In the throes of addiction, asking for help can seem like the last option. As struggles with substances consume daily life, recognizing the need for professional intervention often becomes an overwhelming challenge. However, asking for help signifies a pivotal moment of strength and resilience. The road to recovery can start with a visit to a behavioral health unit (BHU), where comprehensive care and support offer the means to overcome addiction.
When to go to a BHU
Identifying the right time to check into a BHU is a deeply personal decision, often prompted by noticeable signs of addiction’s toll. Symptoms can include a loss of control over substance abuse, experiencing withdrawal when attempting to quit, and having intense cravings that disrupt daily life. Other considerations, such as a home environment that isn’t conducive to recovery or a failure of outpatient treatment, can also necessitate treatment.
Loss of control
Substance use can begin as a voluntary choice, but with repeated exposure, the ability to exert self-control can become seriously impaired. A loss of control is largely due to how the substances affect the brain, particularly areas critical to judgment, decision-making, learning, and behavioral control. BHUs can provide the help needed to regain control, including cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) with professionals and detoxification.
Substance use alters the brain’s chemistry over time, with the brain becoming dependent on the substance to maintain a sense of normalcy. When decreasing or stopping substance use, the body can experience withdrawal symptoms, such as nausea, sweating, tremors, anxiety, depression, and irritability. BHUs employ professional medical staff to provide detoxification in a safe, controlled environment, easing withdrawal symptoms in the process.
Intense cravings don’t simply suggest a desire for a substance but are an overwhelming force that can disrupt thought processes, behavior, and emotional well-being. When the substance is no longer present, the brain demands the artificial sense of pleasure developed over time through continued substance use. BHUs provide tools and techniques to cope with substance cravings, including CBT and mindfulness techniques.
Failure of outpatient treatment
A more intensive approach to care may be necessary when outpatient treatment for addiction does not result in the desired progress. Outpatient treatment heavily relies on the individual’s ability to manage the recovery process in a less controlled environment, which can lead to relapse or escalating substance use. In such cases, BHUs may provide the necessary closed environment and resources for more successful outcomes.
Embracing the journey toward recovery
Seeking help for addiction is a courageous step forward on the path to recovery. While the journey may not be easy, taking the first step towards a BHU promises hope and healing. Checking into a behavioral health unit represents not just the end of a difficult chapter but the start of a new one filled with growth, learning, and transformation. With professional help and the right support system, overcoming addiction is possible.