Crystal meth is one of the most dangerous drugs available today. It is extremely damaging physically, mentally, and socially and some of the neurological damage caused by using meth may be permanent. Even so, meth use has been growing in popularity over the last several decades. The need for effective treatment for meth addiction is needed today more than ever. The Summit Wellness Group is one of the leading meth rehab centers in Georgia. Our meth addiction treatment program is aimed at providing our clients with the ability to reclaim their lives, and to live free from crystal meth addiction.
How We Treat Meth Addiction
The Summit Wellness Group’s meth treatment center in Atlanta, Georgia utilizes a variety of the latest and most effective treatment techniques to help our clients successfully overcome crystal meth addiction. Using a combined approach of integrative talk therapies, psychiatric care, and holistic therapies we aim to treat the underlying causes of addiction and help our clients restore their lives. Addressing the psychological, neurological, and physical damage done by meth addiction is critical to helping our clients improve their overall wellness and health.
The Summit Wellness Group’s team of trained professionals include clinical therapists, counselors, psychiatrists, doctors, and people in recovery themselves who work tirelessly to guide our clients through the journey of recovery from crystal meth addiction. We walk with our clients through the entire recovery process, from detox to aftercare and every step in between.
Important Meth Addiction Treatment Considerations
Because meth is so devastating to both the mind and body, there are several factors to keep in mind when seeking treatment:
Physical Health Concerns
Malnutrition is very common with meth addiction, and the damage can be worsened by extended insomnia and sleep deprivation. Additionally, depending on the route someone chose to use meth, further complications can arise such as infection, kidney and liver issues, or heart and lung problems. Just a few of these issues may include:
- Loss of Sense of Smell
- Frequent Nosebleeds, Sinus Infections, and Deviated or Perforated Septum
- Abscesses (which may become septic and lethal)
- Increased Risk of Disease (HIV/AIDS, Hepatitis B or C, etc.)
- Lung, Liver, Kidney, Heart, and Intestinal Damage
- Meth Mouth (extreme dental and gum line decay)
Mental Health Concerns
Often the most severe areas of damage produced by meth use is on the psychological health of users. The way meth affects the brain is extremely powerful, and can cause long term changes in brain structure. Some of the more common psychological issues include:
- Dementia-Like Symptoms
- Increased Aggression
- Mood Disorder (depression, anxiety, etc.)
- Psychotic States (mania, extreme paranoia, delusional thinking, etc.)
- Fatigue or Lethargy
- Inability to Focus or Concentrate
Meth overdoses are, unfortunately, very common these days. Using meth alone can easily result in an overdose, and a large number of medications can interact with meth to increase the chances of an overdose. The variety of medications which can interact with meth is immense and includes antidepressants, antipsychotics, mood stabilizers, and even radiopharmaceuticals used to treat tumors or used as contrast in MRI and CAT scans. Regardless of how an overdose is achieved, the outcome is always very bad. Meth overdoses can produce a variety of issues including brain damage, coma, heart attack, and of course, death.
Meth Withdrawal And Detox
While meth does not usually have any physical withdrawal symptoms, the psychological symptoms of withdrawal can be intense and may lead to complications. The way meth affects the brain can cause profound psychological issues during withdrawal, and it is highly recommended to seek medical and psychiatric help to safely go through meth detox. The symptoms can be reduced with the appropriate medical supervision and care. Getting through this difficult time safely will give someone the best possible chances for achieving long-term recovery.
Customized Meth Addiction Treatment Plan
Addiction is a very complex and layered condition, and at the Summit Wellness Group we work with our clients to tailor a treatment plan which will address the specific needs of each individual client. This plan is developed in a one-on-one session with our treatment team, and is unique for every person. Some of the contributing factors that are considered may include:
- Other drug or alcohol use
- The length of time that meth was used, and the amounts of meth used
- Any co-occurring mental health issues
- Physical health complications
- Current living or housing situation
- Insurance coverage or self-pay
- Preference for outpatient or inpatient treatment
- A person’s commitment to their recovery
At the Summit Wellness Group we know that addiction does not discriminate, so neither should recovery. We have helped people from all walks of life and economic backgrounds and we will do what we can to help our clients achieve recovery, regardless of their socioeconomic background.
