Across the globe, a lot of people are getting addicted to different substances; they either use it or sell it for their sake. But the sad truth about substance abuse is that it chooses no age. From adolescents to adults, statistics and surveys shows a significant number of them getting involved with substance abuse. There may be treatment facilities like rehabilitation centers to where we can admit addicts but the impact of addiction in their lives would always linger on. Apart from the medical regimen they also need a professional adviser; someone who reaches out to them when they think the world has forsaken them. They are in the person of our drug and alcohol counselors. Who are they and what do they really do to help the addicts? Let us find out as we continue below.
What is a Drug and Alcohol Counselor?
A drug and alcohol counselor is part of the health team that focuses on providing the information regarding substance abuse and how to deal with its detrimental effects. They play a very significant role in the rehabilitation of the patients because from the word counselor, they are adept therapeutic communicators among the health professionals. The main duty of a counselor is to reach out for patients and talk things out about the causes and reasons of their addiction. Through such interaction, the counselor will be able to determine the root cause and the type of addiction in which he or she is involved with. Before any session, the counselor should keep in mind that establishment of rapport should take place first because that would yield to a cozy environment in which the addict would not feel uneasy sharing any information to the counselor.
There are a lot of methods in which a counselor can employ to help the patients alleviate their addiction from drugs and alcohol. There is what we call a one on one meeting or group counseling. These two common methods are the simplest but creates a great impact on the lives of different patients. Through constant interaction and sharing of feelings, there will be gradual recovery and a positive change in the way patients see their negative lives. Apart from the methods mentioned, there is also what we call family intervention in which a counselor will collaborate with family members to figure out what are the best solutions to help their loved one and how to implement it. Moreover, a counselor in the clinical setting can also administer treatment regimen to help patients recover from substance abuse.
The minimum requirement to become a drug and alcohol counselor is to obtain a high school diploma. Usually, counselors are trained on the job and the training program may last from 6 weeks to 2 years. Some colleges also offer training programs that include courses on the effects of drugs and alcohol. Certification in this program is available from the National Board for Certified Counselors. Some counselors get their master’s degrees in mental health counseling to have an edge among other aspiring counselors.
Being a drug and alcohol counselor is a light job because your main duty focuses on interacting with patients. The challenge here is how to deepen the value of your work for you will become a change agent; changing the lives of those addicts and helping them get out of their depressing situation.