While each situation is unique and deserves to be examined independently, many families chose to (finally & hopefully) get their loved one into inpatient alcohol treatment by staging an “intervention.” While most interventions aren’t anywhere as dramatic as those shown on prime-time tv, they can be extraordinarily effective. The way in which interventions succeed is that they create an artificial bottom for substance addicts to hit. The alcoholics/addicts are given ultimatums that cause them to examine what will happen in their lives if they continue using. The brilliance of an intervention, though, is in the timing. The natural consequences of the behavior are presented in the intervention but at a time where the substance abusing individual still has the time/ health/ support to recover. Otherwise, the same decisions (stop using or end up on the street, etc) would play out naturally later on in life when he/she has a significantly smaller chance of recovering (due to degraded health, extreme isolation, and a further depressed situation).
Inpatient alcohol treatment programs (the goal of most interventions) offer a refuge for alcoholics and addicts to come to begin and make significant strides in their healing process. While inpatient alcohol treatment centers can provide some individuals with all of the help he/she needs to maintain life-long sobriety, most people will need extra support that assists in the transition. While it may seem strange to those unfamiliar with rehab settings, those who can stay sober in inpatient alcohol treatment programs may not be able to stay sober at home when he/she returns to the work, home, and life stressors that played a major role in the development and perpetuation of the addiction. With drug/alcohol accessibility completely wiped out in inpatient alcohol and drug treatment centers, the clients do not have to deal with the same degree of temptation that they will when they return home. In order to “build up their tolerance for recovery” and not fall into temptation of abusing substances to cope or “enjoy” life, most addicts and alcoholics need a long-term transitional program that will build on the solid foundations set up by their primary treatment program and will bridge these lessons into the addict/alcoholic’s “real” life to maximize their chances of recovery.