The primary focus of addiction therapy is to help discover all the underlying causes of addiction and mental illness. Therapy aims to heal the individual from the inside out and to prevent relapse.
Addiction happens because of underlying issues with genetics and the environment surrounding a person. Studies show that addiction can pass through genetics. Having a parent or grandparent who battled with addiction can cause the next generations more prone to compulsive behaviors and more susceptible to substance abuse. Events that happen in life, such as trauma and exposure to substance abuse at a young age, also affect a person’s behavior.
What is Psychotherapy?
Psychotherapy, a form of talk therapy, is vital to treating drug and alcohol addiction. Therapy is available in all rehab settings, including inpatient, outpatient, and sober living homes. The goal of treatment is the same during any rehab program, to prepare a person for a successful, healthy life outside of rehab.
Experts believe that a person never heals from addiction. Continued treatment with a therapist for a more extended period is necessary for relapse prevention. Therapy sessions can decrease over time as a person learns to cope with their life and all the stresses it brings.
Therapy is an individualized treatment that a therapist and patient design together. Just as every addiction is unique, so is every treatment plan.
Types of Addiction Therapy
Individual therapy is crucial to beating a substance abuse addiction. Individual counseling is an opportunity to receive support and guidance in a one-on-one environment. Individual therapy helps conquer issues with substance abuse, depression, anxiety, relationship problems, and many other problems that may prevent a happy life.
Individual Therapy is also called psychotherapy or talk therapy in a one-on-one environment. The Therapist will create peaceful and calm surroundings to promote the feeling of safety, which helps in opening up. Therapy gives the individual freedom to explore emotions, feelings, and behaviors openly. The Therapist will aid in identifying things that need to change and how to change them while giving the individual a better understanding of themselves.
Individual therapy focuses on immediate problems and things that may occur right out of rehab. Subjects and details discussed during treatment are confidential and without judgment. The goals of Individual Therapy is to inspire change, improve life, to learn healthy behaviors, and how to cope without turning to drugs or alcohol. It is not uncommon for someone to continue with therapy beyond rehab as a way to hold themselves accountable and for self-growth.
The general goal of psychotherapy is to talk through all mental issues to promote healing, growth, and healthy lifestyles. The Therapist mostly listens while giving guidance and insight into the issues at hand while helping to set goals and define a treatment plan.
Individual therapy sessions can last anywhere from 45- 60 minutes. Time in therapy depends solely on the complexity of the issues and the goals set forth. Research shows that participation in psychotherapy dramatically decreases the chance of relapse. A well-designed treatment plan and a willingness to achieve a healthy life have long term benefits.
In individual therapy, a therapist will incorporate other treatment therapies such as:
- Cognitive Behavioral Therapy
- Dialectical Behavioral Therapy
- Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing Therapy
- Motivational Therapies
Group therapy is a form of treatment used to treat addiction. One significant benefit of group therapy is that all participants have fought addiction and are learning to live a healthy life. Group therapy helps as everyone shares experiences and information on what has been beneficial in the fight. Being in a setting with people who know the fight gives a non-judgmental environment that builds confidence and reduces stress. Bonds and relationships form in group therapy, which builds support systems that last.
A Therapist will focus on the following five stages of recovery:
- Pre-contemplation: For those who have not accepted, they have a problem and need help. Some feel forced to be there and blame their problems on outside forces and not addiction. This stage of recovery comes with the most resistance, and those in this stage are hitting “rock bottom.”
- Contemplation: The acceptance of a problem and the need for change has happened, healing can begin. In this stage, the emotional ups and downs can be overwhelming. The feelings of being lost, confused, hopeless bit the thought of sobriety and a happy future keeps people making progress.
- Preparation: Those who have entered this stage are full of hope and excitement. The progress made is starting to reap the rewards in life and gives confidence that a lifelong happy and sober life is achievable.
- Action: The Action stage is self-explanatory. The individual will use the knowledge and tools learned throughout treatment. This may include removing people from their life that will not promote a healthy life. And choosing to move to a new area or a completely new state to start over with new friends that will support healthy decisions.
- Maintenance: The maintenance stage is a critical stage of relapse prevention. The Therapist will help strengthen your confidence to help fight relapse and make healthy decisions. The Therapist also helps with education on group meetings outside of treatment, such as Alcoholics Anonymous and Narcotics Anonymous. For those who still need a little supervision, a therapist will help get an individual into a sober living home.
Family therapy is integral to repairing the relationships that addiction has torn apart and past hurts that led to the addiction.
NCBI identifies how substance abuse affects the following family structures:
- The client lives with a partner – If one partner is sober and the other is not, it can cause issues of dependency. If both partners battle addiction and only one gets clean, the environment is not conducive to continued sobriety.
- The client lives with a partner and children – If the client is also a parent, addiction could have detrimental effects on the children. In some cases, addiction can lead to mental and physical abuse of the children and the spouse. The situation is worse if both parents have addiction issues.
- The client comes from a blended family – Blending two families is hard enough, but adding in a substance abuse issue can cause the family to fall apart.
- The client has grown children – Addiction can cause undue stress and financial hardship for adult children. Worrying about your parents and trying to raise a family can be mentally and physically taxing.
- The client is an adolescent living at home- Siblings may feel that they are not as important or that the client is receiving all the attention from the parents. Siblings can form resentment against the client and start acting out to get attention.
Through education, the Therapist helps the family understand the hold addiction has on a person and why it causes an individual to act the way it does. The Therapist works hard to make every member of the family feel respected. The feelings and emotions of each individual are acknowledged and justified to achieve the greatest success.
Healthy communication in a family is difficult in a healthy family, adding the problem of addiction in the mix and healthy communication fades away. The Therapist initiates open-dialogue that will start the healing process. Addiction and dishonesty is a common combination. Because of that, family members can have a hard time opening their hearts and trusting their loved ones. Time and honesty will be the focus on repairing the hurt. Time will show the improvements made, which builds trust and proves honesty.
Essential Steps in Family Therapy
An essential step in family therapy is setting boundaries. Each member needs boundaries to promote and sustain a healthy life. If a family member is fighting an active addiction, the individual in recovery may choose to cut ties with that individual. Or if a family member is an enabler, that individual needs to set boundaries for themselves and the recovering family member. There are programs outside of treatment for families such as Al-Anon, Nar-Anon, and other local groups. It is vital to seek support from those who understand and can give advice on keeping healthy boundaries.
Relapse Prevention Therapy
Relapse, in addiction treatment, is when an individual gets sober and then starts using drugs and alcohol again. Relapse prevention therapy is a form of cognitive-behavioral therapy that focuses on teaching tools to prevent relapse.
A Therapist will teach the client strategies to:
- Understand the process of relapse
- Identify “high-risk” situations and healthy coping skills
- Cope with cravings
- Stay involved in group therapy sessions for support
- Seek help immediately after a “slip”
- Build a healthy and sober life
Relapse prevention therapy identifies the individual’s vulnerable spots that could lead to relapse and prepare them to cope with what life puts in their path. Relapse prevention therapy does not treat relapse as a failure but as an opportunity to grow and learn. Referring to relapse as a “slip” or “lapse,” hopefully shortens the length of it and lessens the fear of getting help again.
Addiction Recovery At Ken Seeley Rehab
Achieving sobriety in 1989, Ken Seeley has dedicated his life to helping others find a healthy and sober life. To learn more about how Ken Seeley Rehab can help you achieve a life of sobriety, contact our caring and dedicated staff today!