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In contemporary society, the rates of drug and substance abuse have risen to alarming rates. This can be attributed to the fact that drugs and other substances used for wrong purpose have gained popularity in the society. The types of drugs have also highly increased giving the population a very wide range of substances to abuse.
A drug is a chemical substance in nature that affects the normal body chemistry. This means that any substance, which affects normal operation of a human body, is a drug. Most of the drugs in either synthetic or natural categories have effects on the body of the victim and are taken mostly for beneficial purposes. Abuse sets in at the moment these substances are used without following the given prescription by a medical personnel or using them for the wrong reason.
After addiction, a person yearns to get out of it due to the consequences. Some of the consequences that make people to think of shunning drug use include increased expenditure, effect on productivity of the person and poverty due to the excessive expenditure in drug expenses. The process of getting out of drug use is also quite difficult and involves a number of approaches (Campbell et al., 2012).
Since addiction makes a person a slave of the drug, shunning the addictive substance requires some treatment. This paper will focus on the various drug addictions treatment methods.
Commonly used treatment methods are under my research. The preferred treatment of each type of addiction, short description of each type of addiction and how it is treated will be analyzed. .
The hypothesis of the article include: increased awareness on the consequences of drug abuse and anti-drug abuse campaigns in the education systems can reduce drug abuse, and the process of decreasing the gap between the literate and the illiterate can increase cohesion among people and reduce poverty levels as well as control entry of drugs in countries. The articles used for the research elaborate more on drug use in jails, implementing the treatment process, facts on treatment and recovery from drug abuse and reasons why people turn to drugs (Campbell et al., 2012). The articles discussed below show some facets of addiction in America and how they are dealt with.
In the article ‘Facts about Drug and Alcohol Addiction, Treatment, Recovery and Use
’, the author carried out an actual survey in America in an attempt to deduce some facts underlying the use of alcohol and other drugs, their respective treatments and recovery formulas. Since not all these drugs have the same levels of addiction and recovery formula (National Clearinghouse for Alcohol and Drug Information, 2001). The author of the article ‘Substance Abuse and Treatment Policy’ does this work from an American criminal authorities’ perspective where he first quotes that ‘providing drug offenders or addicts wit comprehensive treatment saves life protects the community’. This is a famous saying by an American doctor who started the campaign against drug use in America and preferred treatment to imprisonment.
In the introductory part of the article, the author gives some background information why he has chosen America as the zone to base his study. Currently, America has the highest number of inmates who have been convicted due to drug use or related activities. In his personal opinion, the author appears convinced that jails are not the best correction facilities to drug offenders if they are not treated to get out of drugs. This argument coincides with that of the preceding article, which examines treatment and recovery from drugs as a communal task, which should not involve seclusion (Academy for Educational Development with funding from CDC, 2001).
In the article ‘Substance Abuse Treatment for Drug Users in the Criminal and Justice System
’, the author makes some comments that are much intertwined with the preceding article about the drug abuse levels in the American country. The author uses this statement to draw attention from readers as to why he is out to write about drug use and treatment procedures. In the opening statement, the author reveals that the levels of drug abuse inmates have risen to about 80%. This is alarming since such a high number depict very low productivity of the population (Justice Policy Institute, 2008).
In the research on Facts about Drug and Alcohol Addiction, Treatment, Recovery and Use
, the researchers embarked on the use of secondary data sources whereby they used some documents from rehabilitation centers to try and deduce the levels of addiction and treatment. However, the data obtained would not give the actual picture on the ground since it relied on the past thus a primary data source had to be used. This called for use of interviews and personal observation. Under the docket of interviews, the researchers accompanied some crusaders where they had chances of meeting large masses of people from whom they deduced information on the extent of drug and substance abuse through interviews. In another research expedition, the researchers took some time out to visit certain localities so as to have an observation of what they had obtained during the interviews. So as to produce an all rounded research paper, the researchers also sort some information from medics and psychiatrists on the number of patients with the problem of addiction (Doumas et al., 2011). In the research conducted by Justice Policy Institute (Substance abuse and treatment), several data collection methods were deployed to obtain the data for his paper. In the first bit, the author considers some records, which reveal that the levels of drug use in America have surpassed all other countries. In the records, the author was able to come up with several pieces of information to help relate drug abuse and crime rates. This piece of information was obtained from the homeland security records (Guerrero, 2010).
