Online Addiction Counseling and Treatments in Covid Times

Addiction or substance dependence is difficult to cope with. It obviously generates a negative impact in multiple areas of an addicted person’s life. The same could be said about the ongoing COVID-19, Covid, or coronavirus pandemic around the world.

Every time lockdown happens in a city, region, state, province, or country, it becomes tougher for a substance abuse patient to find help when it comes to overcoming their sobriety issues.

They can’t get out of their homes and they might O.D. in there depending on their stash or supply of illicit drugs or alcohol.

Key Takeaways of the COVID-19 Pandemic

COVID-19 has inconvenienced many but may have downright tortured others, especially those who are indigent, sick with diseases other than Covid, and addicted to substances like alcohol and drugs.

  • No In-Person Rehab Possible: Being at home with no access to in-person services is outright punishing for the addicted. Such circumstances are creating unexpected challenges and hardships that keep them from traveling the sober route.

  • No Local Outpatient Treatment Allowed: Even going to group meetings and counseling via outpatient 12-step rehab like in Narcotics Anonymous and Alcoholics Anonymous is much tougher due to lockdown requirements of staying mostly at home.

  • Pandemic Stressors: More and more people turn to the bottle or take drugs in order to cope with stressors such as social isolation and unemployment, with them spending their saved money on vices and whatnot.

  • Relapse Fears: Those who’ve completed rehab treatment already before the lockdowns occurred (again and again) fear relapse exactly because of all the isolation, loneliness, and the stress of not having a job.

  • A Technological Solution: Technology plays a vital role in assisting patients access the rehab treatment and aftercare they need to keep being sober and avoid relapsing to self-destructive habits.

Treatments Available in Covid Times

Here’s a list of methods that rehab centers all over the world have used in order to deal with the worldwide Covid pandemic and local lockdowns.

Rehab Methods During the Covid Pandemic Description of These Methods for Dealing with Addiction Rehab in Light of COVID-19
Treatment via Online Communication Technologies like Zoom or Skype meetings online hotlines, phone, and email can help tremendously in getting in touch with your behavioral therapist, doctor, psychiatrist, and counselor for treatment.

It’s not as effective as in-person meetings but like with home-based jobs, your rehab center of choice can maximize its effectiveness to accommodate your needs.

Covid-Specific Online Counseling Dual diagnosis typically covers mental health issues like depression, post-traumatic stress disorder, and anxiety. Your online rehab can also cover Covid-specific issues.

The rehab doctor will keep tabs on you taking your vaccine and how to deal with the infamous “New Normal” we’ve been experiencing since 2020 along with addiction rehab.

The Nearest Sober Living Houses or Outpatient Treatments If you can find a Sober Living House (SLH) in your locality or you’ve been granted passage to one from far away via a vaccine card, you can stay there for treatment.

SLHs mostly cover social activities and help you get new hobbies to prevent relapse with your old vices. However, they can also serve as your closest substitute to inpatient rehab.

Ditto with outpatient 12-step treatments, but those are better done in Zoom form, especially with how erratic lockdowns can get.

Vaccine Passports to Allow for Overseas Luxury Rehab Once you’ve completed getting vaccinated and after your country or government has smoothened out vaccine passports, you can now go overseas for rehab.

The seclusion in those rehab centers will keep you isolated during lockdown while undergoing meticulous treatment with monitoring and (vaccinated) experts on hand.

The vaccinated are more likely to mingle safely with a small population of addiction patients undergoing rehab in places like Thailand.

How Rehab Centers All Over The World and Patients Are Coping

There are many extra issues and complications to watch out for when trying to undergo rehab during this global Covid pandemic. There are also a few benefits or silver linings to it when push comes to shove.

  • Obvious Challenges: The main challenge of the COVID-19 pandemic is that it’s harder for patients to go to 24/7 inpatient addiction rehab facilities, especially those located overseas like Miracles Asia in Thailand.

  • The Silver Lining: The isolation is a blessing in disguise in that the drug addicted folk are less likely to meet up with their drug suppliers due to lockdowns. However, it’s probably horrifying to deal with their addiction cold turkey.

  • A Blessing in Disguise: Thanks to technology though, it’s become more important for the substance-dependent to reach out and seek help through online means. Social media was seen as a curse, but online communication in this instance could be a blessing in disguise.

How Added Stressors Can Trigger Relapse

Addiction is a disease of isolation. In light of everyone being forced to isolate, your addiction worsening could become as likely a side effect as you gaining weight due to lack of exercise while staying at home due to lockdown.

  • Stress: Stress is a problem among addicts in lockdown because isolation tends to result in a toll on your mental health illness symptoms. It’s stressful to be alone but you have no choice due to social isolation protocols required to manage viral spread.

