According to Mental Health America, many symptoms of drug abuse exist, including frequent use, tolerance to the effects of the drug and psychological dependence. Most treatment programs are geared toward abstinence from the substance and participation in counseling or recovery support groups. Experts at the National Institute on Drug Abuse note that individuals who are attempting to cut back or stop the frequent use or abuse of a substance should consult with doctors and mental health professionals to make a concrete plan that will best serve their needs.
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Consult with medical professionals regarding a plan to quit smoking. According to the National Institute on Drug Abuse, many individuals with substance abuse issues can benefit from a consultation with a doctor and mental health professional prior to quitting. Medical professionals may recommend the use of certain medications if the individual shows mental health symptoms and if the drugs can help an individual create an effective, personalized plan for quitting and managing withdrawal symptoms.
Develop a plan to quit, including a specific date to stop use, and a daily plan to abstain from use. The National Institute on Drug Abuse notes that plans should consider many facets of a person's lifestyle, including stress management and how the individual can make changes that will support a drug-free lifestyle. Changes may include choosing new activities, avoiding specific locations or people, and attending support group meetings or individual counseling.
Share the plan with family and friends. The National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism notes that support from loved-ones and friends can be critical to abstinence. Communicate directly with people about the specific plan for abstinence and important roles they can play in the plan. Being honest about the problem and the possible solutions will allow others to support the plan during difficult days.
Develop an identity beyond the drug use. Experts at Mental Health America note that people who cut back or quit using a substance often have increased time and improved health because they are sober more often. Once an individual has maintained abstinence from the drug, he can consider engaging in new activities such as academic courses, hobbies or sports. Selecting at least one new endeavor often builds self-esteem and allows an individual to build new skill sets.