When facing criminal charges, things can become overly stressful. What's the best way to go about proceeding? Here, you'll find a little information to help you get through this very stressful time with the least amount of anxiety possible.

Hire a Criminal Defense Lawyer

So many people make the mistake of heading to court without any lawyer at their side. You don't know how the criminal justice system works — a lawyer does. Look for a lawyer that is experienced with cases similar to your charges. There are different types of lawyers that handle different types of legal situations — you will need a criminal defense lawyer.

Seek Treatment

If your criminal charges include any type of drug charge, seek treatment as soon as possible. Even if you just begin attending AA or NA meetings, it will look better when you go to court, and it could help you beat the addiction and snuff the habit out for good. Chances are, if the charges include drug charges, you'll be required to attend some sort of treatment anyway, so why not get it done before your hearing so you can show the judge that you are serious about making positive changes in your life?

Court Appearance

As your court date approaches, you'll need to begin planning. You need to know what and who you should bring with you. You need to know what to wear and how to groom yourself. You need to know where to go and how early you'll need to arrive. Generally speaking, it's best to have at least one loved one sitting behind you in court. This shows the judge that you do have a support system in place to help you improve your choices in life.

As you choose your outfit for the hearing, dress professionally. A nice pair of dress pants, a long skirt and a clean, button-down shirt, blouse or sweater will do nicely. You want to appear as if you are an upstanding member of society. Make sure that you know exactly where you'll need to go for your hearing, where you'll be able to park, and how much time you'll need to get through security. The worst thing you can do, other than skipping the court date entirely, is to show up late. Plan accordingly.

Talk with your criminal defense lawyer to learn more about what you can do to improve your chances of leniency or being found innocent.