Managing Your Meth Withdrawal Symptoms
While meth does not produce physical withdrawal symptoms, the mental experience of withdrawal can be very uncomfortable. The psychological distress can be very demoralizing, and help is required if someone is to have the best possible chance of successful recovery. Some of the most common symptoms of meth withdrawal include:
- Deep Depression (possibly with suicidal ideation)
- Increased Anxiety and Restlessness
- Fatigue and Lethargy
- Sleep Disturbances
- Anhedonia (inability to feel pleasure)
- Intense Cravings for Meth
- Clouded and Disorganized Thinking
- Very Vivid Dreams or Nightmares
While meth withdrawal can be quite difficult, there are way to reduce the symptoms. Having the help needed to minimize the discomfort can make all the difference in the world. The Summit Wellness Group is connected to a network of partner detox facilities which are equipped with the professional staff, most effective medications, and compassionate support services to treat meth withdrawal and reduce the most uncomfortable symptoms. Once detox has been completed, clients are welcome to begin their treatment safely here at The Summit Wellness Group.
MEDICATIONS TO REDUCE METH CRAVINGS
Cravings for meth are usually the biggest threat to early recovery. Luckily, there are medications which can help to reduce or minimize these cravings. The brain will take time to heal and return to normal function but until then, giving our clients the best chance to build a solid foundation in recovery is our goal. Some medications which may be helpful in this regard include:
- Naltrexone: Usually used to treat opioid or alcohol addiction, this medication may reduce cravings for meth as well.
- Bupropion: An antidepressant and smoking cessation aid, it may be able to reduce meth cravings.
- Quetiapine: Originally an antipsychotic, this medication has been shown to reduce cravings in people with drug or alcohol dependence disorder.
- Selegiline: A medication most commonly used to treat Parkinson’s, it may help to reduce meth cravings and depression.
- Fluoxetine: An antidepressant, it may reduce meth cravings.
- Imipramine: A tricyclic antidepressant, it has been shown to improve meth addiction treatment outcomes.
- Mirtazapine: An antidepressant used for major depressive disorder, the way this medication works is not fully understood, although it may be able to reduce cravings for meth.
These medications are not a cure for meth addiction, but they will give our clients some relief and more time to develop the tools necessary to deal with cravings in a healthy and constructive way.
OUR THERAPEUTIC APPROACH TO METH ADDICTION TREATMENT
Addiction in general is a very complex disease with a wide range of causes and contributing factors. Meth addiction is no exception, as the effects of long-term meth use can greatly compromise someone’s ability to trust and empathize with others. This lack of trust and a reduced ability to connect with others can make recovery more difficult. The therapeutic practices that we utilize are aimed at restoring trust in others and giving someone a feeling of security when opening up about their struggles with addiction. We work to help our clients uncover the underlying thought processes and behaviors that may contribute to the negative cycle of addiction. Some of the techniques that we use in this regard are referred to as “integrative talk therapies” and include:
- Motivational Interviewing
- Group Therapy
- CBT (Cognitive Behavioral Therapy)
- DBT (Dialectical Behavior Therapy)
- Trauma Informed Care
Motivational interviewing and group therapy are aimed at uncovering the desire for recovery, as well as building trust in others so that this desire may be more effectively realized. Motivational interviewing is used to help someone reveal the desire to change, and to articulate this desire. Being able to confront and express this desire is the first step towards recovery. Once that has been achieved, group therapy can help someone make connections to others who are going, or have gone, through the same struggles. Feeling a sense of community with others who are also trying to heal is a very powerful component in recovery from meth addiction.
CBT and DBT are therapeutic techniques which are used to help change unhealthy patterns of thinking and behavior. CBT helps to take a look at the interplay between thoughts, feelings, and behaviors. Once the interaction is better understood, DBT helps give our clients some tools and practices with which to interrupt or change unhealthy patterns of thinking and behavior. When used together these techniques are extremely powerful, and can help give our clients the most effective toolkit to achieve lasting sobriety.
Trauma informed care is more of a general approach to treatment which pervades all that we do here at The Summit Wellness Group. Trauma is very common in those who struggle with an addiction, and keeping this in mind when providing treatment is critical when it comes to building trust and a sense of security for our clients. Everyone deserves to feel safe and secure, that is the first goal we aim to achieve with our clients.
OUR PSYCHIATRIC APPROACH TO METH ADDICTION TREATMENT
Psychiatric care is extremely important in meth addiction treatment. After meth withdrawal, there can be lingering symptoms that take some time to dissipate. These symptoms can be reduced, and our clients state of mind can benefit from medications. When treatment begins, clients will meet with a psychiatrist to determine what their medication needs may be. Regular psychiatrist appointments will continue throughout treatment to monitor the effectiveness of any medications, and adjust them if needed.
