Anybody who is struggling with an addiction to drugs or alcohol knows how hard it can be to overcome it on their own.
The healing environment of a rehabilitation centre offers the support needed for quick successful recovery.
Creating rehabs in learning institutions will help to accelerate recovery since those who are affected won’t feel neglected and isolated from their families and friends.
Instead, they will be motivated by seeing their friends transforming and leading better lives and, hence, have a greater impact on their own recovery.
Drug and substance abuse among the youth is problematic for several reasons.
When young people begin or carry on with experimenting with drugs in order to fit in or gain friends, they could unknowingly set themselves up for potentially life-threating habits, making prevention critical.
Providing a firm foundation and clear ideas on the damage addiction can cause is critical to prevention efforts.
The problem can be dealt with during early days, when the victims have just started abusing the drug or substance. These are especially high school days but also in the institutions of higher learning.
Rehabs can help to prevent or repair addiction by implementing preventive measures such as involving parents in talks during school meetings, where parents are free to talk to their children about the consequences of drug abuse.
Specifically, talking to the children while young helps to create a foundation for a wider awareness on drug abuse.
They also involve educational tools, government agencies, community leaders and school personnel in teaching children about living a drug-free life.
The programmes can be universal, teaching social, personal and drug techniques on a regular basis or selective and even indicated programmes.
Rehabs can also help through detoxification programmes, diagnosis and cognitive therapies to help the patients realise which life situations are most likely to trigger them to substance abuse.
They can also use medication. This helps in preventing the expensive treatment cost that may rise due to addiction.
Furthermore, with rehabs in institutions of learning, students won’t feel that their privacy is infringed upon as some of the therapists could be their friendly teachers, whom they trust.
They can also be a safe haven from the daily struggles of addiction, emotional and personal problems.
It is also like a refuge, a place where they find caring support since they are not alone in the struggle but have their friends and peers.
Rehabs continue to support patients even after they leave the facility. The student can be given client tools to help them engage in abstinence and recovery on long-term basis, including an aftercare programme.
That can help in ending drug and substance abuse in society.
JAGANYI AMOS, Siaya