Psychotherapy And Addiction: How Does It Work?

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Psychotherapy And Addiction: How Does It Work?

Therapy is a vital part of many kinds of treatments. The type of therapy you undergo depends on the disorder or condition being treated, as well as a variety of unique factors. For the treatment of a substance abuse problem, therapy is often included in a treatment plan because of its effectiveness and ability to aid individuals in getting to the root of their addiction. Studies have shown that individuals who incorporated intensive therapy into their substance abuse treatment plan were less likely to experience a relapse and maintain long term sobriety.

Intensive therapy has become a valuable tool when it comes to substance abuse treatment. This type of therapy goes beyond the reach of traditional therapy methods in that it is focused specifically on the root causes of a patient’s addiction. These can be traumas or experiences with abuse going back to the individual’s childhood. Intensive therapy can be part of either inpatient or outpatient treatment. Ideally, the patient should not have needed to detox or have already completed a detox prior to beginning intensive therapy. Patients who also have emotional or behavioral issues, co-occurring disorders, or who are in a crisis will most likely need intensive therapy that goes beyond a traditional one per week schedule.

Intensive therapy can be completed in a variety of ways. A patient can schedule sessions several times a week, or complete 4-5 hour-long sessions at times that fit into their schedule. It all depends on the needs of the patient, their schedule, finances, and what type of substance abuse treatment they are already undergoing. The important thing is that they are able to leave the cares and distractions from their life behind when they are participating in sessions.

An intensive therapy session can utilize a variety of methods depending on the needs of the patient. These can include:

-motivational interviewing
-12 step groups
-equine therapy
-cognitive behavioral therapy
-family or couples therapy
-psychodrama therapy
-adventure therapy
-experiential therapy

Before beginning, the patient will work with their therapist to discuss and establish the goals they want to accomplish from the sessions. For someone with alcoholism or addiction, these goals can include:
-determining how addiction or alcoholism has impacted their life, family’s life, and other relationships.
-learning new coping and communication skills and practicing them
-recognizing any existing anger or grief
-recognizing where relationship challenges lie.
-developing spirituality
-learning how to set goals and working toward accomplishing them

In general, an intensive therapy program will include consistent psychiatric evaluation, participation in a 12 step group, and providing the patient with resources on learning more about their addiction and/or disorder.

It’s important for a patient to understand that there is no one type of therapy that will work for everyone. This is one of the reasons why intensive therapy is so effective – it can be tailored to each person’s unique needs and background. Working with a good therapist will also mean a patient can adjust their treatment as needed. Sometimes a certain therapy method will not be effective and another approach needs to be tried. it’s perfectly acceptable to experiment with methods during therapy until one that is more effective is found.

Intensive psychotherapy is hard work and not for those with a passive approach to their recovery. for anyone who wants to jump in and face their issues head-on, this approach is the most rewarding and effective way to get to the root of an addiction.