Drug addiction is a relapsing brain disorder that causes one to compulsively seek out and use drugs. This compulsion is strong, despite how harmful the consequences may be to the addict or others around them. Addiction can cause changes in the structure and function of your brain. In India, the use of illegal drugs is rising. The most common drugs used in India include heroin, opium, cannabis and hashish according to alcoholrehab. Methamphetamine is also rising in the market. The current reported numbers of drug addicts is over 3 million people, in India.

Drug Addiction Therapy

Treating drug addicts in India is difficult for families, communities and law enforcement officials. The troubling truth is that the addicts we are referring to, are not of an elite class but instead come from a poor background with low levels of education and lack of financial means to support themselves. Children as young as the age of 13 have access to drugs and face addiction problems. The financial costs of treatment are borne by the families. It is difficult, however, to find available and appropriate care services. De-addiction centres (or rehab) apply the same principles of drug treatment as seen in America.

Effectiveness of Tough Treatment

Maia Szalavitz, a journalist that writes in her book, Unbroken Brain, about how the 12-step program, interventions and tough love can actually be counterproductive, while treating drug addiction.

“We have this idea that if we are just cruel enough and mean enough and tough enough to people with addiction, that they will suddenly wake up and stop, and that is not the case,”

Maia Szalavitz, journalist and author of Unbroken Brain

The problem with the the 12-step program is that it treats addiction like a sin rather than a mental health disorder. She says that harm reduction programs help people in the de-addiction centres feel like human beings. They have hope that these individuals can themselves make a change and become clean. She promotes therapies like cognitive behavioural therapy and motivational enhancement therapy as equally effective methods to solve addiction. The key to take away from this is that to get through addiction, the individual needs a lot of support and motivation from their loved ones. Just locking them up and draining out the drugs from their system is not enough in solving the bigger problem.

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