How to Get Motivated for Change During Rehab

Posted in: Treatment

February 23, 2016

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Deciding to get professional help is one of the most important decisions a person struggling with a substance use problem can make. Substance rehabilitation programs offer the addict a safe and healthy environment where she is surrounded by healthcare professionals and can focus on learning how to avoid substance abuse in the future. But going through substance rehabilitation can be scary for many people, especially when they think about the physical, psychological and social changes they will experience both during and after treatment. It’s therefore helpful to prepare for these changes, and to embrace them as a necessary and healthy part of the recovery process.

Factors That Influence Motivation

It can take a lot for a person to get motivated to change her habits, especially if substance abuse is involved. SAMHSA’s Treatment Improvement Protocol No. 35 lists several factors that influence a person’s motivation, including:

  • Evaluating the substance abuse and its impact
  • Experiencing high levels of distress
  • Going through one or more critical life events
  • Receiving positive and negative external incentives
  • Recognizing the negative consequences of the substance abuse

When first entering drug treatment, many addicts feel motivated to change because they recognize the ways drugs and alcohol have destroyed their lives. While in rehab, addicts will learn how to maintain this motivation during the challenges of withdrawal and recovery.

Components of Effective Drug Rehabilitation

One way to maintain motivation during rehab is to know exactly what to expect. Although every treatment program is different, several factors come into play in quality treatment. The National Institute on Drug Abuse lists the following key components of effective drug treatment:

  • Individualization to each person
  • Easy access and ready availability
  • Addressing all aspects of the person, such as her physical, psychological, emotional and social needs
  • Adequate length of treatment
  • Counseling options
  • Medicinal therapy when needed
  • Continual assessment of treatment, and modification as needed
  • Preventing relapse as much as possible, and helping the person get back on track when it occurs

A person in drug rehabilitation will experience a lot of changes during and after the rehabilitation process, so she should prepare herself accordingly. One major change she might experience will occur if she has withdrawals whenever she stops using the substance. If this happens, her body will have to go through the physical changes that occur during detoxification. This process will allow her body to relearn how to function without the substance. Detoxification is often uncomfortable and can sometimes be painful, but it is ultimately necessary for the person to regain normal body functioning. The best way to prepare for detoxification is to understand its components and purpose. The person will then be more likely to have a positive detoxification experience.

She might also experience changes in her social life. She will likely have to discuss the addiction with her friends and family members, and apologize to those who were hurt by her behavior. If any of her loved ones engaged in the substance use with her, she may have to change her interactions with them so that she is not tempted to continue using the substance. Going to therapy and support groups can help a person prepare for these changes with her friends and family.

How to Find Out More about Motivation and Change During Drug Rehabilitation

In order to be completely successful, drug rehabilitation requires at least some level of self-motivation from the individual engaging in it. If you or someone you care about is struggling with substance abuse, please give us a call at 615-490-9376. Our admissions coordinators are available 24 hours a day to answer your questions about getting motivated for change during substance rehabilitation.

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