Another source of information used by the author is magazines, where he was able to find several articles relating to addiction and treatment in Maryland, an article, which he uses to catch attention from the readers (Academy for Educational Development with funding from CDC, 2001).
In the third research, the author uses secondary data sources, which include records from correctional facilities. The author also uses records from addiction treatment department and the justice department. These methods enable researcher to gather enough information, which he uses to come up with the article scenario (Justice Policy Institute, 2008).
Results and Discussion
From the secondary sources like magazines and newspapers, the authors were able to deduce that the levels of drug alcohol use were widespread across the whole age spectrum. However, the lowest levels of addition were recorded among the elementary scholars and the highest levels among the people in the age between 18 and 30 years (National Clearing House for Alcohol and Drug Information, 2001).
Another feature that caused alarm was the rate of entry into drug use levels. The highest rates were among the elementary scholars, mostly in junior high school. The research also revealed that the rates were comparably equal for both boys and girls. This opposed the earlier notion that boys were the more susceptible to drug and substance abuse than girls.
Another feature that was evident was that girls were mostly introduced into drug use by poverty. This was not the case for boys since most engaged in drug abuse due to peer pressure and influence. Across the whole age spectrum, the most abused drug was alcohol. This can be attributed to the fact that alcohol is not illegal in most countries. The levels of other narcotics use were also relatively high considering the fact that they are illegal (National Clearinghouse for Alcohol and Drug Information, 2001).
From the interview, it was revealed that the addicts were trying their level best to quit the tread to no avail. This was attributed to influence among friends, lack of money to take care of some drugs, which may be required in some treatment, poverty hindering the addicts from finding other means to cater for their needs, hire a psychiatrist, or undergo counseling as a form of the healing process (Hiller et al., 2011).
However, in order to treat this problem, the author refers to several medical procedures as well as social procedures. Considering medical procedure, addiction affects brain operation and CNS coordination. This means that the addicts have to be put on some counter effect drugs to try and correct the impaired operations. After this, the most crucial aspect according to the author is social treatment. Addicts fear to mingle with the others. In order to help heal these people, the author proposes some ways in which families, the society, and the counselors may help ease the life of the addicts and gradually assimilate them back to normal life out of drugs (Hiller et al., 2011).
From the federal records on research on substance abuse and treatment, there exists a higher correlation between the levels of drug abuse and crime rates. In the records, states like Los Angeles have very high levels of crime rates. In particular, looking at levels of drug use as well, the levels are very high. A practical example is Las Vegas. In this city, insecurity levels are very high compared to cities like Chicago. Looking at the rates of drug abuse, Las Vegas also records high levels compared to Chicago. The main correlation chips are due to the fact that drug users are less productive to cater for all their needs. With the increased urge to be always on the drug due to addiction, the drug offenders turn to crime to acquire money to meet their addiction needs. The users are also unable to secure any form of employment making the unemployment ration to increase. As dependence increases, poverty sets in forcing these addicts into crime (Academy for Educational Development with funding from CDC, 2001).
From the same records, some data obtained is used to show the importance of treatment before imprisonment or as a way of reducing the number of convicts and overcrowding in the jail facilities. Some of the proposed findings in this article are discussed briefly below.
- Increased addict treatments cause a reduction in crime rates. This was observed in Maryland after a jail facility tried to divert addicts from imprisonment into addiction treatment. This worked perfect when the government spent more in addict treatment programs and consequently a drop in crime rates was recorded. Over a period of ten years (1995 - 2005), the government in Maryland recorded an increase in addict treatment by 37,5% and a consequential drop in crime rate of 31,05% over the same duration of time.
- Increased addict treatments causes a reduction in jail population. As earlier postulated that more than a third of inmates in American jail facilities are convicted on drug related crimes. Diverting these criminals from jail terms into getting proper addiction treatment can greatly reduce the population in jail facilities. This will in turn reduce congestion related issues like stampedes if an emergency occurs in such a facility (Guerrero, 2010).
- Substance addiction treatment prior to contact with justice system yields public benefits to all. This point illustrates the importance of public campaigns and acceptance of addicts to undergo treatment before getting into jail over drug related crimes. This acts as a public way of demoralizing drug and substance abuse to the other people. It also creates cohesion among the diverse society enabling them to work as a unit to eradicate drug abuse and facilitate treatment of the already addicted.
