The dangers of stimulants are growing with each year, increasing the need for stimulant addiction treatment options. Prescription medication abuse and cocaine use have become more popular, and stimulant use trends have paralleled deaths with other substances. Stimulants are a Schedule II controlled substance by the DEA and there are no approved medications for stimulant withdrawals.

So, what is a stimulant drug? A stimulant can directly affect your central nervous system through symptoms that increase alertness and clarity. Stimulants are commonly misused by students and athletes. The euphoric effects of stimulants include loss of appetite and wakefulness for extended periods.

Stimulants include:

  • Methamphetamines
  • Amphetamines
  • Cocaine
  • Methylphenidate
  • Caffeine

Side effects of stimulant use can result in:

  • Increased alertness and energy
  • Irritability or mood swings
  • Delusions and hallucinations
  • Sudden changes in heart rate and blood pressure
  • Depression and anxiety
  • Rambling speech
  • Increased risk-taking behavior
  • Nausea
  • Loss of appetite

What Is a Stimulant Addiction?

A stimulant addiction can be characterized by an uncontrollable urge to use a stimulant, despite the negative effects. Stimulants manipulate the reward centers of the brain by increasing the production of dopamine and norepinephrine. These are recognized as the pleasure hormones, which are critical to survival. 

The repeated behaviors to maintain the normal levels of dopamine cause dependence. The dangers of stimulants erode the lives of the user, causing withdrawal symptoms. Stimulants are often used in polydrug use. Mixing cocaine with alcohol or mixing cocaine with heroin (called a “speedball”) can pose lethal consequences. 

Long-term stimulant use can present drastic effects on the brain and cardiovascular system. Depending on the method of use, the dangers of stimulants can affect the nasal cavity and blood vessels.  Behavioral therapies are the best line of defense with stimulant addiction treatment.

What Are the Signs of Stimulant Addiction?

The potency, amount, and length of substance use will factor into your addiction. Stimulants can be snorted, injected, or smoked. The method of use indicates whether someone is addicted, particularly with prescription medications. Taking stimulants orally is the slowest acting way of releasing them into the body. 

Signs of a stimulant addiction may include some of the following:

  • Increased self-confidence
  • Decline in personal hygiene
  • Disturbance of sleeping patterns, insomnia
  • Spending time recovering from stimulant use
  • Sudden weight loss or change in eating habits
  • Increased difficulty at work and school
  • Increased difficulty concentrating
  • Financial problems
  • Dilated pupils
  • Isolation

How to Stage a Stimulant Addiction Intervention

finding addiction support for familiesStaging an intervention will require a strong support system and plan of action. The intervention process can be uncomfortable, especially when watching a loved one endure so much. Seek help from a professional interventionist or counselor to provide you with more details. There is a chance the subject will deny their substance use.

Have a plan for the person to receive treatment for stimulant addiction. It’s best to stage the intervention in a neutral setting, with friends or close co-workers. It could help to do research with them or offer to transport them to support group meetings. The severity of their addiction will dictate the stage of care they need. Practice what you are going to say to the person struggling with stimulant addiction.

It’s recommended that you approach the person with facts about their substance use. Educating yourself about the specifics of addiction will only improve your chances of reaching them. Remind them that you’re only there for support through this difficult time. They will eventually have to recognize the depths of their substance use disorder.

Encourage them to see treatment as an opportunity to grow and learn from their substance use disorder. The language used to incorporate addiction can be jarring and inspire shameful feelings in the person. Remember to use “I” statements to express how their substance use has affected you and their relationship.

Resentment and hurtful expressions may come into play. Recognize that these interactions only promote more conflict. Seeking treatment for substance use requires a handful of courage and some people are not ready to take that step. If the person refuses, you have an opportunity to regroup for another intervention.

Stimulant Addiction Treatment in Northern Illinois

The continuum of care was created to provide the utmost care for all patients. It’s been reported that people who remain involved in the continuum of care have increased chances of recovery. 

