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FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
Q: WHAT IS ALCOHOLISM OR ALCOHOL ADDICTION?
A: HERE IS WHAT WE BELIEVE. ALCOHOLISM IS A PREDICTABLE, PROGRESSIVE AND CHRONIC DISEASE. THOSE AFFLICTED WITH SUBSTANCE ABUSE STRUGGLE WITH THE INCESSANT NEED TO USE, EVEN IF IT IS NEGATIVELY AFFECTING THEIR LIVES.
ALCOHOL ADDICTION CAN DISMANTLE PEOPLE'S LIVES, IMPACTING RELATIONSHIPS, CAREERS, FINANCES AND MORE.
WITHOUT TREATMENT, AN ADDICTED PERSON WILL DETERIORATE AND EVENTUALLY WILL END UP INCARCERATED, INSANE OR DEAD.
Q: HOW WILL I KNOW IF ALCOHOL IS A PROBLEM IN MY LOVED ONE'S LIFE?
A: IF YOU CAN ANSWER YES TO ANY OF THESE QUESTIONS, YOUR LOVED ONE MAY BE STRUGGLING WITH ALCOHOL ADDICTION:
- CAN YOUR LOVED ONE STOP AFTER CONSUMING 1 OR 2 DRINKS?
- HAS HE OR SHE SUFFERED ANY CONSEQUENCES FROM DRINKING, SUCH AS JOB LOSS, DWI, OR BROKEN RELATIONSHIPS?
- DOES HE OR SHE DRINK IN SECRET AND ATTEMPT TO HIDE THE EVIDENCE?
- DOES HE OR SHE HAVE A HIGH TOLERANCE TO ALCOHOL?
Q: WHAT IS DRUG ADDICTION?
A: THE NATIONAL INSTITUTE ON DRUG ABUSE (NIDA) DEFINES DRUG ADDICTION AS A chronic, relapsing brain disease that is characterized by compulsive drug seeking and use, despite harmful consequences.
NIDA considers IT A brain disease because drugs alter the brain's structure and how it works. These alterations can be long lasting and can lead to many harmful, often self-destructive, behaviors.
Q: HOW WILL I KNOW IF DRUGS ARE A PROBLEM IN MY LOVED ONE'S LIFE?
A: If someone you love is addicted to drugs they could exhibit a few or all of the following signs and symptoms:*
- Cravings. People may experience intense urges or cravings for the drug as their addiction develops.
- Physical dependence. Physical dependence to drugs can develop as people grow accustomed to the persistent presence and influence of the substance. The changes in physiology that accompany this process leave people feeling badly or functioning sub-optimally when the drug is no longer in the system.
- Tolerance. Over time and with prolonged use, people can build up a tolerance to the drug, meaning they need more of the drug to achieve the desired effects.
- Withdrawal symptoms. Some people experience withdrawal symptoms when they attempt to stop using abruptly or when they wean themselves off the drug over a period of time. This is the presence of a withdrawal syndrome indicates that physiologic dependence is at play.
- Poor judgement. When an individual is addicted to drugs, he or she may do anything to obtain more, including risky behaviors such as stealing, lying, engaging in unsafe sexual activity, selling drugs, or crimes that could land the person in jail.
- Drug-seeking. People may spend excessive amounts of time and energy finding and getting their drug of choice.
- Financial trouble. People may spend large amounts of money, drain their bank accounts, and go outside their budgets in order to get the drug. This is a major red flag.
- Neglect responsibilities. When people choose using or getting the drug over meeting work or personal obligations, this is a classic sign of addiction.
- Develop unhealthy friendships. When people start using new substances, they may spend time with others who have similar habits. They may hang out with a new group of people who may encourage unhealthy habits.
- Isolate. Alternatively, they may withdraw and isolate themselves, hiding their drug use from friends and family. Some reasons for this may include perceived stigma or increased depression, anxiety, or paranoia as a result of their drug addiction.
Q: What is an eating disorder?
A: According to The Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders-V (DSM-V), Anorexia Nervosa, Bulimia Nervosa, Binge Eating Disorder, and Eating Disorder Not Otherwise Specified are all considered eating disorders.
Recognizing an eating disorder can be complicated. Research shows that up to half of all Americans show signs of disordered relationship to food. Symptoms of disordered eating can be food restriction, binge eating, and/or purging (via self-induced vomiting or excessive exercise, and use of diet pills and/ or laxatives).
Q: How will i know if someone i love has an eating disorder?
A: If someone you love exhibits one or more of these symptoms, you may want to reach out for help:
- Anxiety about specific foods or food groups
- Obsessive calorie counting
- A rigid approach to eating. Willingness to eat only specific foods. Lack of flexibility around meal times. Refusal to eat outside one's home.
