In time, addicts will seek help when the pain of feeding their addiction is perceived to be greater than the pain of giving up. Tackling the issues associated with ‘starting again’ such as paying off dealers, covering the cost of general living and prescribing alternative drugs can have a detrimental effect if the addict chooses to act alone without guidance or structure.
Under the supervision of professional and personal helpers, the PROMIS programme is therefore designed in such a way that in the beginning, the addict is actually required to face the consequences of their behaviour in an uncompromising examination of how drug addiction ruins lives.
Wherever it is deemed appropriate, a course of detoxification is recommended for recreational drug addicts. In actual fact, detoxification is the most simple and straightforward aspect of the treatment; it is the learning process associated with staying off drugs which proves to be the most traumatic episode.
Patients on heroin are detoxified on a reducing basis over their recommended treatment duration. Patients on cocaine or crack, tranquillisers, sleeping tablets and anti-depressants have to be detoxified more slowly over a longer period. Patients on amphetamines (speed), LSD (acid), Ecstasy and cannabis require no detoxification, although mild sedation at night might be helpful for the first two or three nights.