Information for Patients & Clients
The leaflets are user friendly, readable and contain evidence based information about mental health problems and treatments.
Addiction is a disease – Treatment is available – Recovery brings joy!
How do I know if I am addicted?
If you can’t stop taking a drug even if you want to, or if the urge to use drugs is too strong to control, even if you know the drug is causing harm, you might be addicted. Here are some questions to ask yourself:
- Do you think about drugs a lot?
- Did you ever try to stop or cut down on your drug usage but couldn’t?
- Have you ever thought you couldn’t fit in or have a good time without the use of drugs?
- Do you ever use drugs because you are upset or angry at other people?
- Have you ever used a drug without knowing what it was or what it would do to you?
- Have you ever taken one drug to get over the effects of another?
- Have you ever made mistakes at a job or at school because you were using drugs?
- Does the thought of running out of drugs really scare you?
- Have you ever stolen drugs or stolen to pay for drugs?
- Have you ever been arrested or in the hospital because of your drug use?
- Have you ever overdosed on drugs?
- Has using drugs hurt your relationships with other people?
If the answer to some or all of these questions is yes, you might have an addiction. People from all backgrounds can get an addiction. Addiction can happen at any age, but it usually starts when a person is young. See the National Institue of Drug Abuse’s video, below:
Through scientific advances, we know more than ever about how drugs work in the brain. We also know that drug addiction can be successfully treated to help people stop abusing drugs and lead productive lives.
Why can’t I stop using drugs on my own?
Repeated drug use changes the brain, including parts of the brain that enable you to exert self-control. These and other changes can be seen clearly in brain imaging studies of people with drug addictions. These brain changes explain why quitting is so difficult, even if you feel ready. National Institute of Drug Abuse has an excellent video below:
Why Are Drugs So Hard to Quit?
If I want help, where do I start?
Asking for help is the first important step. At the Behman Hospital and the Behman Consultancy Clinics, we have several certified physicians, psychologists and counselors who are specialized in addiction treatment. It takes a lot of courage to seek help for a drug problem because there is a lot of hard work ahead. However, treatment can work, and people recover from addiction every day. Like other chronic diseases, addiction can be managed successfully. Treatment enables people to counteract addiction’s powerful, disruptive effects on brain and behavior and regain control of their lives.
Will I need to stop taking drugs immediately?
The first step in treatment is “detox,” which helps patients to remove all of the drugs from their system. This is important, because drugs impair the mental abilities you need to stay in treatment. When patients first stop abusing drugs, they can experience a variety of physical and emotional withdrawal symptoms, including depression, anxiety, and other mood disorders; restlessness; and sleeplessness. At the Behman Hospital we are very experienced in helping you get through this process and keeping you safe. Depending on what drug you are addicted to, there may also be medications that will make you feel a little better during drug withdrawal, which makes it easier to stop using.
Will I be treated by a doctor?
There are different kinds of addiction specialists who will be involved in your care, including doctors, nurses, therapists, psychologists and others.
Will I need medication?
There are medications available to treat addictions to alcohol, nicotine, and opioids (heroin and pain relievers). Other medications are available to treat possible mental health conditions (such as depression) that may be contributing to your addiction. In addition, nonaddictive medication is sometimes prescribed to help with drug withdrawal. When medication is available, it can be combined with behavioral therapy to ensure success for most patients. Your treatment provider will advise you on what medications are available for your particular situation. Some treatment centers follow the philosophy that they should not treat a drug addiction with other drugs, but research shows that medication can help in many cases.
What if I have been in rehab before?
This means you have already learned many of the skills needed to recover from addiction and should try it again. Relapse should not discourage you. Relapse rates with addiction are similar to rates for other chronic diseases many people live with, such as hypertension, diabetes, and asthma. Treatment of chronic diseases involves changing deeply imbedded behaviors, and relapse sometimes goes with the territory—it does not mean that treatment has failed. A return to drug abuse indicates that treatment needs to be started again or adjusted, or that you might benefit from a different approach.
If I seek treatment, I am worried other people will find out. How do I keep it quiet?
You can tell your employer or friends you need to go on medical leave. If you talk to your doctor or another medical expert, confidentiality prevent him or her from sharing your medical information with anyone outside of the health care system without your permission. In addition, most health care providers who specialize in addiction treatment can’t share your information with anyone (even other providers) without your written permission.
If you think you or one of your loved ones is addicted, asking for help is the first important step. Recovery is possible. And recovery brings joy!