Support groups for addicts are a widespread way of treating addiction, not through professional intervention, but through peer support. Alcoholics Anonymous was the first support group to become an established organization, then many others followed in its footsteps with groups to support any kind of addiction, including Sex Addicts Anonymous, Narcotics Anonymous, Gamblers Anonymous and more. These grassroots organizations return power to the people to work on and recover from their addiction problems. There is not necessarily expertise in all of these groups, but there is a great deal of experience as the veteran recovered addicts guide the newly recovering addicts through the challenges of recovery.
The format for support groups is fairly traditional for any support group one may attend. The meetings are held in an affordable, designated meeting space that group members pay for together. Introductions are made so that connections can be established, then there is time for everyone to share their personal stories of their battle with addiction. This is the most raw and meaningful part of a support group meeting because everyone who speaks makes themselves vulnerable in front of others, strengthening their own resolve toward recovery and that of the others in the room as well. Group members are honored for the milestones they reach, such as six months sober or one year sober. People within the group form friendships and bonds that last a lifetime, and it is not uncommon for people to spend time together outside of group, drawing close together on many levels.
Support groups cannot replace addiction treatment for those who are in need of intensive treatment. Those who are just beginning their journey toward addiction recovery are typically in need of some professional treatment in order to change the thought and behavior patterns that are destructive to their lives. Support groups work great as an addition to professional treatment for those who are just beginning to combat their addiction problems, or they can serve very successfully as the sole treatment for a person who is becoming strong in their recovery and is falling into a rhythm with their positive mental health.
Receiving counseling for addiction is highly beneficial to a person’s mental health. When addiction is allowed to thrive, it can prove detrimental, even fatal in some cases, to a person’s life. Addiction counseling is a slow, steady process of healing through guidance from a mental health professional. Where as inpatient rehabilitation is a very concentrated form of treatment, counseling is spread out over a great deal of time and makes strong use of the communication between the client and their counselor to enable recovery. This type of treatment works well for people who are looking to supplement a more intensive form of treatment, or for people who have not become heavily consumed by their addiction.
Addiction counseling is aimed at discovering the underlying cause of the addiction problem so that it can be dealt with. Modern psychology holds that addiction has roots in mental unhealthiness, therefore the addiction cannot be quelled unless the underlying cause is treated. There are a variety of reasons a person can become an addict, including past trauma, escaping from the hardships of a mental disorder, trying to cope with the confusion of a personality disorder, grief coping or many other types of impetus. An addiction counselor will question the recovering addict to understand their thought and behavior patterns. They will create a profile on the recovering addict based on what they say about their lives, then guide them through how to change their thought and behavior patterns.
An addict who chooses counseling as their form of addiction treatment should be prepared to consider their counseling a long term commitment. Addiction is a deeply rooted psychological problem that can have dire consequences on a person’s life. There is no quick fix for it. Addiction counseling usually only takes place during a few hours in a week, therefore progress is made slowly over the course of numerous months, sometimes even years. However, it can be the perfect edge a person needs to reset their way of thinking, enabling them to care for themselves and make well informed decisions for their life.
Outpatient addiction treatment is an excellent option for people who are looking to recover from addiction. For some people, the inpatient addiction treatment model, which involves living on site inside the treatment facility and following a treatment regimen around the clock, is simply not a viable option. Sometimes a person’s work commitments, school obligations or other life circumstances do not permit a person to stop their life for addiction treatment. For these cases, especially the ones involving people who are successful at independent endeavors, outpatient addiction treatment is the answer. This treatment style allows the recovering addict to receive intensive treatment while still permitting them the time to devote to their vocations, relationships and other life obligations.
The outpatient addiction treatment model requires the individual to meet with their counselor or facilitator at a certain reoccurring time for a decided on number of days in a week in order to work on their ongoing treatment. Their time may be spent on individual counseling, group therapy and support groups, readings, workbook exercises or sessions. They have access to a range of mental health professionals and addiction network support systems. Where as inpatient addiction treatment is highly concentrated, outpatient addiction treatment is more sporadic. This makes it an excellent option for cases of addiction that are less severe, or ones that have already received inpatient addiction treatment and are looking to supplement it.
It should be emphasized that outpatient addiction treatment is best for people who are not at immediate risk because of their addiction. Outpatient addiction treatment assumes more trust in a person to be able to handle themselves in the world. Someone who is desperately struggling with their addiction and is in danger because of it should consider inpatient addiction treatment more seriously so that they can be kept securely away from the addiction that is putting them at risk. But for those who thrive in their independence and are not at immediate risk due to their addiction, outpatient addiction treatment is an intelligent, practical way of working toward recovery. All through out North America, addiction rehabs are available to struggling addicts, such as Los Angeles treatment center, New York addiction facility and Calgary rehab center of Canada.
The addiction treatment option that is statistically the most successful is in patient addiction treatment. This form of treatment, also called residential rehabilitation, is unique among addiction treatment styles because of its immersive approach. Every other type of treatment available is touch and go, meaning the recovering addict spends some of their time in treatment and the rest of their time among the world. Inpatient addiction treatment takes the approach that addiction is totally consuming, therefore the most logical way to combat it is through treatment that is totally consuming. Inpatient addiction treatment requires the recovering addict to live on site and be monitored around the clock, being completely contained in an environment that promotes mental and physical health. This option is the best for people who are struggling with a severe addiction.
Inpatient treatment gives each client the opportunity to go through a complete detox, if it was a substance they were addicted to. This restores their physical health to them through a medically supervised process that gets them mentally clear enough to receive treatment. The inpatient model of treatment ensures that no outside influences will trigger the recovering addict, causing them to relapse. Instead, they are kept in a safe, contained environment where they can focus on their mental health through workbook exercises, readings, counseling sessions, group therapy and healthy recreation. Their meals are prepared for them and opportunities to get exercise are given to them. They encounter no experiences other than healthy opportunities to grow and counsel.
Even once the treatment program is finished, the inpatient rehab program offers the recovering addict the opportunity to stay active in their recovery by attending support group sessions, receiving sponsorship and committing to ongoing counseling. It is the policy of most inpatient rehabs to follow up with clients and check on their progress. Not everyone who is struggling with addiction needs as concentrated of a treatment model as inpatient rehabilitation, but it has been proven to be the most effective way of eradicating addiction problems in significant cases of addiction. Seek the services of an inpatient addiction treatment facility if addiction is ruining your life.