Addiction Treatment & Addiction Therapy Options

Benefits and Risks of Holding an Intervention

The goal of an intervention is to lead an addict to voluntarily seek addiction treatment. There are two basic categories of interventions that include the following:

  • Informal interventions are often casual like a conversation between friends or loved ones, during which you can tell the addict about your concerns regarding his behavior. You might mention that the addict does not look physically healthy, that he is spending time with people who are not constructive in his life or that he appears to be spending excessive amounts of money on drugs or alcohol.
  • Formal interventions are often more organized, planned and may include several friends, family members and loved ones who gather together to confront a person about his or her behavior, recommending that he or she seek help.

There is no criterion that suggests that one type of intervention is better than the other. Whichever method  that achieves the goal of getting an addict into treatment is the right choice.

Risks of Interventions

Regardless of the type of intervention you choose, there are some risks that you need to consider, including the following:

  • The addict may make a scene, become verbally abusive or behave in an irrational manner
  • The addict may drop out of school, move out of the house or stop working as a result of the intervention
  • The addict may, as a form of rebellion, use drugs more or behave in a riskier manner
  • The addict may attempt to retaliate against family members

While these potential outcomes may not be what you intended, you need to consider whether these outcomes are worse than the person continuing to be addicted. If the person continues to be an addict, the likelihood of these behaviors occurring without the intervention may also increase. To minimize these risks, the best plan is to organize your intervention carefully and use a professional interventionist.

Planning an Intervention

According to the Mayo Clinic, to minimize risks associated with an intervention and to prepare for an effective intervention, you need to consider a number of factors, including the following:

  • Initial planning – It is often beneficial to consult with an intervention professional, qualified professional counselor or a social worker to get started on the right foot. Even if you choose not to use the full services these professionals offer, you will get insights into what you need to do to conduct an intervention.
  • Gathering information – It can help to get detailed and specific information about the addict’s behaviors and also get information about treatment programs.
  • Meeting with the team – The intervention team can benefit from meeting and practicing for the intervention. Team members need to be sure that the entire team is presenting a consistent message to the addict.
  • Determining consequences – Often the most difficult part of the planning, the team needs to decide the consequences they will present to the addict should she or he not accept treatment.

Before you actually conduct the intervention, you may want to consult again with the interventionist to make sure that you have everything in order.

Find Help with Interventions

Intervention can be an effective strategy for many people who are addicted to drugs. However, planning and conducting an intervention is not always easy. Fortunately, we can help. Please call our toll-free helpline today. We are available 24 hours a day to answer any questions you might have about interventions.

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