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Some Special Forms of Substance Abuse Treatment in Alaska

Jul 16, 2008
Alaska may be far removed from the mainland of the US, but that does not mean it has not accepted all the prevailing forms of addiction treatment in the nation. You will find various kinds of substance abuse treatment in Alaska which are mainly designed at the specific needs of the people who are hooked to some or the other kind of chemical. These programs are designed depending on the degree and extent of the addiction the person is in and what kind of care will be needed at that state. Most of these programs are a judicious blend of both medical and nonmedical methods that work alongside each other to bring the best form of treatment for the patient and to lead them to sustainable recovery.

The following are two of the special forms of substance abuse treatment in Alaska that have made an appearance of late. Both of them are quite different in their approach and cater to different kinds of people.

Day Treatment Program

The day treatment program has become quite popular in America recently and Alaska has its own version of it. In most treatment centers that provide a day treatment program in America, people struggling with mild to moderate forms of addiction are allowed to participate. Actually, this is an extended version of the outpatient treatment program. The person is not isolated, but has to visit the treatment center for three to four hours a day, mostly on a daily basis. Most centers for substance abuse treatment in Alaska will conduct the program for all seven days a week, though some might give the weekends off.

The program incorporates both individual and group training methods. When conducted in the group format, about six patients who have a similar level of dependency are taken at a time. These patients are counseled on various aspects of the treatment, including what their substance abuse can lead them to, its social, familial, individual and professional repercussions and they are coached on how they can fight against the abuse and come to a normal sober life. Since people are taken in a group, it becomes a good opportunity to use behavioral therapies, including motivational treatment which can really help people to come out of their habit.

On an individual basis, some expert counseling is provided to help people come out of their emotional issues that might be tied up with the addiction. They are taught how to identify the signs of an incoming urge for the substance and what they must do in order to come out of that.

The day treatment program has become quite popular in Alaska because it provides people with the opportunity of participating in their other obligations which taking the treatment. In that way, they do not lose out on their social and professional life.

Dual Diagnosis Approach of Treatment

The dual diagnosis approach of substance abuse treatment in Alaska has existed since a long time, but it is only now that it is being accepted to such a great degree. This program focuses on treating coexisting problems together. In case of substance abuse treatment, the patient will usually have a psychiatric problem to go along with their chemical dependency. Common psychiatric ailments that are treated simultaneously with substance abuse in Alaska include schizophrenia, bipolar disorder, depression, panic disorder, stress disorder, hallucinations, phobias and other conditions of a similar order. Each of these can seriously impede the progress of the treatment and hence need to be looked into together.

When the dual diagnosis treatment is being conducted in Alaska, the first thing that will happen will be to place the patient into a detox treatment program. The detox here is different from the normal detox treatment program in Alaska, in that it will be more drastic because of the underlying condition. For that reason, this treatment program may run longer than normal. However, the detox treatment is carried out to completion, i.e. until the withdrawal effects due to the detox are no longer persistent.

Once the detox is conducted, the patient is put under psychiatric treatment. Here, an evaluator will first determine the extent of their addiction which will help them to decide what form of treatment must be provided for them. Once that is done, the further treatment program will be chalked out.
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