Few things are as frustrating and terrifying as having a loved one who is suffering from heroin addiction. Most people are aware that heroin is highly addictive and that using heroin presents a number of very serious health risks. Every year, thousands of addicts die from heroin overdoses, and thousands more find that their lives are effectively destroyed as a consequence of addiction. If someone you care about is addicted to heroin, here are five tips that may help you encourage them to seek the treatment that they need.
1. Remind Them That People Care About Them
One thing that leads many addicts to seek treatment is the reminder that they have people in their life who care deeply for them, and for whom they want to take the difficult steps to get healthy and sober. It can be very difficult to remain calm around a person who is using heroin because it is very likely that there behavior is irrational and unstable. Often, people who are struggling with heroin addiction may experience bouts of extreme anger or sadness, which may be accompanied by periods of extreme sadness or moodiness. Doing what you can to remind an addict that they are loved can help wit their self image and make it more likely that they will seek help.
2. Do Not Enable Them
There is a fine line between showing support to an addict and enabling them, but this is a very important distinction to make. It is very common for the loved ones of an addict to be very worried about an addict’s well being as important life functions like paying rent or having food may be abandoned in favor of finding more drugs. The fact of the matter is, though, that supporting an addict in any way while they are using is a form of enabling that makes it much less likely an addict will realize the true consequences of their addiction.
3. Stage An Intervention
An intervention is not an attempt to gang up on an addict, nor is it a means of forcing an addict to seek help. The reality of addiction is that no addict can get better or get treatment unless they have made the decision themselves to get better. An intervention is a valuable tool, however, because it is a chance for the loved ones of an addict to make it clear how their behavior is impacting those around them. Often, when a person is addicted to drugs or alcohol, they become so self absorbed that they may truly not be aware of the impact they are having on the people they care about. It is generally wise to seek the help of a professional, objective interventionist before staging an intervention.
4. Encourage Them To Attend a Twelve Step Meeting
Even if a person is not ready to attend twelve step meetings on a regular basis, visiting one can be a good way for them to realize that they want and need help because of the fact that they will be able to hear stories from other addicts who have successfully worked toward sobriety, even after severely struggling with addiction. This can help an addict realize that recovery is possible.
5. Buy Them Some Books On Recovery
Chances are, some part of your loved one does in fact want to find help. Having some books available about the nature of recovery and the ways in which it can be achieved can be a highly effective way of inspiring them to take the first steps toward finding the support they need to withdraw from heroin and get sober.