Are the Types of Peer Support??

According to the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration, peers provide the following types of support:

  • Affiliation: help building a community and developing a sense of belonging
  • Informational: sharing knowledge
  • Emotional: demonstrating concern and empathy

When these forms of support are provided, both parties benefit.

What Sort of Peer Interactions Occur in Meth Addiction Treatment?

The programs used to treat methamphetamine abuse use peer support in multiple ways. Group therapy is a popular way to take advantage of on the social strengthening presented by peer discussion. This can happen in support groups, like 12-step ones. People are encouraged to participate during formal treatment and to continue doing so as part of aftercare.

How Will I Benefit from Peer Support?

Participants in a peer support program experience both tangible and intangible benefits. Each individual will take away something different. Ultimately, these interactions aim to keep people in recovery and to strengthen then during that time.

Benefits include:

  • Providing a safe place to socialize, which offers a no pressure setting for interaction, a sense of belonging, and a feeling of community
  • Enriching spiritual values
  • Working on problem solving
  • Sharing personal stories
  • Learning new skills
  • Offering a place to practice social skills
  • Providing service to peers
  • Developing leadership
  • Promoting shared values


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