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Points To Remember When You Are Deciding A Heroin Rehab Treatment

Aug 26, 2008
The following are some important points that you need to keep in mind when you are looking for heroin rehab treatment for someone in your family.

1. Make sure to check the kind of program the treatment center follows thoroughly. This should be one of your first considerations. Remember that "heroin treatment" is an umbrella term. There are several different kinds of treatments involved within this canopy such as the outpatient treatment program, the detox program, the rehab program, the day treatment program, the residential treatment program, etc. You must make sure that the program you are planning is suitable for the needs of the patient in question.

2. See that the program is a qualified program. This is essential because these are the programs that are approved by the state authorities. These are the programs that are tried and tested by the substance abuse authorities of the state and hence are better in their principles and methods to provide for treatment. On the other hand, there are several nonqualified treatment programs in every state, such as the holistic programs, the faith-based programs and the spiritual treatment programs, which might not be suitable to the needs of the patient.

There are also some practical difficulties in going through the nonqualified treatment programs too. These programs are more expensive, because they will not have state funding in most cases. Since these programs are not approved by that state, the insurance companies will also flinch in providing them coverage. Hence, you need to be cautious when you are selecting programs that are not qualified.

There are several places where you can make sure the program you are considering is qualified or not. One place is the state health website. There is usually a list of all permissible programs on the state website. You can also find this information on the various federal substance abuse websites such as the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration, the National Clearinghouse and the National Institute of Drug Abuse.

3. Next, look at what kind of medication the heroin rehab treatment center will be using. There are two types of medication that are popular in the US. These are methadone and buprenorphine. Though methadone is the older of the two, it is a highly addictive substance in itself and if things go wrong with the treatment, the person will end up with a methadone addiction instead of heroin. That is why it is needed that only an experienced treatment center handle this kind of treatment. Buprenorphine is a safer medicine for that matter. Though it also acts by replacing a person's heroin craving with itself, it is not quite as addictive as methadone is and hence can be more easily used for the treatment.

It becomes important for you to consider what kind of medication will be used because a lot of the manner in which the treatment will go ahead will depend on the kind of medication used. Buprenorphine is a newer method of treatment and hence people still rely on methadone to a larger extent. This also has a placebo effect on people. If the patient is keener on a particular kind of treatment, there are chances that he or she will respond to that kind of treatment more.

Whether the heroin rehab treatment is inpatient or outpatient might also differ on the kind of medication that is used. Methadone is usually administered on an inpatient basis because of its highly addictive nature. Buprenorphine, on the other hand, has outpatient treatment program for heroin addiction possible in most states.

4. You must be discerning and check all the licenses and other qualifications of the heroin rehab treatment centers you are thinking about. Remember that just a general drug addiction treatment license won't suffice; they must be qualified for heroin treatment. This is a necessity. At the same time, you must ensure that the treatment providers are also well qualified in this form of treatment. Check the experiences of both the treatment center and the providers, especially looking at whether they have dealt with heroin addiction treatment in the past or not.

5. Look also at what facilities the heroin rehab treatment center will provide you with. Detox is a very important part of heroin addiction treatment, but not all treatment centers have their own detox programs. If there is no detox in the center, they might refer the patient to an outside center, which could be a problem. Similarly, look at whether the nursing care is continuous or just for a few hours each day.
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