Whether an escalating addition is chemical or behavioral, when family and friends of an addict realize the addictive behavior is out of control and need to make a convincing case that treatment is necessary, many turn to holding an intervention. An intervention involves a group of caring individuals discussing their observations in a non-accusatory way with their loved one.
The first thing to remember about interventions is that it is best to consult and work with a trained addiction counselor before meeting with the addict. Certain techniques produce the best effects, while others must be avoided because they are either detrimental to the efforts to help or psychologically harmful to the patient.
It is important to express love and support, while making it clear that the addiction, not the person, is the problem. Often, the counselor will be affiliated with a treatment center or program and will be prepared to enroll the addicted individual as soon as they consent. It is important to begin treatment right away, avoiding the possibility of the patient changing his or her mind or engaging in further addictive behaviors.
About the Author: Specializing in addition psychiatry and treatment, Alan Fisch, MD, has improved patients’ lives for more than 40 years. Founding several facilities across Massachusetts, Dr. Alan Fisch is now the Director of Psychiatry for Addiction Medicine Associates in Brookline, Massachusetts.