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Drug & Alcohol Rehab in St Helens

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    Drug & Alcohol Rehab in St Helens

    Drug and alcohol addiction, otherwise known as substance use disorder or substance addiction, is a debilitating disease of chronic brain relapsing.

    Rather than just being unable to refrain from consuming a desirable substance, the addicted person suffers from a range of alterations in the neural pathways which lead to potentially severe physical and psychological changes.

    Addiction is not a lifestyle or simply a habit (although particular lifestyle habits can expose someone to addiction), but rather a neurological disease.

    Someone who is suffering from addiction is suffering from an illness which completely changes their physical and psychological functions.

    Basically, someone who is suffering from a substance addiction will experience a range of health complications due to their dependence on addictive substances.

    For more information about drug and alcohol rehab in St Helens, please contact us today on 0800 088 66 86.

    Physiological Changes Due to Drug & Alcohol Addiction

    Mental health

    When someone is unfortunate enough to suffer from a substance addiction, they will experience a dramatic change in their physiology and also their brain structures.

    In our brains are neural pathways, and among them are what are called ‘mesolimbic pathways’ or the ‘reward pathways’.

    These pathways are dopaminergic, which means that they release dopamine (the feel-good hormones) in order to incite feelings of euphoria within people.

    People who are addicted can reward pathways which are altered in a way in which they are unable to release dopamine naturally when performing other activities such as exercise, sexual intercourse, socialising, and so on.

    So, they must consume drugs or alcohol to experience this dopamine release.

    However, this means that the more drugs and alcohol they consume, the more difficult it becomes to experience natural dopamine releases.

    This makes people more dependent on addictive substances, as they may experience symptoms of anxiety and depression when they are not consuming their addictive substances.

    Additionally, suffering from an addiction may have people craving their substances through a range of physical withdrawal symptoms.

    Physical & Psychological Symptoms of Drug & Alcohol Addiction

    Because of the physiological changes which people undergo when they are suffering from a drug or alcohol addiction, they will experience a range of physical and psychological health complications.

    Many different factors will influence the severity and the forms of these withdrawal symptoms.

    Some substances, such as heroin, for example, will predominantly present a range of physical withdrawal symptoms, whereas cannabis may predominantly present psychological symptoms.

    Alcohol, on the other hand, can present a range of physical and psychological health dependencies.

    Other factors will determine what kind of symptoms an addicted person suffers from. If someone is already suffering from mental health issues, such as anxiety or depression, these conditions are bound to be enhanced by the effects of drug and alcohol addiction.

    This is also the case for someone who may be suffering from physical health issues.

    Some of the psychological symptoms associated with drug and alcohol addiction include but are not limited to:

    • Anxiety: Many people turn towards drugs and alcohol to mask their feelings of anxiety. While it may temporarily relieve these symptoms, addiction can make symptoms of anxiety much worse in the long term. Anxiety and feelings of intense worry and uncertainty in low-stakes situations can be exacerbated significantly if someone is suffering from a drug or alcohol addiction, especially during the withdrawal stages.
    • Depression: Similar to anxiety, many people who develop an addiction do so because they turn towards drugs and alcohol to overcome symptoms of depression. Symptoms of depression include intensely low moods and sadness, hopelessness, suicidal ideation, and more. After the euphoria associated with drugs and alcohol wears off, addicted people will find that their symptoms of depression are amplified greatly.
    • Delirium, Hallucinations, & Psychosis: Excessive consumption of drugs and alcohol can intensify existing symptoms of delirium, hallucinations, psychosis and other forms of altered states of reality for people. Frequently and excessively consuming drugs and alcohol can lead to the development of mental health issues such as schizophrenia and may even lead to irreversible damage.