Some of the classes of medications that are most commonly used may include:
- Non-Benzodiazepine Anti-Anxiety Medications
- GABA Agents (for paranoia and anxiety issues)
- Certain Blood Pressure Medications (for their secondary anti-anxiety effects)
- Sleep Aids (non-sedatives like melatonin or diphenhydramine)
Every person is unique when it comes to medication and will tolerate or respond to particular medications differently. We take great care in prescribing and monitoring the effectiveness of medications for our clients, and work to tailor medications regimens to each individual.
OUR HOLISTIC APPROACH TO METH ADDICTION TREATMENT
Aside from medications, there are other ways to improve someone’s overall state of mind. The holistic therapies that we employ are intended to recruit the body itself as an actor on the stage of recovery. Turning the normal regenerative and healing abilities of the body toward the goal of meth addiction recovery can be extremely helpful. Some of the ways we achieve this include therapies such as:
- Nutritional Classes
- Guided Meditation
- Art Therapy
- Adventure Therapy
- Therapeutic Fitness
- Massage Therapy
- Chiropractic Care
While it seems like common sense, healthy nutrition is crucial in meth addiction recovery. The neurotransmitter imbalances produced through meth addiction can be healed more quickly when a client is engaged in healthy nutrition practices. Neurotransmitters themselves are protein based, and require a variety of vitamins for the brain to synthesize. By practicing well-rounded eating and nutrition habits, someone can improve their overall state of mind and give the body and brain everything they need to heal.
Guided meditation and art therapy work in tandem with some of the other therapeutic techniques such as group therapy and motivational interviewing. In particular, guided meditation can help our clients to be more relaxed and peaceful. Art therapy can then provide a way to express someone’s thoughts and feelings in a healthy and constructive way. When these practices are used together, it may also become easier to share someone’s thoughts and feelings with others. In this way, these therapies make it easier to connect with others on a deeper, more intimate level.
Yoga is a stretching and mindfulness exercise which can reduce anxiety, and promote a sense of calm. Adventure therapy is essentially light exercise which takes place outdoors. This helps regulate certain neurotransmitters such as serotonin and norepinephrine, and can activate the normal opioid system of the body. Therapeutic fitness takes a similar approach and can produce similar benefits.
Massage therapy and chiropractic care are both low impact therapies, but are nevertheless very beneficial. Both of these therapies can reduce stress and promote a sense of calm and wellbeing. Using the natural regulatory and regenerative processes of the body can strengthen them and make them more effective while improving someone’s state of mind at the same time.
WHY IS GETTING HELP AT A METH REHAB SO IMPORTANT?
Recovery from crystal meth addiction can be quite challenging, even with help. A deep understanding of the unique challenges posed by meth addiction is necessary if we are going to give our clients the best possible chance at achieving successful, long-term recovery. Having a team of compassionate people available who can empathize with someone’s struggle is critical to success. Seeing that there is life beyond crystal meth can be an eye opening and motivating experience.
Getting through meth withdrawal is often the biggest challenge to recovery. The sometimes severe depression, anxiety, and discomfort can make a person feel that life without meth is not worthwhile. The most relapses often occur in early meth withdrawal and because of the high risk during this time, the need for help in this early stage is paramount. Having medical, therapeutic, and emotional support during and after withdrawal will put someone in the best possible position to continue the journey of recovery.
OUR METH ADDICTION AFTERCARE PROGRAM
The commitment we make to our clients does not end at the conclusion of our treatment program. Recovery is a journey, and we aim to walk with our clients and give them all the help we possibly can. The Summit Wellness Group has a far-reaching network of connections in the Atlanta-area recovery communities, and we will make these available to help our clients in any way possible. This may include finding a recovery fellowship convenient to our client’s home, finding a sponsor, and finding a sober living program.
We also offer our clients continued counseling with their therapist as well as participation in our Aftercare Alumni program. The Alumni program is available to all who have completed treatment and continued their recovery, and hosts gatherings and events throughout the year. This can be a great benefit to provide a sense of community and networking opportunities to those who are continuing to live a sober life.
There are many different recovery fellowships in the Atlanta area, including Crystal Meth Anonymous. There are also many non-12 Step recovery fellowships such as SMART Recovery and Celebrate Recovery. We will help our clients find the recovery fellowship which best suits them and their needs. Finding a group in which someone can make connections and feel a sense of kinship is a crucial part of the recovery process, and we will help with this in any ways we can. The goal is long term sobriety, and with help it is possible.