Methamphetamine is a highly addictive drug that has long been known for the devastating effects it can have on its users. Worse, those addicted to meth are also often addicted to other substances or suffer from mental illness. According to meth recovery statistics, between 60 and 80 percent of meth addicts also have a gambling or alcohol problem.
Thus, dealing with a meth addict family member can be stressful — even if they’re in recovery. Here is everything you need to know about how to deal with a meth addict family member.
1. Start a Conversation with Them About the Addiction
The first thing you can do when dealing with a meth addict family member is to have a conversation with them. It would help if you created an environment where they can be honest and open about the situation. They will require support and understanding from their family, so you must let them know they have your backing. You should also let them know what you’re willing to do to help them move forward in their recovery and other available resources if they need further help.
2. Get Them to Go to a Drug Addiction Treatment Center
A meth addict family member is too stubborn for their good. This can make it hard for them to get clean and stay sober. In this situation, you may need to intervene and force them into treatment. While this is generally frowned upon, it’s still the best way forward to help them stop taking the drug before making a complete mess of their lives mentally and physically.
Meth Addiction Treatment Options
Meth addiction treatment will vary depending on the health of the person who needs the treatment. If they have a secondary addiction, they will also have to attend rehab for that substance.
Outpatient Addiction Treatment: Those who need to attend drug treatment but are not willing to go into a full-blown inpatient rehab center can still receive outpatient treatment or partial-day rehab. They may be able to take the day off of work and attend treatment.
Inpatient Addiction Treatment: If the person needs meth addiction treatment for a prolonged period, they may need to be admitted into an inpatient rehab center. In this case, they will spend most of their time in rehab and have around-the-clock care from counselors and doctors.
3. Provide Them with Support
When dealing with a meth addict family member, it’s important to remember that recovery is long and difficult. Your family member may relapse multiple times over many years. Don’t let this discourage you or make you stop supporting them. It’s one of your main jobs to provide a safe environment for them, to be honest about their addiction, and to have a chance to be sober.
Also, could you encourage them to join meth support groups? The support they will receive from the people in these groups will be invaluable in their battle against meth addiction. When they share their experiences and recovery journey with other addicts, they feel less alone and like they’re not the only ones in the world with this problem.
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4. Speak to the Person About the Consequences
Depending on your relationship with a methamphetamine addict, you may need to speak to them about the consequences of continuing their methamphetamine use. This can include anything from intervention by family members or professional intervention.
Professional intervention with a person’s family can be good if they’re not ready to admit that they have a meth addiction or need professional help. It’s common for someone using meth to feel as though their family or friends are against them because of their drug use. If they have these feelings, family intervention can help them realize that their family cares about them and wants them to be sober.
5. Refer Them to Medical Professionals
You can refer them to doctors and psychologists in your area. They must see medical professionals regularly because sometimes people use meth to cope with mental health issues such as depression, anxiety, and bipolar disorder. They may also need to see a doctor for physical illnesses associated with meth use, such as lung cancer or heart disease.
6. Set Schedules and Boundaries
Meth addicts need structure in their life to avoid slipping back into their addiction or relapsing. If you’re living with them and they have a full-time job, think of how you can make schedules and boundaries they need to follow to stay sober. Be sure to let them know that you will not tolerate bad behavior from them. Don’t ignore if they are late for work or not doing their homework. Make them understand that they will not be able to continue drug use if they want to stay sober.
7. Help Them Find an Aftercare Program
After their meth addiction treatment program ends, you should help your family member find a good aftercare program. This will help them transition back into daily life and make it easier for them to stay sober. It can also provide them with continuing support if they relapse, likely for someone in early recovery.
Stages of Meth Recovery
The first stage of the meth recovery process is detoxing. This is when the person stops using meth and gets their body used to being without the drug. It can be very difficult, as withdrawal symptoms may include uncontrollable shaking, depression, and anxiety. This stage may last for around two weeks.
The second stage is the honeymoon stage when the addict begins to recover. The third stage is the wall where the addict is likely to relapse. The fourth stage of recovery is the adjustment stage, where the addict feels optimistic and accomplished. And the final stage is the resolution stage, where the addict gets sober.
Contact the Professionals for Help
If you suspect your family member is addicted to meth, consider contacting the professionals who help people recover from meth addiction. They can help you make a plan of action and come up with suggestions based on their experience dealing with different types of meth addiction.