Different countries around the world have different ideologies and methods of tackling drug addiction. In most developed countries, including the USA, they aim for users to achieve complete abstinence from all drugs. In other countries, such as in Europe, drug addiction is more complex; claiming the situation as a problem particularly when it only interferes with the individuals day to day activities. However, most countries agree that shifting a drug addict totally away from drugs, to total abstinence, is the best outcome.

When a drug addict decides to receive help and want to begin treatment, they have the option of undergoing residential treatment. With this it is often found to be divided into two choices; therapeutic treatment or 12 step programs. For 12 step programs, the majority are recognised as a faith-based, non clinical approach to help with recovery.

With regular therapy programs, often they use cognitive-behavioural approaches. This interprets drug addiction as behaviour rather than a 'disease'; determining the root cause of such maladaptive behaviour.

It is commonplace for psychiatrists to prescribe a drug addict with medication to help them steer clear away from their addiction; whilst helping to ease symptoms. Such prescriptions can help with anxiety and insomnia; typical side effects of withdrawal.

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