Behavioral Treatment Programs For Methamphetamine Addiction

1694 words - 7 pages

Methamphetamine is a powerful and dangerous drug. It has the reputation as being a delightful and sneaky drug that robs your body of life. Although it has been around for over sixty years, it is only in the last 30 years that people have realized what a significant problem it has caused. Treatment for Methamphetamine remains mainly in the experimental stages and needs more research to find the exact treatment protocol.

Methamphetamine addiction is extremely hard to treat (Lee& Rawson, 2009). The main reasons are due to the length of time it takes for the drug to pass through the body. Depending how much and how long the drug has been used determines the best course of treatment for a client(Inaba & Cohen, 2011). A person may need inpatient care in order to handle the withdrawal symptoms. Drug protocols are being researched, but none has been proven effective at this time. Pharmaceuticals have been combined with other treatments to lessen the symptoms that are the result of stopping Methamphertmine use. Most of the treatment consists of behavioral treatment programs.

Trends Critique

Cognitive Behavior Therapy is a form of talk therapy that is used to reframe and recondition the way an addict thinks about drug use (Baker & Lee, 2009). Cognitive Behavior Therapy teaches a meth addict ways to process information or stimuli similar to the 12 steps program, but the program is a more structured approach for the client(Masters, 2009). The therapy sessions usually consist of at least sixteen sessions. It assists the client in developing alternative thought patterns that replace the craving for the drug. This treatment protocol is easily adaptable to meet different cultural needs or bias.

Methamphetamine addicts often experience symptoms of paranoia, delusions, psychosis, and depression. These mental health issues often interfere with the client’s treatment process. Cognitive Behavior Therapy teaches the client to deals with these side effects by being able to process the information without feeling scared. During the sessions, the patient can liberate themselves from fear, desperation, and suicidal thoughts. It allows the client to build skills that will help them cope with these feelings and cravings for the drug (Baker & Lee, 2005).

In a study by Hawkins et.al, it was found the skills training was not as effective after six months, but some of the techniques remained. During the time, a person is involved in the treatment usage either stops or reduces significantly. It has also been used successfully in the inpatient setting. The use of this therapy does decrease the relapse rate. However, a study by Hawkins et.al, found that after 12 months, the skills were not remembered as well as at the time of discharge. However, some of the skills did remain and help to avoid a relapse. Therefore, using it as a single form of treatment might not be the best choice(Therci & Alexandar, 2006). It has worked well in combination with other treatment...

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