    There is also a range of physical health complications which can arise due to drug and alcohol addiction. Some of these include but are not limited to:

    • Cancer: Drugs and alcohol are both considered to be carcinogens. This means that they increase the likelihood of their consumers developing cancer. Some of the most common forms of cancers associated with drug and alcohol addiction include lung cancer, throat cancer, rectal cancer, liver cancer, breast cancer, and much more.
    • Disease: Not only can they lead to a wide range of cancers, drug and alcohol addiction can lead to various forms of diseases. One of the most common diseases among drinkers in particular is Alcoholic Liver Disease. Not only are some diseases common among people who are addicted to alcohol, but it is also prevalent among even moderate drinkers.
    • Heart attack and stroke: Drugs and alcohol can have a wide range of effects on cardiovascular health. Alcohol consumption decreases heart rates, whereas some drugs such as cannabis, cocaine or heroin increase heart rates. Frequent and excessive consumption can lead to a range of problems due to the body and mind receiving mixed signals. Common problems include high blood pressure, cardiac arrest, heart attack, stroke, and so on.

    For more information about drug and alcohol rehab in St Helens, please contact us today on 0800 088 66 86.

    Addiction in St Helens & the United Kingdom

    Man drinking

    Drug and alcohol addiction is a prevalent problem not only in St Helens but across the United Kingdom. From 2020 to 2021, it was estimated that over a quarter of a million adults came into contact with addiction treatment centres.

    Of this figure, around 50% proceeded to undergo addiction treatment. Furthermore, it was estimated that 1 in 11 adults from 16 to 59 years old, and 1 in 5 adults aged 16 to 24, had consumed illicit drugs in the United Kingdom.

    However, St Helens and the rest of Merseyside in particular struggle with substance addiction.

    Statistics from the Office for National Statistics placed St Helens as one of the worst areas for drug hospitalisations in the country. St Helens sees around 230 hospitalisations due to drug consumption per 100,000 people aged 15 to 24.

    Who is at Risk of Developing a Drug & Alcohol Addiction?

    There are many different factors which can put someone at risk of developing a drug or alcohol addiction. Not everyone is the same, and this is especially the case when it comes to each case of addiction.

    Addiction does not just form when someone consistently drinks or consumes drugs, there are many different factors which may make someone much more likely and susceptible to developing a dependence.

    Some of these factors include:

    • Genes and biology: Addiction can be hereditary. Depending on the person’s family history, they may be more exposed to the effects of addiction. Some conditions such as Neonatal Abstinence Syndrome, are when a foetus is already experiencing symptoms of addiction in the womb because of their mother’s drug or alcohol consumption. While a person’s family history does not condemn them to develop an addiction, the American Psychological Association claims that around 60% of addiction cases.
    • Environmental factors: It is very important to consider what kind of environment the person was brought up in. Not only does the family’s history of addiction matter, but it matters what behavioural patterns they exhibited in this living environment. If a child was exposed to emotional problems due to violence or toxic relationships within the household, they may be more likely to develop cognitive, emotional, or behavioural issues which lead to substance use disorder.
    • Mental health complications: It is estimated that around 60% of those who are suffering from a drug or alcohol addiction are also suffering from mental health conditions such as depression, anxiety disorder, bipolar disorder, schizophrenia, trauma, and so on. This makes them much more likely to develop an addiction, because the symptoms they are experiencing may be temporarily relieved through drug and alcohol consumption. However, it will amplify symptoms in the long run.

    For more information about drug and alcohol rehab in St Helens, please contact us today on 0800 088 66 86.

    Health Assessment & Admissions Process for Rehab in St Helens

    At home support

    In order to undergo a comprehensive and effective rehabilitation plan at a drug and alcohol rehab in St Helens, patients will first need to undergo a health assessment and admissions process.

    This is vital for the process because addiction specialists need to understand the different aspects of their addiction such as substance use, medical history, physical and mental health, and so on before they undergo treatment at rehab.

    A “one size fits all” approach towards addiction recovery will be detrimental for many patients who require unique attention and treatment.

    People who want to undergo addiction treatment can initiate the process and begin their recovery journey can call Rehab Recovery by dialling the number 0800 088 66 86 if they are from the United Kingdom, or +44 330 333 6197 internationally.

    When they call this number, they will be free to ask questions to a friendly and experienced member of staff at Rehab Recovery.

    If they are comfortable enough to do so, and only when they are comfortable enough will we proceed, we can help the patient initiate the admissions process by undergoing a health assessment.

