Ativan Rehab Aftercare and Relapse Prevention
- Is Ativan Rehab Aftercare Necessary?
- The Benefit of Ativan Relapse Prevention
- Ativan Abuse is a Chronic Condition
- Continuing Care Options
- Supporting Family and Friends with Ativan Recovery
What is Ativan Rehab Aftercare?Aftercare services prolong support while adjustments to a newly sober life are made. The longer one participates in addiction recovery services, the better the chances of having a sustained recovery.
Is Ativan Rehab Aftercare Necessary?
Ativan is highly addictive. Consequently, the relapse rate is high. For those who have experienced prolonged or heavy use, there are significant lingering factors after rehab that contribute to relapse. These include:
- Neurological changes causing cravings and discomfort for some months (protracted withdrawal).
- Psychological dependency upon Ativan to cope with the stress and discomfort of daily life.
- The tendency of another substance to be abused when abstinent from Ativan.
The Benefit of Ativan Relapse Prevention
Optimally, services should extend from rehab to a prolonged period of recovery because Ativan addiction creates a psychological dependence that makes the return home from rehab a critical time. Aftercare has been recognized as an essential component of a comprehensive management plan for benzodiazepine addicted individuals. Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT) in conjunction with relaxation training--as offered as an adjunct to a gradual tapering off of the drug--has been found to be effective in reducing benzodiazepine use beyond the initial few weeks.
Optimally, services should extend from rehab to a prolonged period of recovery because Ativan addiction creates a psychological dependence that makes the return home from rehab a critical time.
Aftercare has been recognized as an essential component of a comprehensive management plan for benzodiazepine addicted individuals. Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT) in conjunction with relaxation training--as offered as an adjunct to a gradual tapering off of the drug--has been found to be effective in reducing benzodiazepine use beyond the initial few weeks.
Ativan Abuse is a Chronic Condition
Addiction is a chronic relapsing condition best treated with a variety of approaches that must be adapted at the different phases of recovery. Addiction is similar in its course to other chronic relapsing conditions such as diabetes, asthma and hypertension. Comparing their relapse rates, the similarities become quite apparent: addiction 40-60%; diabetes 30-50%; hypertension 50-70% and asthma 50-70%. Relapse rates close to 60 percent have also been reported for benzodiazepine addiction.
An array of services after rehab best ensures sustained recovery. Long-term goals are:
- To prevent the return to Ativan use or another abusable substance.
- To prolong periods between relapses.
- To mitigate the severity and length of relapse when it happens.
Continuing Care Options
Continuing care describes stages of Ativan treatment over an extended period that meets the changing needs of early recovery and even beyond.
Counseling Interventions/Group Therapy
Ativan addiction has many components that can be effectively addressed in counseling. These include thoughts, feelings, beliefs and behaviors that have contributed to use and that can lead to relapse. Particular therapies have proven very effective in helping one address these so recovery can be maintained. For example, group sessions in which recovering peers are present have proven to increase one's affiliation with self-help meetings in the community.
Other well-documented and effective therapies are CBT-related relapse prevention; Motivational Interviewing and mindfulness/meditation techniques. With these, one can replace self-sabotaging thoughts, manage emotions, decrease stress, improve self-awareness and choose healthier behaviors.
12-Step Facilitation Treatment
This form of aftercare introduces the concepts of 12-Step programs such as Alcoholics Anonymous (AA) and Narcotics Anonymous (NA), as well as smaller fellowships such as Pills Anonymous. Participation in 12-Step groups has proven to prolong abstinence and to be a valuable addition to any other relapse prevention effort. Spiritual issues are considered intricately tied to addiction and recovery in these programs.
- Accepting addiction has made life unmanageable.
- Finding serenity and gratitude in one's life.
- Connecting with a Higher Power.
- Supporting others.
- Examining your actions and their effects upon others.
- Making amends to those you have harmed.
12 step facilitation treatment has been identified as an important adjunct to the medical management of drug addiction. In spite of limited research for alcohol and cocaine addiction, it has been reported to hold promise for other drugs of abuse in improving long term treatment outcomes.
Follow-up Medical Care
Toxicity in Ativan addiction occurs over a prolonged period and can cause a range of complications. These can include, but are not limited to:
- A decline in cognitive abilities and memory.
- Increased anxiety.
- Panic attacks.
- GI conditions.
- Liver problems
- Compromised immunity.
Life-time major depressive disorder and panic disorder have been reported to occur in up to one third individuals each with severe benzodiazepine dependence. Some will try to self-medicate such conditions with Ativan and leaving them unresolved after rehab creates a significant relapse risk.
- Offering a comprehensive intervention package with integrated intensive outpatient treatments, case management services and behavioral therapies such as Contingency Management has been recommended for treatment of severe co-morbid conditions among individuals with drug addiction.
- Finally, various medical as well as behavioral interventions can help address the underlying sleep problem that could have lead to Ativan abuse.
Sober Living/Alcohol and Drug-Free Housing
The social network established in sober living communities appears to improve a wide range of addiction-related issues. These include:
- Decreasing or stopping use if relapse has occurred.
- Decreasing the number of arrests and mental health emergencies.
- Increasing the chances of getting and maintaining employment.
- Residents have been found to have improved psychological, occupational and legal outcomes following their stay in the therapeutic community.
- Special population groups such as those with co-morbid psychiatric disorders also stand to gain from such treatment settings.
- Also, therapeutic community has been shown to be viable in prison setting as well.
Contingency management uses positive reinforcement, or rewards, to motivate abstinence and treatment participation. Rewards include incentives like vouchers that can be used to purchase items services. Another type of program gives prize incentives such as 'tickets' for cash drawings. Vouchers and prize incentives are given for attending therapy sessions, recovery activities and giving negative drug screens.
Supporting Family and Friends with Ativan Recovery
Supporting someone in Ativan recovery can be stressful at times.
- Withdrawal discomfort can persist for some months after detox causing emotional distress and anxiety.
- Your loved one may want frequent reassurance and emotional support during this time.
- Keep in mind that, they may not only feel physically unwell, but they're coming to terms with the fact that they can no longer rely on Ativan for all sorts of comfort and coping.
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