Addiction has no cure but relies on your ability to look within to develop strength. Accessibility is a key point for those seeking addiction treatment. Escaping the societal pressures and stigmas of addiction treatment can liberate you from these coping mechanisms.

To manage the withdrawal symptoms, a detox will be required. Detoxification is the method of removing toxic substances from the body to nourish treatment. Detox is the first stage of addiction recovery, setting the foundation for your progress. The side effects of stimulants can leave your body without vital nutrients and minerals.

Detoxification Program for Stimulant Addiction

Individuals who are beginning the journey through recovery may not know exactly where to start at first. But, here at Northern Illinois Recovery Center, we offer our patients the ability to safely and comfortably end substance use. Our detox program can help individuals begin working toward total freedom and abstinence from alcohol and drugs.

Ending substance use often comes with serious and numerous challenges. Withdrawal symptoms can be moderate to severe. In many cases, the discomfort of withdrawal is enough to cause individuals to relapse and return to alcohol or drug use. In an effort to ease the pain or avoid the discomfort, people find themselves back in an unhealthy cycle of addiction. Thankfully, however, a professional detox program can help prevent this from happening. 

While going through the detoxification process, our patients have the advantage of receiving medical attention. As they withdraw from drug or alcohol use, individuals can rely on the expertise and professionalism of our addiction treatment specialists. The detox process is rarely easy, but it is usually one of the most helpful ways to begin the recovery process.

Once detox is complete, recovering individuals can expect to be physically free from substance abuse. Still, it is important for them to become emotionally and mentally free from substance use behaviors and patterns. This is where addiction treatment programs, such as residential and outpatient programs, come into play.

Inpatient Stimulant Addiction Treatment Program

An inpatient treatment program is designed to provide a trigger-free environment for the patient to recover. Inpatient treatment programs are suited for moderate to severe cases of addiction. 24/7 care is provided by trained medical staff to evaluate your progress. 

Inpatient treatment programs are intensive, providing psychotherapy and wellness therapies to condition the body without substances. This can be a discomforting process for some, especially without a support system. The average length of stay at an inpatient residence is 30 days, although 90 days is recommended in some cases.

Outpatient Stimulant Addiction Treatment

Outpatient treatment programs are an alternative to inpatient treatment programs. Although less intensive, outpatient treatment programs are vital tools for addiction recovery services. The average length of stay at an outpatient residence is 30 days, but it depends on your case. 

Outpatient treatment programs are best suited for those who do not have a support system to care for them during this period. Outpatient programs are a way to stay connected to your close ones and receive treatment. For instance, parents with a substance use disorder may fear losing their children due to the time spent in treatment. Outpatient treatment programs offer psychotherapy among other amenities to guide you. 

Intensive Outpatient Treatment Programs (IOPs) are more structured than outpatient treatment. For those with moderate cases of substance use, IOPs can help you stay on a straighter path with careful examination. The sessions in an IOP are carried out on a five-day basis for six to eight hours.

Partial Hospitalization Program

Partial hospitalizations are also known as “day programs”. Partial hospitalization programs introduce a patient to quality care comparable to an inpatient residence. The patient will attend structured treatment sessions between six and eight hours. Partial hospitalization has been used to treat individuals with mental health disorders.

Medication-Assisted Treatment

Withdrawal symptoms can be exhausting on the body. In moderate to severe cases of addiction, medication-assisted treatment can be administered to alleviate the symptoms. Individuals with a pre-existing condition can receive medication while they are in treatment. Pregnancy and allergic reactions must be evaluated by the staff to prevent long-term effects.

You’re Destined to Heal at Northern Illinois Recovery Center

The path toward healing requires motivation and support from all ends. You may be feeling anxious about receiving treatment for the first time. Stimulant addiction treatment can be a rewarding journey and can offer lasting support.

If you or a loved one are struggling with a substance use disorder, contact us today. We are here to help you find total freedom from addiction. Our mission is to assist you in the recovery process and walk with you every step of the way. Reach out to us to begin pursuing an addiction-free life.