  • Unemployment: Another stress-inducing consequence of the lockdowns is unemployment, which then leads to financial hardships. It’s already expensive enough to find affordable rehab. However, isolated folk have a tough time getting a new job in this New Normal of a pandemic.

  • Social Isolation: Your relapse can also be triggered by social isolation itself. If you’re locked down with friends, family, your partner, or the like then it’d be easier on you. However, what if you’re isolated in your lonesome? What if you’re pushed to the brink by boredom or the stress of loneliness?

Humans Are Amazing at Adapting to Any Circumstances

While addicts seem to contradict the belief that humans are quite adaptable to change seeing how many of them find it hard to kick their repetitive addicts, it’s important to not underestimate the human spirit.

  • A Matter of Willpower: If your addiction compulsion is pushing you to brave the streets of maskless people and anti-vaxxers who’ve politicized this health crisis and helped spread the Delta variant of Covid, then surely the same willpower can push you towards online rehab.

  • Adapting Addiction Treatment in the Covid Era: Change is difficult but not impossible. Addiction patients should realize that even the most susceptible of them didn’t develop their drug addiction or alcoholism overnight. It’s the same with Covid Era rehab.

  • The New Normal: Many rehab centers in the globe like The Priory Group have adapted their addiction treatment of patients even while facing the coronavirus outbreak. In turn, many people have swimmingly adjusted to the New Normal by necessity at only a few months’ to a year’s time.

  • Everything is Mostly Online Now: School is now done in Zoom meetings. Ditto work, with people now mostly working at home while a skeletal crew handles in-person work. The same kind of deal has happened when doing rehab for alcoholics and drug addicts.

The New Normal of Alcoholism and Drug Addiction Rehab

There’s also a new normal when it comes to rehabbing people with drug and alcohol addiction. The solution is obvious—they’re using the Internet more and more. They’re chatting with video conferencing tech like Zoom, Skype, or even Discord.

  • Addiction Doesn’t Suddenly Go Away with the Pandemic: Over 20 million adults 18 years of age and older have substance use disorder in the world. They depend mostly on individual therapy, outpatient support meetings, and rehab treatment centers to overcome their drug dependency, Covid or no Covid.

  • Rehab Access Is Limited: To make up for limited in-person rehab access, Zoom or Skype meetings became the order of the day the same way many companies require such meetings to conduct their own business in the Covid Era or the New Normal.

  • The Internet is the Obvious Solution: The Internet has seemingly been designed specifically for situations like this. The military originally developed the Internet to allow for communication to continue even when communication lines or posts are taken down. This is perfect for Covid Era rehab.

  • Remote Access Addiction Support: The addiction treatment teams of Miracles Asia and the like have been working nonstop and experimenting on the best solutions required for adapting their rehab practices in a safe way that provides addiction support to patients remotely.

The Concept of TeleHealth

It took a bit of experimentation all throughout 2020 to see what works and what doesn’t, but rehab centers adapted and developed what is now known as TeleHealth or phone-based consultations done online or on the phone.

  • Modern Pandemics Require Modern Solutions: TeleHealth is necessary because it keeps the spread of COVID-19 (which has currently mutated enough to have a Delta variant that’s capable of worsening quickly or affecting children instead of just seniors) under control.

  • How Well Do These Consultations Work? Admittedly, the personal touch of rehab is different compared to online consultations. However, they’re serviceable solutions that allow counselors and therapists to keep tabs with addiction patients and give immediate advice.

  • The Seclusion Can Actually Help: The seclusion of lockdowns can trigger previous disorders or relapse for sure. However, through therapy, consultation sessions, and developing self-awareness, the patient should realize that this seclusion is similar to what he’d experience in an inpatient rehab facility.

  • Resources Available on the Net: The good news is that online rehab also gives patients access to multiple resources available to them on the net that assist in their recovery. The difference between using Google to get such resources is that they can depend on experts to curate the knowledge they need to gain sobriety.

How People are Accessing Treatment and Getting Support

People who need higher levels of care for their addiction issues, such as residential treatment or medical detox, might have a difficult time due to geographical location and ambulances and hospitals prioritizing those afflicted by the coronavirus.

Long story short, you can continue to get help while waiting for the social distancing orders to be lifted.

  • Emergency Care: On that note, you can always avail of emergency services when push comes to shove. Before the delta variant cases started growing again, many people under lockdown were able to get emergency hospice care and the detoxification they needed.

  • Helplines and Hotlines: If you’re availing outpatient support like the 12-step program, you can get such services through online communication as well. You can avail of local hotline and helplines even during the pandemic and amidst lockdowns. They’re available nationally, locally, and virtually.

