Drug Addiction Treatment: What You Need To Know


Drug Addiction Treatment

Drug addiction treatment is never an overnight fix. Many people are not ready to admit, or are sometimes even unaware, that they have a substance use disorder. This makes treatment and recovery a real challenge.

Drug addiction often starts very innocently with experimentation. You may have tried a substance out of curiosity or due to peer pressure. You might feel that the drugs solve a problem you are experiencing, like anxiety, stress, or even boredom. However, why someone started using drugs is not that important. It is where the drug use has ended that is relevant. 

Seeking drug addiction rehab in Cape Town is the first step on the recovery journey. To do this, you need to understand drug addiction, the symptoms, and the possible treatments.

Understanding Drug Addiction

What is drug addiction?

Addiction is characterised by the repeated, compulsive use of mood altering substances such as drugs or alcohol, despite the negative consequences that arise from the use.

It becomes a vicious circle. In terms of drug addiction, there are three broad groups of substances that are abused – depressants, stimulants, and hallucinogens. A substance use disorder is always accompanied by changes in mental, physical and spiritual health, as users become increasingly hopeless, desperate and reckless.

Using these substances eventually leads to a chronic dependence, which has serious effects on your psychological and physical health. If you are not sure that you need drug addiction help, there are some behaviours you can look out for:

  • Lying to hide behaviours or substance use
  • Manipulating those around you to make them believe that everything is under control
  • Unpredictable mood changes from one extreme to another, especially when drugs are unavailable
  • Loss of interest in hobbies, family life or other responsibilities
  • Isolating yourself from others to partake in substance use
Recognise Symptoms

Drug Addiction Symptoms

We understand that different types of drugs have different symptoms, which can be difficult to notice if you are not aware of what they are. Some of the common symptoms of the different types of drugs include the following:

The Depressants Group:

Depressants are substances that lower the neurotransmitters in the brain, leading to the reduction of thought and activity. Common depressants include:

  • Codeine (often used in cough syrups and pain medicines)
  • Heroin
  • Sleeping Pills and Tranquilisers
  • Mandrax or “buttons”

The symptoms associated with depressant substance use disorder include small pupils, bruises on the body where needles have been used, an unnaturally calm mood, drowsiness or lethargy, and personality changes.


The Stimulants Group:

As the name suggests, stimulants are substances which stimulate the neurotransmitters in the brain and boost activity levels. They often provide an invigorating feeling, and include the following substances:

  • Crystal Methamphetamine “tik”
  • Amphetamines
  • Cocaine and “crack” cocaine
  • Caffeine 
  • Ritalin

The symptoms of stimulants include hyperactive, erratic behaviour, unnatural euphoria, nervousness, argumentativeness, body twitches, and aggression.


Hallucinogens can be natural or man-made drugs and at our drug addiction rehab in Cape Town, we specialise in treating this specific substance use disorder.  They distort the normal functions of the central nervous system and hallucinations, and include the following substances:

  • Cannabis
  • MDMA or ecstacy
  • LSD, or “acid”
  • Psilocybin, or “magic mushrooms”

After taking a hallucinogen, users will experience a degree of hallucinations, paranoia, emotional instability, disturbed thoughts, and distorted vision. It can mimic a psychotic disorder.

Treatment Options

Drug Addiction Treatment

Treating the patient as a whole, rather than only addressing the addiction, is the best way to treat the disorder. Substance use disorders are often associated with underlying issues, like childhood trauma.

Inpatient Drug Addiction Treatment

Inpatient drug addiction treatment, such as that offered by Tharagay Manor, is where a person is admitted for inpatient care. This facility specialises in the treatment of addictive disorders and associated psychosocial problems.

You will take part in group and one-on-one counselling, detoxifying from the substance if necessary, as well as partaking in an interesting programme designed to provide you with all the information to sustain sobriety and recovery.

Halfway House Programme

A halfway house like Tharagay House can be used in conjunction with a primary treatment facility, or on its own.

In this facility, those who need residential care while recovering from their drug addiction can continue their journey and minimse the risk of relapse. In addition, there are group counselling sessions as well as family sessions.

Sober Living Facility

A sober living facility such as Tharagay Place is a safe accommodation for those who need a place to continue their rehabilitation in a supportive environment.

It is designed to encourage and guide residents to find a productive, healthy and balanced lifestyle and prevent the risk of relapse.

Deeper Understanding

Reclaim Your Happiness

Suffering from a drug addiction not only affects your life, but the lives of those around you. With the right help and drug addiction treatment, you will be able to reclaim your happiness and your life. 

With the help of Tharagay, you can gain a deeper understanding of your own addiction and prevent the risk of relapse.