How to Get Over a Drug Addiction

Face yourself and your addiction. There's hope, but it rests on how serious you are about being healthy.


Up next in Addiction & Substance Abuse (13 videos)

Learn about addiction in this Howcast video series, which includes advice for shopaholics, porn addicts, sex addicts, compulsive gamblers, hoarders, overeaters, and other people with harmful dependencies.

You Will Need

  • Emergency care
  • Detox drugs
  • Doctor
  • Other addicts
  • Outpatient therapy
  • Counseling


  1. Once you've admitted you have a problem, seek immediate and ongoing professional medical attention.

  2. Step 1

    Get emergency care

    Enter a clinic or emergency detox facility to receive immediate and consistent inpatient care to stop your drug abuse and avoid committing slow suicide.

  3. Step 2

    Undergo detoxification

    Undergo detox under a doctor's supervision to withdraw safely. Through stepped-down doses of other substances with less severe side effects, you can get clean without relapsing.

  4. Step 3

    Ask for help from others

    Ask for help from friends or family members who have suffered addictions. Use their experiences and advice rather than trusting your own judgment, which is liable to be skewed and unreliable.

  5. Don't buy into the myth that this has to be done alone or that you are weak if you need help. This is the kind of thinking that enables drug abuse in the first place.

  6. Step 4

    Attend outpatient therapy

    Attend outpatient therapy sessions to prevent relapse. Build a new and healthier network of friends and recovering people who can relate to you and who will support you.

  7. Step 5

    Start counseling

    Start individual or family counseling with a drug rehabilitation specialist to get help developing coping skills and alternative behaviors. Work on communicating better with loved ones.

  8. Accept that some family members or friends may have their own problems or addictions and are not ready or able to help.

  9. Step 6

    Make recovery your first priority

    Conquer your problem first. Make recovery a priority. An unhealthy and self-destructive person cannot love anyone else before they learn to love themselves.

  10. Step 7

    Request information on groups

    Request information from a doctor regarding a 12 step support group meeting in your area. Join the group, and attend sessions every day to face and conquer your chronic disorder.

  11. Illicit drug use in the United States among people in their 50s increased almost 75% from 2002 to 2008.