Drug and alcohol addiction is a widespread problem. In the United States alone, an estimated 21 to 29 million people suffer from substance abuse disorders. These disorders can lead to mental health problems such as depression and anxiety. To combat these issues, researchers have been working on new ways of treating drug and alcohol addiction with psychotherapy techniques called Eye Movement Desensitization Reprocessing (EMDR).
In this post I will talk about what EMDR therapy is, how it works, its effectiveness in treating drug and alcohol addictions compared to traditional therapies, who should use EMDR therapy for their addiction treatment needs, how much does it cost? And some frequently asked questions about the process.
What is drug addiction?
Drug addiction is a chronic health condition in which a person makes use of drugs compulsively, persists in its usage despite complications, and continues to crave the drug.
What is alcohol addiction?
Alcohol addiction or alcoholism is the continued use of alcohol despite consistent negative consequences. Alcoholics cannot control their behavior because they are dependent on mood-altering substances to cope with stressors in their lives.
Mental illness or dependence to a certain substance could be a result of our personal life experiences. Positive or negative, life experiences have a significant impact on our thoughts, beliefs, and behavior. Negative life experiences such as abuse, neglect, violence, or emotional distress can have serious consequences in later life.
We recommend that people who are struggling with these problems see a psychiatrist or a psychologist. And take a step in order to continue their lives stronger by receiving effective psychotherapy help. Psychiatric medicines that have developed in recent years will also help the treatment to give good results.
Although it is a very broad concept, it is an inevitable desire for an object, person, or entity with its general definition. In other words, it can be defined as the state of entering under another will or motive. The most common examples of addiction that cause the most harm to the individual and their family are drugs and alcohol.
Substance and alcohol dependence often emerges as a defense mechanism developed to reduce anxiety. Especially traumas experienced during childhood and adulthood facilitate the use of addictive substances and give the idea to the individual that they can cope with life in this way. The substance used as the solution of the problems, the person gets away from appropriate thinking, hearing, and behaving.
EMDR and Addiction Therapy
Addiction treatment is difficult because symptoms such as withdrawal and substance use are high in recurrence rates. This is a wrong idea. The most important factor affecting the success of treatment is the willingness and determination of the person. At the same time, the impact of family support on the process is of great importance. Recently, increasing interest in EMDR psychotherapy has brought to mind the question of whether the effect of EMDR on addiction will be effective.
Since trauma plays a central role in dependence, EMDR psychotherapy may be effective in the treatment of addiction. Studies have shown that most people with fixation problems are victims of trauma. This makes us think that addiction and trauma are somehow related. Since individuals generally want to forget the pain of trauma, they turn to substance and alcohol use.
Addiction may occur as a direct result of an early trauma, or trauma may occur due to addiction. In both cases, it is important to recognize that trauma and fixation are co-occurring cases.
When using EMDR psychotherapy to alleviate trauma and addiction, psychiatrists and psychologists help each individual to reduce the need for dependence on the individual’s meaning processes and more appropriately to the root causes of trauma.
Today, EMDR psychotherapy is frequently used in many rehabilitation centers in addition to cognitive behavioral psychotherapy (CBT) techniques. Depending on the client’s treatment plan and the rehabilitation center providing the treatment, EMDR psychotherapy can be used in both individual and group therapy.
EMDR provides a number of advantages for patients in drug and alcohol rehabilitation:
- Alleviating the psychological consequences of trauma and PTSD.
- Reducing the physical symptoms of trauma and PTSD.
- Reducing or eliminating distress caused by disturbing moment (s).
- Increasing self-esteem and self-efficacy.
- Analyzing current and expected future triggers.
By using EMDR and other psychotherapies together, the individual can overcome traumatic experiences and completely avoid the devastating effects of negative life experiences and addiction.
Last Updated on December 3, 2021 by William Lindberg