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Traditional and Contemporary Approaches to Substance Abuse, Essay Example

Pages: 1

Words: 348

Essay

Sharon, a 40-year old parolee who has just been released from prison for drug dealing, has come to live in the facility where this student works.  Sharon  has a substance abuse problem, but is now “ready to stay clean.”  If this means that Sharon realizes that she is an addict and is willing to say so, then she has taken the first—and essential– step towards staying clean.

Some people cannot turn their lives around until they have hit bottom, which Sharon has.  Furthermore, negative factors within a family have been associated with an increased risk of substance abuse (Substance Abuse, 2012); and Sharon carries many unresolved and painful issues.  To be sexually abused by an uncle at nine and to tell one’s mother and extended family about it only to be told to just to ignore him must have been devastating. To have one’s brother drop a football scholarship to come home to help and then end up in prison for assault and domestic abuse must be a heavy burden to carry.

Therefore, this student would arrange for Sharon to receive a mixture of Person-Centered Therapy and behaviour therapy, the former to give her an opportunity to discuss with an interested and helpful party the many negative situations of her life and the latter to reinforce her for each day of avoiding substance abuse and of taking positive steps toward a productive and satisfying life once discharged from the facility (Corey, 1991).  These approaches are important since Treatment Approaches for Drug Addiction (2009) believe that “addiction is a brain disease that affects multiple brain circuits, including those involved in rewards and motivation, learning and memory, and inhibitory control over behaviour.” Medical detoxification is a first step in the treatment process. Then, medications can be used to establish normal brain function.

 

References

Corey, G.  (1991). Theory and practice of counselling and psychotherapy.  Belmont: California:  Brooks/Cole Publishing Company.

InfoFacts:  Treatment Approaches for drug addiction (September 2009).  NIDA National Institute on Drug Abuse.  The science of drug abuse and addiction.  Retrieved on January 18, 2012, from http://www.drugabuse.gov.

Substance Abuse.  Emedicinehealth.com  Retrieved on January 18, 2012, from http://www.emedicinehealth.com.

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