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Treating Addiction: Alcohol Abuse Treatment Centers

Updated on June 30, 2010

It is an unfortunate fact that the majority of people who experience substance abuse problems for a number of reasons never receive the assistance that they so desperately need. There exists a growing body of evidence which proves that individuals exposed to particular types of treatment in Alcohol and Drug Treatment Centers experience the result that their use of psychoactive substances is subsequently reduced and improvement in the other various areas of the person's life show a significant amelioration as well.

An extensive body of medical clinical research has been conducted on the specific subject of administering treatment in Alcohol Treatment Centers for individuals with alcohol and other drug problems. It must be considered whenever examining the results of such clinical research that the majority of the studies considered have not utilized a strategy of complete abstinence as the only or even main measurement of success. Instead, they have utilized several continuous outcome measures such as percentage of alcohol drink days, amount consumed per alcohol drink occasion and other similar factors.

This aspect of the research points out a perspective of substance abuse as a chronic condition which is subject to relapse, and for which the various goals of either amelioration or outright termination of the condition may be appropriate. Similarly to the way that many other chronic conditions are approached, such as obesity, asthma, or diabetes, the expectation that substance abuse will be completely and/or permanently eliminated following a single intervention of treatment in Alcohol Treatment Centers is to be considered wholly unrealistic. It is now obvious after several decades of medical studies that there is no magic bullet to cure any of these conditions. It should also be considered that considerable improvements may follow medical and psychological interventions, and that these results can be quantified and reported clearly.

When considering pharmacotherapies, four separate drug classes are categorized:

- Psychotropic drugs.
- Antidipsotropic drugs.
- Anti-crave drugs.

Psychotropic Substance Therapy

Psychotropic drugs are a type of medication which is implemented to ameliorate the individual's psychological status based on the expectation that this type of strategy will result in diminished consumption of alcohol. This type of medication includes anti-psychotic substances, anti-anxiety pharmaceuticals, anti-depressant drugs, and psychedelics as well as lithium. Research has shown that there is a substantial amount of evidence to conclude that the utilization of anti-depressant medications can be a precursor to positive results in the course of treatment in Alcohol Treatment Centers of alcohol-related problems. In the case of lithium the evidence is still indeterminate; in the case of antipsychotic medication it is too restricted to merit definitive conclusions; and in the case of psychedelics and antianxiety drugs the clinical evidence is quite firmly not championing their implementation.

Antidipsotropic Substance Therapy

Antidipsotropic drugs are a type of medication which is known to provoke an repulsive reaction when utilized in conjunction with alcohol. Implants of disulfiram are acknowledged to have a reasonable amount of clinical evidence to vouch for their effectiveness. Some researchers place this therapy on a more or less equivalent effectiveness index with marital behavioral therapy as well as social skills training.

Continued In - Treating Addiction: Alcohol Abuse Treatment Centers Part 2

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