Drug and Alcohol Addiction in Hertfordshire and Bedfordshire: Where to Get Help in Bedford, Luton and Watford
Drug and alcohol abuse not only harms the individual suffering from addiction, but it also affects the people around them. It’s not just the friends and family, who may experience a lot of emotional and psychological distress from the effects of their loved one’s addiction, but the entire community as well. Various treatment options are available throughout most cities and towns of Hertfordshire, Bedfordshire, Bedford, Luton and Watford.
As access to and demand for illicit drugs increases, those who operate these black markets grow, and gang-related violence rises as well. According to a report by the ONS, Instances of violent crime have become more commonplace in both Bedfordshire and Hertfordshire, and professionals believe that the growth of drug gangs are a major contributing factor.
Recovery is not easy, but the benefits of being abstinent from drugs and/or alcohol become quickly evident after entering a period of sobriety. By addressing your addiction, you are not only helping yourself, but your loved ones, and your community as well in the long run.
When should I seek help?
If you find yourself questioning your behaviour, you may want to check if you have any of the common signs of addiction. If you exhibit any of the symptoms of addiction, it may be wise to talk to a professional, such as your GP or a therapist, for a proper assessment.
Signs of addiction vary by the substance and/or behaviour. Although drugs or alcohol is the first to come to mind when one thinks of addictions, it is possible to have a behavioural addiction, also known as a process addiction, as well.
Some common signs of addiction is preoccupation with a substance or activity, especially if it starts to take precedence over other aspects of your life, such as school, work, social life. Cravings for a substance or activity should be concerning as well. Another warning sign is emotional swings when one doesn’t have access to their substance or activity. Both cravings and emotional changes may lead one to go to extreme efforts to obtain the drug or alcohol, or perform the activity.
If you notice any of these symptoms in someone you care about, it may be a good idea to talk to them or have an intervention. Many people affected by addiction are in denial, so they may not react positively when confronted.
Is inpatient or outpatient treatment better, and should I seek treatment close to home?
The route one chooses for treatment varies from person to person, and from one addiction to another. Some people may do well with outpatient therapy, while other need the closer supervision and attention of residential, inpatient programme.
Outpatient simply means that the person in treatment continues to live at home and go about their job, school or lifestyle, and attends therapy or meetings regularly. Inpatient is most commonly associated with a residential rehab, where a person relocates to a new location for a period of four-to-six weeks.
Based on the subject and severity of the addiction, the recommended treatment programme may differ. For example, someone with severe alcoholism or long-term heroin abuse will likely need a detox period under medical supervision.
If one chooses to go the residential-rehab route, choosing a place close to home or somewhere far away is entirely up to personal preference. Some people feel they need to be close to their family and those who support then, while others require a complete escape from their everyday environment.
Many people from all over the world come to Castle Craig Hospital, which is located in a tranquil and semi-remote area of Scotland, for that reason.
Where can I get more information about addiction in my area?
Talking to your GP can be a good first step, as it looking up “addiction”, “alcohol”, “therapy”, or “drugs” in the NHS directory for more relevant resources.
Most cities in Hertfordshire and Bedfordshire have specialists, centres or charities that specialise in addiction or substance misuse.
Resolutions provides support for adult and young residents of Luton, and their friends, carers and family members too. They offer harm-reduction services as well.
Path to Recovery (P2R) in Bedford also helps those suffering from addiction and those affected by someone with an addiction.