When someone you love or care about is struggling with addiction, it is instinctual to want to help them. Sometimes, any efforts made to help them are futile, because individuals who are addicted to drugs or alcohol have either lost all hope or are in denial. Individuals may refuse help for example if they have gone to drug rehab before but relapsed soon after leaving treatment, or didn't find any resolution to their addiction at all in that particular rehab program. There are of course instances where addicted individuals will avoid all confrontation on the matter and deny there is a problem, which can make it very difficult to convince someone to get treatment. If someone is in denial and truly believe they don't have an addiction issue or have convinced themselves they can control and stop whenever they want, any efforts made to help them are of course going to fail. However, if friends and loved ones don't intervene in situations where addiction is an obvious issue, the consequences will be devastating. At this point, an actual intervention will be necessary and essential to help addicted individuals get the treatment they need so they don't lose their lives or destroy their lives any further.
The difference between an intervention and a casual confrontation is the method by which the individual is confronted. An intervention isn't just about telling a person that they have a drug or alcohol problem and making them feel bad enough about it so they will get help. As many friends and loved ones can tell you, this simply does not work. Making someone feel guilty about their addiction can actually produce completely opposite results, and push them farther and farther away so that they may never get help. Even someone in deep denial feels the shame of their actions, and individuals with such deep guilt don't need any help reaffirming this. Doing so sometimes makes addicted individuals want to use drugs or alcohol even more, to numb these feelings that are so difficult to bear.
An intervention is a well orchestrated forum of truth, not one to place blame or guilt or one which makes the individual feel attacked. Rather, it is an opportunity for people that truly care about the addicted individual to communicate the reality of how drugs and alcohol have affected their life and relationships, but that something can be done to make everything better if they choose to accept the help offered at the intervention. While an intervention can be confrontational and emotional, the emphasis is put on the solution. This avoids the blame and guilt trip that would occur otherwise, and focuses more on the positive things that can happen if the individual makes the right choice to go to drug rehab.
So if other efforts have failed, then yes, an intervention is necessary. The first step that friends and family can take immediately is to choose a drug rehab program which is suitable for the individual in terms of their drug history and level of dependency. This is a very important step, because choosing a program that isn't going to provide the appropriate type or level of treatment for long enough will make all intervention efforts done in vain. Individuals who require an intervention are typically heavily dependent to drugs or alcohol, and so will require inpatient or residential treatment for at least 90 days. So finding such a program is a good place to start. Once a suitable program has been chosen, inquire about an intervention and the possibility of soliciting the assistance of a professional interventionist. While an intervention can be held without a professional interventionist, it is recommended to have one on hand to intervene at crucial moments and to guide all participants through the process so it is a success.
Making the decision to hold an intervention can be the very best decision one can make in regards to their friend or loved one who is struggling with addiction, and could literally save their life in the end. It is also important for all of the individuals who are affected by addiction indirectly preserve their own quality of life instead of having their lives destroyed because of someone else's addiction and bad decision making. This is an added benefit of an intervention, because addicted individuals who refuse to get help as part of an intervention will no longer be aided or create any type of co-dependency as is often the case. Family and friends set down exact contingencies and bottom lines if addicted individuals refuse help, and these must be enforced to not only stop the enabling that goes hand in hand with addiction but also to put enough due pressure so that individual may in fact accept help eventually.