A drug or alcohol intervention is an effort by one or more people to get someone into treatment. Oftentimes when an intervention is done, the result is that the addicted person decides to get help for him or herself. Unfortunately, there are also other times that the addicted person does not decide to get help. This can create a huge loss for the family and friends who have attempted to get this person help.

There are several steps that can be taken to ensure that a drug intervention is successful:

1. Get all the information you can about addiction and treatment – Being educated on substance abuse, the types of and results of treatment can put you a step ahead when orchestrating a drug or alcohol intervention. Knowing why a person becomes addicted, the symptoms of withdrawal and addiction as well as what ways an addict may respond when confronted by a family or friends is key in being able to handle the individual to get them help.

2. Have rehabilitation sources ready – After doing research it is important to secure a bed at a rehabilitation center right away. Once the intervention is done the individual should go directly into treatment. Allowing a day or even a few hours to ‘hunt for the right program’ can be just enough time for the individual to change his mind about going to treatment.

3. Have the individual’s things ready for treatment – In addition to having a treatment program lined up for the person it is key to have all of the addict’s things ready to go into a program. This can include clothing, toiletry items and personal belongings. If the addict is allowed time to put these things together this can also cause him or her to change their minds.

4. Have a specific plan – Whether you’re hiring a professional interventionist or doing a family intervention it is important to list out what you would like to cover. Many rehabilitation specialists will offer the advice of not making the addict wrong about his or her present or past misdeeds, but offering help and support with the treatment process.

5. Don’t waiver or enable – One of the biggest barriers to drug intervention can be a family member or friend that enables or allows the addict to put off treatment. Many do this hoping the person will just get better or that the addiction will just go away without help. Without treatment, an addiction will continue to get worse. Giving the individual time to think about going to a program, a place to stay, money or paying their bills only makes the situation worse.

The National Institute on Drug Abuse reports that an average of 1.8 million people enroll in a treatment program every year. This is only a small percentage of the 23 million people currently addicted to drugs. A drug intervention can be key in getting an individual the help they need.