  • A Support Group Online: It’s also crucial to stay virtually connected with a support group such as a supportive family or tight-knit friend circle as much as you possibly can. Online counseling is great, but these counselors are ultimately strangers. Your loved ones know you better.

  • Virtualized Rehab: To assist in recovery efforts and facilitating treatment, many treatment centers, organizations, and support groups have shifted towards a more virtual paradigm of providing rehab services when push comes to shove. This is mostly done on Zoom video chats and phone conference calls.

Vaccine Passports to Allow for Overseas Luxury Rehab

The details behind vaccine passports are still being smoothened out, but the gist of it is that it’s possible for the addiction patient to travel overseas and get their secluded luxury or budget rehab treatment in places like Thailand as long as they’re Covid vaccinated.

  • Tourism Sandbox Program: With that said, different countries require specific approved vaccines before you’re allowed in their shores. For example, if you were to avail of rehab tourism treatment at Phuket rehab centers, you need to enter the Tourism Sandbox Program.

  • Approved Vaccines Only: The entrants of the program must be fully vaccinated with registered vaccines recognized by the Thailand Food and Drug Administration (FDA) as well as vaccines that are approved by the World Health Organization (WHO).

    So far, Phuket is the only designated province for the program as of June 29, 2021. Regardless, here are the vaccines approved by the FDA in Thailand.

  • Sinovac

  • Moderna

  • Sinopharm

  • AstraZeneca

  • Pfizer-BioNTech

  • Johnson & Johnson

Addiction and Recovery Resources Available Online

Lockdowns and social distancing as well as overcrowded or overcapacity hospitals are certainly huge blockades or hindrances in order to get proper rehab treatment, thus you’ll need to figure out your priorities.

  • Establish Your Priorities: Is it dangerous for you to go cold turkey? Call emergency services to get medical detox ASAP or as much as available rehab centers or hospitals could allow in your area. Is it a matter of outpatient treatment like a 12-step program? It’s time to call an online service.

  • Go to Online Forums: In light of the New Normal’s challenges when it comes to accessing services, many treatment centers, support groups, addiction experts, therapists, and rehab organizations have moved to online forums and Zoom calls (videoconferencing) to continue providing care and instructions.

  • Virtual Individual and Group Therapy: Rehab centers in your area or beyond are also enabling therapists long-distance individual counseling, family counseling, and couples counseling on top of addiction counseling that are all done on the Worldwide Web for everyone’s individual convenience.

  • Self-Help Online Resources: On top of podcasts and video recovery meetings you can attend and interact with, you can also go the self-help route. With the guidance of a trained professional, you can be given e-books, websites, blogs, and articles that give you a wealth of information on how to overcome your addiction.

How to Transition From In-Person to Online Therapy During Coronavirus

Dealing with rehab in the middle of observing COVID-19 safety protocols is a juggling or balancing act. It’s about finding ways to treat your illness while keeping you safe from another pandemic-level threat. To wit:

  • In response to stay-at-home orders, social distance protocols, and the COVID-19 pandemic, the American Society of Addiction Medicine has released clinical guidance and resources.

  • These ASAM guidelines should help you and your caregivers know how to properly access the addiction medicine in light of all these lockdown and quarantine protocols.

  • If you want to learn what works and what doesn’t, you can avail of the online services of rehab centers like Miracles Asia in Thailand or somewhere in your locality.

  • This way, you can find the schedule to get vaccinated and a vaccine passport, which should then give you an opportunity to fly abroad for luxury rehab treatment in places like Phuket.

  • Or you can transition from online therapy via local rehab services that have all gone online themselves along with their patients. Call now.

  • Otherwise, you’ll be instructed to call emergency services to deal with detox and withdrawal symptoms management if you’re dangerously dependent on drugs or alcohol.

The Benefits of Online Rehab

Thanks to the Internet, you can get individual counseling for 12-step programs or individualized rehab therapy through the Internet. You can also be coached on what to do with substance use disorder.

Unfortunately, people are currently living in troubling times where most of the work falls on the shoulders of people who are themselves struggling. Therefore, anyone affected by addiction is usually left to figure out their next step without falling victim to relapse.

Get Help Now! Go to Miracles Asia Rehab Virtually or In-Person!

Local online therapy by video call, phone call, hotline, or email are all available for use in order to contact the world-renowned Miracles Asia Rehab even before the Covid epidemic started.

It’s just used more now for main treatment instead of just a means for keeping tabs with patients who’ve completed the course and are undergoing aftercare already. With that said, Miracles Asia still has a 98 percent completion rate under their belt for good reason.

This rehab center knows how to adapt to the needs of the patient even in the face of the COVID-19 pandemic, among many other circumstances beyond anyone’s control.