Treatment Options

There are many treatment options available and ADIS can help find the right one for you.

Counselling

Also called therapy, allied health treatment or psychosocial support.

What is it?

Counselling involves exploring social and psychological issues with a professional for support through life changes. Counselling is provided by psychologists, social workers and experienced healthcare professionals.  It is often the first step in addressing alcohol and drug concerns. Counselling can be provided either online, over the phone, or face to face.

What to expect?

In alcohol and drug counselling, a person can expect to engage with a professional worker who will listen non-judgmentally and help to identify goals, provide helpful strategies and link with other community supports.

How can it help?  

Counselling improves people’s ability to address problems in a positive way, clarify issues and explore options. It can improve the effectiveness of other treatments such as withdrawal management.

Withdrawal management/detoxification

Also called detox or withdrawal.

What is it?

Withdrawal management involves medical and psychological support to reduce the risks and unpleasant symptoms associated with cutting back or stopping the intake of alcohol and/or drugs.

What to expect?

People can feel unwell during withdrawal and may require medical treatment and support to cope with the symptoms. Treatment usually takes 5-7 days, it can be done as either an outpatient or an inpatient. Outpatient means the person will withdraw at home (or another safe place) with daily visits to a health professional, or in some cases they can be admitted for inpatient treatment.

How can it help?

Withdrawal management helps to deal with the physical and psychological health aspects of alcohol and drug dependence when cutting back or stopping use. Detoxing from alcohol or benzodiazepines without medical intervention can be life threatening. To be accepted for residential rehabilitation in Queensland a person must first complete withdrawal management.

Rehabilitation

Also called rehab. Either residential or non-residential.

What is it?

Rehab is an intensive, structured treatment, for people who are experiencing longer-term, problematic substance dependence, who have tried other treatment options but have not been able to achieve or maintain their treatment goals. Rehabilitation involves a mix of one-on-one counselling, group work, peer support (which could mean attending Alcoholics Anonymous – AA; or Narcotics Anonymous - NA meetings), life skills, and team-community building exercises.

What to expect?

Rehab requires a commitment to abstinence from all substances. It is long-term treatment, generally between 3 and 12 months. In residential rehab a person will live in the treatment facility which provides 24-hour supervision by suitably qualified staff.

Non-residential rehab (sometimes called day programs) offer daily intensive, structured treatment for people who remain living at home.

There are costs involved in residential rehabilitation, please contact ADIS for detailed information.

How can it help?

With daily access to treatment and support, rehab helps people focus all their energy on lifestyle changes to achieve recovery. It’s a way for someone to press pause on day to day life while they work on their alcohol or drug issues.

Support Groups

Also called mutual aid, mutual help, peer support or self-help.

What is it?

A support group is a gathering of people providing each other mutual help. Group members share a common problem, their goal is to help one another deal with related issues. Examples are groups like Smart Recovery, Alcoholics Anonymous (AA) and Narcotics Anonymous (NA).

What to expect?

Group meetings are held in person and/or online, with the aim of providing a safe and supportive network. These groups get together and share stories, strategies and tools. Peer support groups are also available for families and significant others who are worried about a loved one’s use of alcohol or other drugs (e.g. Al-Anon).

How can it help?

Many find it comforting to share their problems with others who have had similar experiences and understand what they’ve been through.

Opioid Treatment

Also called opioid substitution; pharmacotherapy; methadone program; opioid replacement.

What is it?

Opioid treatment is a treatment which can be offered to people who are dependent on opioids (e.g. heroin, oxycodone, morphine, codeine etc). It uses a prescription medication (methadone or buprenorphine) to replace a drug of dependence with a prescribed drug as well as offering counselling when required.  

What to expect?

Generally withdrawal/detox is not the best option for people dependent on opioids, a replacement medication such as buprenorphine or methadone is a better approach. People are encouraged to remain on medium term treatment as part of the Queensland Opioid Treatment Program.  A comprehensive medical assessment and eligibility criteria are applied to determine whether someone is suitable for this treatment.

How can it help?

Opioid treatment is effective in reducing illicit opioid use, blood borne virus risk, death from overdose, criminal activity, and financial and other stresses on drug users and their families. This treatment has the best chance of success when it forms part of a comprehensive treatment program.

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