One of the first steps in recovery is the recognition and this responsibility falls squarely on the shoulder of the user; however for the future steps involved in rehabilitation it helps to have a drug abuse professional on hand for guidance. The best method of recovery should be individually assessed as this choice depends on the individual’s need, the expense of the program, and the program’s appeal to that particular person.
Whichever drug abuse professional the user decides to seek, the major components of any viable recovery include detoxification, support, and abstinence. If the user may encounter severe withdrawal symptoms, they may want to opt to see a drug abuse professional on an inpatient basis. This would include medical assistance coupled with a more controlled environment with their peers. An additional bonus of the inpatient drug abuse professional is that the user has access to not only drug abuse professionals, but generally has access to psychologists as well. This can aid in diagnosing a mood disorder (if there is one) as well as emotional support.
On an outpatient basis, there are 12-step programs available in all fifty states. Membership to these programs is free and the meetings are presided by drug abuse professionals. Unfortunately, the drawbacks to groups such as Alcoholics Anonymous (AA) or Narcotics Anonymous (NA) are Christian-based programs. These groups have an open door policy for atheists and those of other faiths, but it can still act as a turn-off for some.
For those who opt out of 12-step programs, but still wish to see a drug abuse professionals on an outpatient basis, there are newer groups such as SMART Recovery and LifeRing for support. These programs are not faith-based and their rules of recovery are far less strict than the 12-step programs.