Drug Treatment Characteristics That May be
Drug treatment overview:
treatment means intervening and changing an individual's life using
psychological, pharmacological and social methods. Many drug treatment options
exist that you may choose from. Below, we will describe some of the general
characteristics of drug treatments that may be helpful for you to know when
deciding on the best treatment for yourself or loved ones. The major drug
treatment characteristics can be classified under four basic categories:
Setting characteristics include whether it is an inpatient or an outpatient drug
treatment facility, community facilities (churches, schools and community
centers) that offer self-help, or peer counseling, or including such virtual
settings as the telephone or Internet.
Drug treatment modalities come in several varieties including the drug
treatment team approach consisting of physicians, counselors, nurses, social
workers, psychologists; self-help treatment approaches; individual counseling
based on a specific treatment model (for example cognitive-behavioral or
psychodynamic psychotherapy); group therapy or psychopharmacology.
Psychopharmacology is a specific form of drug treatment in which physicians
use medical drugs to help people with their symptoms, cravings and many of their
difficult behavior problems. There are specific pharmacological methods for
treating both alcohol and drug dependence, which will be described on subsequent
There are various different types of providers who
provide services in drug treatment programs. Drug treatment clinicians and also
non-clinicians (nonprofessionals) may be used to provide addiction related
services. 12-step programs include sponsors which guide people through the
process of recovery, and support them in the process. Addiction counselors,
physicians (some are addiction specialists and some are not), psychologists,
social workers, nutritionists, exercise therapists, and various others
frequently work within these programs. Each different type of provider works
within at least one and frequently several different types of modalities, which
involves bringing their own attitudes and beliefs as well as their own
theoretical orientations to the process of drug treatment.
The duration of drug treatment is an important consideration when you're trying
to decide what is most appropriate for your circumstances. This is known to be
an extremely controversial area because of the recurrent nature of addiction,
the relative lack of research and wide-ranging expert opinions involved.
Various drug treatment
options will be described on many of these pages in relation to the four
categories described above. In considering your various drug treatment options,
decide whether you have preferences in respect to the setting in which the
treatment program operates, modalities and the types of providers that you would
like have access to throughout the duration of your drug treatment.
Information from Addiction
and Recovery for Dummies by Brian F. Shaw PhD, Paul Rivto PhD, and Jane Irvine
Information and webpage by
MA Licensed Psychologist Ph.D.
(Health and Geriatric Psychologist
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