As earlier stipulated in the introduction third article, the author states that more than 80% of the inmates in American correctional facilities have drug abuse related problems. With such a high number of drug addicts, the author states that the country has to come up with an alternative way of dealing with addiction apart from imprisonment. This is what drives the author into looking briefly into the different factors affecting addiction treatments, which are also discussed below (Justice Policy Institute, 2008).
Some of the factors favoring addiction treatment include:
- This treatment can help reduce disease and crime rates. The bit on crime is as discussed in the prior article. The other bit is disease spread. Most of the drug addicts have little or no money to purchase syringes and needles thus share. This has led to increase in spread of diseases like HIV/AIDS, which can be transmitted by samples of blood. By increasing treatment, the number of addicts reduce hence the sharing of these injecting facilities reduce. This consequently reduces the rate of disease infection.
- Treatment can help mend broken families and societies. A drug addict usually pulls away from the society. This also happens with family members making the addict to break from the family. Treating such a person makes him/her realize the need of others in the society and family thus gradually falls back to his/her family.
With this in mind, several treatment procedures are available in the justice system. These include:
- Detoxification. This involves treatment of the addict using a drug with a counter effect to the one used by the addict. This makes the addict’s blood to be detoxicated. As a possible outcome, the addict may develop some changes in moods (withdrawal effects), which may also call for the detoxification process (Masson et al., 2012).
- Self-help groups. This is an initiative whereby the addicts are treated as a unit and asked to continue working in that group to help reclaim more from addiction. With an addict seeing a former addict healed, it is possible for that addict to have hope in getting better as well thus enroll in the treatment process (Masson et al., 2012).
- Education and counseling. From a statistical perspective, most of the drug addicts drop out of schools due to the effects of the drugs. As a result, they have less productive skills, which may render them jobless making them turn to crime. Consequently, the justice system has come up with inmate education system to facilitate education to these people. On top of education, the system has also introduced counseling sessions, which enlighten the inmates on dangers of drug addiction. This also leads to psychotherapy of the addicts as a form of treatment (Booth, Curran, Han, & Edlund, 2012).
From a statistical approach, the data obtained from the interview can be plotted on a regression table. This will help to summarize the whole research and ease the data presentation. Pie charts may also be plotted to help compare the levels of addiction among different age sets in the present and the past. This will help depict other features like the age set with the highest rates of addiction and entry into drug use as well as the age set most prone to addiction. Regression model cannot, however, show the extent to which variables such as age, gender and peer groups influence drug abuse. Other statistical measures such as coefficient of correlation could be better in this case.
In the second article, data is analyzed in tables and bar graphs. This facilitates generalization making it possible for a person to easily make comparison and draw conclusion. This also makes it simple to understand the data in a summary hence better information depiction (Kurtz, Surratt, Buttram, Levi-Minzi, & Chen, 2010). In the third article, the author embarks a lot on the use of tables to compare data. This makes it possible for the author to present a summary of the main information in an appealing manner. It ignores other statistical measures that can predict relationship between drug addiction and other cause variables. Statistical tools such as coefficient of correlation can better show relationship between drug addiction and variables under study.
Treatment of addiction is a collective duty that all the people in the society are stakeholders. This means that each and every person has a role to play to ensure that the people addicted to drugs heal from addiction and unless this is done collectively, it cannot be a success. On the applicability of this article to my thesis, the article explains more on some facts that are often overlooked by the society. The article explains how addiction treatment is a collective process not personal obligation (Quanbeck et al., 2012)
The second article bases its main argument on the fact that addiction treatment is the best solution to addicts. Imprisonment creates seclusion and emotional detachment from the society, which is a major hindrance in treatment. Therefore, the article campaigns for an alternative treatment protocol instead of imprisonment to such offenders (Kurtz, Surratt, Buttram, Levi-Minzi, & Chen, 2010). The last article brings out the aspect of treatment in the justice system. This comes as a way to oppose the already conceived judgment that correctional facilities are used only for correction without treatment.
Inclusion of this article in this paper brings in the aspect of addiction treatment in the correctional facilities, an aspect not covered in any other article of the paper. The article also connects with other articles in the paper indicating a smooth flow and interrelation in addiction treatment (Booth, Curran, Han, & Edlund, 2012).