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Anxiety & Substance Abuse

Tuesday, April 30, 2019 | By

anxiety and substance abuse rehab

Table Of Contents

Some anxiety comes naturally for everyone – awaiting test results, working against an impending deadline, or expecting to hear bad news. For most of us, this feeling dissipates when the moments pass and life goes on. People suffering from anxiety disorder, however, are trapped in paroxysms of anxious thoughts, feelings, and behaviors against their will. Thankfully, anxiety treatment is available and can help those who suffer to achieve balanced, healthy lives.

Anxiety Disorders and Addiction

Many times, patients with anxiety disorder do not realize that what they have is not a simple phase but a much larger concern. For this reason, they often attempt to self-medicate by abusing drugs or alcohol in an attempt to control their nervous reactions and calm their anxious thoughts. Unfortunately, while this can provide temporary relief, it does not address the underlying causes of the anxiety disorder, and instead can contribute to an addiction to the substance the patient hAnxiety disorder leading to substance abuseas been abusing.

In other cases, there are no anxiety disorder-related symptoms before the substance abuse. Either as a direct result of the drugs or alcohol, or due to withdrawal attempts as a result of an attempted self-detoxification or lack of intake, the patient develops anxiety in the absence of their drug of choice.

Treating anxiety disorder that presents with substance abuse involves taking care of both issues simultaneously. The process of weaning a user off their drug or alcohol addiction is known as detoxification, and it should only be attempted under the supervision of medical professionals.

Detoxing often causes anxiety as a result of the patient’s body and mind struggling to adapt without the illicit substances on which they had been hooked for a long period of time. Treating medical professionals will decide if their case is severe enough to prescribe medication. Commonly prescribed anti-anxiety medications are known as selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors, which work by preventing the reabsorption of serotonin in the brain, leaving more serotonin and leading to a better mood. Such drugs in this category include fluoxetine (trade name Prozac), paroxetine (Paxil), escitalopram (Lexapro), and fluvoxamine (Luvox).

When detoxification is complete and the patient is no longer dependent on controlled substances to try and cope with their disorder, therapy should commence. Therapy can involve such treatment approaches as cognitive behavioral therapy, which works by helping the patient learn how their negative thoughts and behaviors contribute to their problems, and then teaches them how they can replace their negative thoughts with realistic thoughts that do not lead to intrusive and unhealthy behaviors.

Another form of therapy is exposure therapy. With this therapy, the patient is gradually and carefully exposed to the situations that would trigger an anxiety attack. With the supervision of a therapist, the patient is shown that the situations do not cause actual harm, and the lessons from the experience are adapted to the anxiety disorder at large.

Anxiety disorder can be unpleasant and debilitating, but it does not have to be a way of life. Treatment to help you, or a loved one, get control of your anxious thoughts and feelings is available. We here at Circle of Hope want to help you get started. Please give us a call and ask us about our anxiety treatment options.

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  • I'm from the suburbs of Chicago and have been in quite a few treatment centers. Circle of Hope is hands down the best and most comfortable rehab I have ever been in. Not to mention how caring and helpful all the staff are. The door to my counselors office was always open when ever you needed to talk. Everyone genuinely cares there and that’s what made it a special place for me. My four boys are going to get back their Sober and clean Dad back thanks to the help from Circle of Hope.

    Jeremy G.

  • Circle of hope changed my life!! Great food, great staff, wonderful place! Awesome to get to know the amazing clients and see that i was not alone in my recovery. I made friends for life in the short time i got to spend there. Not a better facility anywhere in my opinion!!The team of employees, from the Technicians all the way up to the Owner, all have a patient first mentality.

    Leto M

  • Going to treatment at circle of hope was one of the best programs Ive participated in, they helped me get my life back. They have amazing staff and over all good natured people. They focus on all aspects of counseling , case management, meetings, different types of therapy, including trauma, one on one counseling. This is coming from someone who has been traumatized and neglected. They helped me get to the root of the problem. Which most times can feel very uncomfortable but they provide groups that you participate in and communicate to other addicts and hear their life stories. They really are an organization of team working to help heal the conflicted minds of us addicts that we faced everyday. I would highly recommend this treatment program to anyone suffering from substance abuse or mental health.

    Skyy S

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