    This health assessment, while it may sound formal or intense, is incredibly simple and will take place casually over the phone, free of charge.

    The health assessment merely consists of a set of questions regarding the potential patient’s physical and mental health, their addiction and medical history, and so on.

    These details will help us understand what kind of care you require, whether you require inpatient or outpatient treatment, and which drug and alcohol treatment centres are optimal for your recovery.

    Therapy at a Drug & Alcohol Rehab in St Helens


    Because there are so many different factors which can influence someone’s drug and alcohol addiction, patients will require an array of therapy options in order to effectively overcome their condition.

    Some of the most commonly used forms of therapy at a drug and alcohol rehab in St Helens include but are not limited to:

    • Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT): CBT is arguably the most frequently used form of therapy not only at a drug and alcohol rehab, but for patients who suffer from a wide variety of mental health conditions such as anxiety, depression, PTSD, schizophrenia, and more. The purpose of CBT is to help patients identify and address their negative cognitive and behavioural patterns which not only enable but exacerbate their addiction. It is a communication-based therapy, and an example of individual therapy, which maximises the level of personalisation which patients will experience.
    • Dialectical Behavioural Therapy (DBT): DBT is a similar form of therapy to CBT, however, it places more emphasis on catering to patients who are suffering from intense emotions. It is particularly effective for patients who suffer from issues related to anxiety and depression. DBT is also a communication-based therapy, and its purpose is to help patients manage, not reject, their intense emotions in a more positive way.
    • Motivational Interviewing: While not necessarily a form of therapy like CBT or DBT, the purpose of MI is to increase the effectiveness and benefits of other forms of therapy. The goal of MI is to increase the patient’s engagement and commitment levels to recovery methods. This can be done through undergoing one-to-one counselling sessions with a licensed therapist who will ask evocative questions in order to incite the intrinsic motivation of the patient.
    • Acceptance and Commitment Therapy: Similar to MI is ACT. While not necessarily a form of therapy which tackles symptoms of addiction, its purpose is to change patients who are passive or ambivalent towards recovery into patients who actively engage in recovery methods. Additionally, patients will learn how to accept their flaws and encourage positive changes in their life, as well as learn about various stress management and mindfulness techniques.
    • Group Therapy: There are also many benefits to be had by involving multiple participants in a single session of therapy. Group Therapy can yield many different benefits such as a sense of community, social reinforcement, peer-to-peer discussion, a platform to communicate and share insight into other people’s experiences with addiction recovery, and much more.
    • Family Therapy: Another form of Group Therapy but on a much more personal and intimate level is Family Therapy. Family Therapy caters to a wide range of family dynamics, whether they are positive or problematic, and its purpose is to help family members understand the ways in which they can support their loved one and create a more hospitable recovery environment for their loved one who is battling addiction.
    • Holistic Therapy: In contrast to other forms of therapy which heavily rely on communication is Holistic Therapy. Holistic Therapy incorporates unique and engaging activities in order to foster physical, mental, and spiritual well-being. Some examples of Holistic Therapy include yoga, meditation, aromatherapy, acupuncture, massages, adventure therapy, art therapy, and much more. While it does not directly address addiction, it helps improve the general well-being of patients which is vital towards increasing their responsiveness to recovery.

    For more information about drug and alcohol rehab in St Helens, please contact us today on 0800 088 66 86.

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    For more information about drug and alcohol rehab in St Helens, please contact Rehab Recovery at 0800 088 66 86.


    [1] The Brain Disease Model of Addiction

    [2] Adult Substance Misuse Treatment Statistics 2020 to 2021: Report

    [3] Drug Misuse in England and Wales: Year Ending June 2022

    [4] Genes Matter in Addiction

    [5] Cognitive Behavioural Therapy in Addiction Treatment – Rehab Recovery

    [6] One to One Therapy for Addiction Treatment – Rehab Recovery

    [7] DBT for Addiction Treatment – Rehab Recovery

    [8] Motivational Interviewing for Addiction Treatment

    [9] Alternative & Holistic Therapy for Addiction – Rehab Recovery

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