There is no greater pain than watching a friend, close relative, spouse, a child, or a loved one go through the pangs of substance addiction and yet living in denial about the severity of their condition. For the addict, addiction has a way of taking total control of the mind and the person in question simply acts according to how they feel at the moment.
Getting help, for an addict, is usually not an option because they are probably have given in to the pull of the substance and too physically and emotionally weak to try and resist. It is often time, left to the loved ones to muster up the courage to get the affected person some help, either by conviction or force. A conviction may be possible with the right strategy and interventions but can you force a drug addict into rehab against their own will?
According to reports, substance addiction is one of the leading causes of mental illness and many individuals are living with addictions. About 20.8 million people within the age range of 12 and above met the criteria for substance use disorder in 2015. The number of people living with addiction has been on the rise and only a small percentage of the number actually goes through the rehabilitation program.
Can you make an addict go for rehabilitation against their will? The answer may not be so simple. Even though it is mostly recommended that the addict is convinced of the reasons why they need help and support them in any way possible, it is also possible to coerce a person into rehab without their acceptance.
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Criteria for Forcing an Addict into Rehab
The first condition is that the individual is your child or you are his or her legal guardian and that the individual in question is a minor (below 18 years). If such a person is older than 18, they can be referred to as an adult and cannot be forced into rehab. Many parents lose their patience with young adults who are adults at this age and simply make them move out of the house to set their lives in order by themselves, however, this neither depicts true love or is right.
There are other ways to force the person into rehab, especially if the person resides under your roof. Here are a few criteria that you can use in your favor to force them into treatment:
- You should have concrete evidence to prove that such a person has a substance addiction
- There has to be credible proof by witnesses, or material that such a person has attempted to inflict harm upon themselves, and others.
- Proof that the individual’s addiction has rendered them physically incapable of taking care of themselves when there is no one else to do so.
This information will furnish you with enough evidence to pursue a court order for forced rehabilitation. However, it is important to seek legal counsel before going down this path.
Court-Ordered Substance Abuse Rehab: How Does It Work?
If you have decided to go through a court-ordered drug rehabilitation for your ward, then you have probably taken into consideration the fact that he or she may develop an abhor for you and may feel betrayed and become completely impossible to reason with. To the addict, this may seem like disloyalty- giving them the impression that they can no longer count on anyone. This is why it is important to seek legal counsel to be absolutely sure that this is the last resort and that you have enough case built up to get the court in your favor. Here are the likely procedures for court-order drug rehab:
- A form indicating the need for a forced rehabilitation program may be filled and submitted for review by the judge
- The judge will then issue a hearing where you and your ward will be given the opportunity to present your case or defend it.
- Once a verdict is reached, your ward will be transferred to the custody of a rehab facility for compulsory rehabilitation.
This method may seem a bit rigorous especially for the parent that prefers to keep these sorts of problems within the family. The only problem is the possibility that your child’s addiction may deteriorate and lead to hospitalization at some point if urgent care is not taken.
Another way to force a drug addict into rehab is upon emergency hospitalization as a result of substance abuse. An order for emergency rehab is typically issued when a person is hospitalized on grounds of physical and mental health problems due to drug abuse. During treatment, the individual may be transferred into a rehab facility for continued treatment. How is this possible?
Rehab Based on Hospital Evaluation
When an individual is admitted into a hospital, the person may be evaluated for drug use by specialists. They may be taken in for screening by law enforcers and then taken into custody for rehabilitation. You, as the guardian, may be required to fill a form as to why your child needs rehabilitation. After that, a court hearing will be scheduled to determine the next phase.
It is common for a person who is addicted to drugs to refuse professional help. A forced rehabilitation may lead to a feeling of resentment in most cases but this decision may be necessary to save the addict’s life. It is important to understand that a drug addict is never in control and may find themselves in a very steep health condition from excessive drug use.
Is Forced Rehabilitation Usually Successful?
There is a lot of controversy on the efficacy of forced rehabilitation and how effective it is for drug addicts. The issue is that drug rehabilitation, whether forced or voluntary, always depends on the will and resolution of the patient to take their life back. In many cases, the individual who is forced to undergo rehabilitation may complete the program and be released from the institution but may experience a relapse because of the lack of motivation to live a sober life.
Consciousness is required after rehabilitation, the individual must change their lifestyle and develop new habits in order to have a fighting chance, this is often lacking in cases of forced drug addiction rehabilitation.
If forced addiction rehabilitation still depends largely on the effort of the drug addict in order to be successful then this may not be the way to get the best results. What is the best way to get a drug addict to go for rehab without forcing them?
The Power of Planned Intervention
Interventions are the best way to show your loved one that you truly care about their wellbeing by firmly stating how you feel about their condition in the presence of close friends, families, and other persons that they may love and respect.
The aim of an intervention is not to be judgmental or make the person feel inadequate. The point is to show full support by letting the addict know that you and the others are dedicated in showing him or her complete support in their journey to regaining their life back and how much the addiction has taken a toll on the relationship between the addict and everyone else.
Interventions are best planned and rehearsed multiple times ahead of the date with the help of an intervention specialist.