Behavioral Therapy for Heroin Addiction
The long-term physical effects of heroin addiction can make ongoing abstinence difficult to maintain. The same can be said for the psychological and behavior effects of heroin abuse.
As a general rule, the farther into the recovery process a person gets, the more pronounced the psychological effects become. Just when you think you’ve overcome the worse of what recovery has to offer, the mental, emotional and behavioral drivers of heroin addiction take hold.
Heroin addiction leaves behind a lifestyle of its own that lives in the mind, even after a person stops using the drug. For these reasons, behavioral therapy for heroin addiction plays a critical role in helping a person maintain abstinence on an ongoing basis. Behavioral therapy treats the underlying issues that perpetuate compulsive drug-using behaviors, which is where heroin addiction lives.
The Effects of Heroin Addiction on Behavior
According to California State University-Northridge, the compulsive drug-using behaviors that come with heroin addiction have a tremendous impact on a person’s thinking patterns, emotions and overall lifestyle.
While the “high” experience no doubt acts as a primary motivation for continued drug use, the pattern of behavior that develops as a result takes on a life of its own inside the mind of the user.
These mental/behavioral effects persist long after a person stops using heroin, and ultimately become the greatest obstacles to continued abstinence for months and even years to come. Behavioral therapy for heroin addiction enables recovering addicts to develop a drug-free lifestyle in the place of destructive addiction-based thinking and behavior.
Call our helpline at 800-683-3270 (Who Answers?) to see if your insurance will help pay your rehab costs.
Types of Behavioral Therapy Used in Heroin Addiction Treatment
Cognitive Behavioral Therapy
Cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) for heroin addiction deals directly with the faulty thinking patterns that heroin addiction breeds, according to the American Journal of Psychiatry.
During the course of treatment, a person learns how to identify faulty patterns of thinking and the resulting emotions in terms of how they promote drug-using behaviors. Cognitive behavioral therapy also equips a person with healthy coping strategies for dealing with drug-using urges.
Contingency management for heroin addiction uses a type of positive reinforcement approach by rewarding a person with incentives and rewards for continued abstinence. This therapy approach follows a pre-determined treatment plan that lists specific objectives and goals.
Whenever a set objective or goal is met, the behavior is reinforced. Over time, positive reinforcements work to retrain the brain’s reward system to associate pleasure and contentment with positive behaviors instead of drug-using activities.
Couples & Family Therapy
Heroin addiction not only impacts the addict’s life, but also affects those closest to him or her. Within the context of a family or a couple, destructive relationship patterns can develop and greatly hamper the addict’s recovery efforts when left unaddressed.
Couples and family therapy for heroin addiction works to identify destructive communication patterns between partners and/or family members while helping participants develop healthy, nurturing relationships. These efforts go a long way towards helping a recovering addict follow through on behavioral treatment objectives.
If you or someone you know are considering behavioral therapy for heroin addiction and need help finding treatment services that meet your specific needs, please feel free to call our toll-free helpline at 800-683-3270 (Who Answers?) to speak with one of our addictions specialists.