- Excessive or rigid exercise regimen
- Distorted body image: 1) A person fails to see he/she is obese. 2) A person is within healthy weight range, but feels he/she is overweight. 3) A person is extremely thin, but continues to see him/herself as overweight.
- One's sense of self (self-esteem, self- worth) is based highly or even exclusively on body shape and weight.
Q: At what point should I seek help for my loved one?
A: If you recognize your loved one exhibiting any of the above symptoms for alcohol addiction, drug addiction, or an eating disorder, We at Whole Families Intervention and Holistic Recovery Services suggest reaching out to a professional interventionist. If you are still unsure, a certified recovery coach, therapist or physician who specializes in addiction can provide objectivity, clarity and encouragement in the situation and help to determine if a problem exists.
Q: WHAT IS AN INTERVENTION?
A: AN INTERVENTION IS AN INVITATION FOR A LOVED ONE TO SEEK AND ACCEPT THE NEXT STEP TOWARD THEIR RECOVERY FROM THE DISEASE OF ADDICTION. THE GOAL OF AN INTERVENTION IS TO BREAK THROUGH THE DENIAL BOTH IN YOUR LOVED ONE AND WITHIN THE FAMILY SYSTEM TO MOTIVATE THE WHOLE FAMILY TO GET HELP. WHEN EACH PERSON IS ABLE TO ACCEPT THE CIRCUMSTANCES AND THE REPERCUSSIONS OF ADDICTION, THE WHOLE FAMILY BEGINS TO SEE THEIR PART IN THE ADDICTION. THOSE INVOLVED WITH THE INTERVENTION EXPLORE TREATMENT OPTIONS WITHIN THE MEETING. WITH AGREEMENT FROM THE LOVED ONE, ARRANGEMENTS BEGIN FOR THE PERSON OF CONCERN TO ACCEPT THE TREATMENT OFFERED.
Q: What can I expect from an intervention?
A: An Intervention is designed to encourage the addicted person to take steps towards his/her recovery. We at Whole Families Intervention and Holistic Recovery Services design your intervention so that the addicted person receives compassion, lovingkindness and dignity.
Throughout the process, the whole family gains a better understanding of the disease of addiction. They begin to perceive the significance of the problem, identify supportive resources and a develop a course of treatment appropriate for both themselves and their loved one.
With Whole Families Intervention and Holistic Recovery Services, the whole family engages in the process of recovery. They begin to own their own journey toward health and wellness. They begin to embrace the truth that addiction is a family disease, its ramifications have far-reaching effects, and that for the addict to heal and recover, everyone needs to do the same.
Q: Is there anything I should not do when confronting a loved one?
A: We at Whole Families Intervention and Holistic Recovery Services believe that Blame, shame, threatening and demeaning are ineffective behavior. We are very intentional in your intervention to use a language the addicted person can understand. We use the language of love with compassion, dignity and accountability.
Q: Who are Interventionists and where do I find them?
A: PROFESSIonal Interventionists are skillfully trained to work with families and loved ones to intervene in the life of an addicted person.
They coordinate interventions with knowledge of the disease and the experience of working with others who have faced the same battle.
Interventionists provide guidance as neutral, unbiased mediators while empowering the family to intervene on the behalf of their loved one.
Q: Do I need an Interventionist?
A: If you decide you're ready to reach out for help on the behalf your addicted loved one, you may benefit from the support of an Interventionist.
Without proper assistance, an unmediated intervention can cause more harm than good to both the family and the addict.
The nature of addiction often brings about strong feelings and emotions surrounding both the addicted individual and the family.
The role of a professionally trained Interventionist is extremely important to ensure the meeting conveys compassion, lovingkindness and dignity.
The Interventionist can monitor the situation, arbitrate when necessary, and advise the whole family while also offering encouragement to everyone.
Q: Who’s involved in an intervention?
A: ANYONE WHO IS significant in the liFE of an addictED PERSON should be present for an intervention. THE INTERVENTION CAN INCLUDE family members, friends, coworkers, clergy, etc.
A professional Interventionist is vital in HELPING THE FAMILY determinE who should be involved in aN intervention. Anyone who is not in full support of A COMPASSIONATE intervention should NOT be present.
Q: Is an intervention always successful?
A: Regardless if the addictED PERSON gets help, the family has come together and witnessed the truth: 1) the family has experienced pain, loss, and despair. 2) in the midst of their challenges, the family has remained resilient, courageous, and strong. 3) The addiction is no longer a secret and the intervention can allow the family to engage in their own journey of recovery.