Drug addiction is usually treated through a combination of medication and behavioral therapy, according to the National Institute on Drug Abuse. The purpose of drug addiction therapy is to minimize withdrawal symptoms and to correct the behaviors that lead to drug addiction. The treatment of a drug addict usually must be devised specifically for that addict in order to be effective.
Behavioral therapy is used to deal with the attitudes and habits that lead to drug abuse, describes the National Institute on Drug Abuse. One common method is the use of cognitive behavioral therapy. This type of therapy involves a limited number of sessions with a therapist, explains Mayo Clinic. The therapist attempts to help the drug addict realize the habits and thought patterns that lead to their drug abuse. Another common form of therapy is contingency management. This involves rewarding drug addicts for continued sobriety with rewards ranging from cash to entries for raffles, states the National Institute on Drug Abuse.
Medication is often paired with therapy to deal with withdrawal symptoms and the stress that often leads to relapse, explains the National Institute on Drug Abuse. Drugs like methadone, which reduces the withdrawal symptoms of opioids, and naltrexone, which reduces the withdrawal symptoms of alcohol, are commonly used in drug addiction therapy.