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Interventions for Addiction

If you are thinking of staging an intervention for a loved one with a drug or alcohol problem, it is crucial to have all the facts. Learn how to support and help an addict as they work on healing their minds and bodies.

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    Understanding Interventions

    Helping an alcoholic is not easy. It requires a lot of love, patience, and care. One of the ways that you can help an alcoholic is through something called an intervention.
    When looking at substance or alcohol abuse, an intervention is an organized confrontation of a loved one suffering from the disease. The goal is to speak with this person about how their behavior affects those in their lives. It assists you in demonstrating how drugs or alcohol have become a problem in their life.
    When people hear the word intervention, they often think of a treatment that involves doctors and a therapist. However, in this case, an intervention is not a clinical treatment but more of a loving conversation. Professionals take the form of concerned third parties who want to make sure that they can offer the best support possible.
    If you are thinking of staging an intervention, it is essential to make sure you do so with professional guidance. These intervention specialists can help guide the intervention to ensure productivity and get the addict to seek help.

    Staging an Effective Intervention

    There are plenty of counselors out there who can help prepare a confrontation with a loved one. They’ll guide you through creating a controlled environment that can make the addict feel comfortable. These intervention specialists also offer assistance, which will help prepare you for the types of answers the addict may give and help foster a situation that will encourage active listening. 

    These interventions are often planned ahead of time so that the person struggling with addiction is not blindsided. That is because, although surprise interventions do work, preparing the addict ahead of time can make it more likely they listen to what you and your party have to say.

    Behavioral problems that indicate an intervention is needed include:
    • Excessive alcohol use
    • Misuse of prescription drugs
    • Illicit drug use
    • Compulsive or excessive eating
    • Compulsive or excessive gambling
    • Drastic weight gain or weight loss

    While this isn’t an exhaustive list, it can warn you of a few signs and symptoms that a member of your family or your social circles require a supportive intervention from you and others who care for them. 

    The Success of Interventions

    In general, intervention studies have shown enough effectiveness for intervention practices to be widely accepted in the behavioral healthcare and addiction treatment field. They are used as a method for families to help guide a struggling friend or family member toward the help they need, and most professionals in this space think them an important part of the recovery process.

    There is no guarantee of success with interventions, and what works for some does not necessarily work for everyone. If you’re thinking of using an intervention to help support a loved one, it is important to remember that this method may or may not work as imagined. It is up to you and the group you are teaming up with to decide whether an intervention would be the right choice in your particular situation. In either case, an intervention specialist is highly recommended to increase the odds your intervention is successful and leads to desirable outcomes.

    Different Types of Interventions

    Interventions do not consist of a single method, with several different alcohol and drug interventions alone. The kind of intervention that you choose to implement will depend on the goals you set forth, the level of addiction, and the dynamic of the group conducting the intervention. Here are several popular and effective models that demonstrate how to stage an intervention:

    The Johnson Model

    The Johnson Model was one of the first intervention methods created by Vernon Johnson. In this situation, a family employs a guided interventionist who speaks with the loved one about the issue. This classical intervention method typically takes the loved one by surprise, and the person undergoing the intervention has no prior knowledge of the plan. 

    Invitation Model

    Another standard model of intervention is the Invitation Model. This method is sometimes referred to as the Systemic Family Intervention method and was developed by Ed Speare and Wayne Raiter. This behavioral intervention method involves the family and the rest of the loved one’s support network. What happens is that the support network brings the loved one to a planned event or workshop to discuss the addiction and help alert the individual to what their struggles are.

    The Field Model of Intervention

    The Field Model of Intervention is similar to the Johnson Model. In this approach, a family or support network takes a confrontational approach to the situation. They do not alert the loved one to the intervention and are trained to handle any crises or issues that arise from the intervention. This model is recommended for family members suffering from suicidal thoughts, bipolar disorder, or other diseases that may lead to self-harm. 

    Alternatives to Interventions

    Interventions are not the only way to stand by and support a loved one who is struggling with addiction. Community Reinforcement and Family Training, or CRAFT, is a method that can help give families the knowledge and resources they need to be there for their loved ones. 

    CRAFT helps families assist loved ones by helping them:
    • Identify substance use triggers
    • Break enabling patterns
    • Develop better communication
    • Learn to practice self-care and self-love

    Support The People You Love

    Whether you are taking a classic approach to intervention or looking at an alternative, we understand and can help support and guide you. We know how deeply you care about your struggling loved one, and our Treatment Navigators are standing by to offer a hand. Call us today.

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