Behavioral Therapies

The Effectiveness of Behavioral Therapies for Substance Abuse Treatment

Drug and alcohol abuse is a common issue these days, especially amongst the youth. It starts with a basic dealing mechanism by people undergoing tremendous stress, as a leisure activity or just a challenge between friends. However, it gradually builds up into a habit that is hard to let go of, often requiring the help of professionals that provide drug counseling and substance abuse counseling.

It is taxing to find a good drug and alcohol treatment centre that provides a comprehensive solution for patients with all types of addictions. And if you do find one, make sure they inculcate behavioral therapy in their treatment plan to ensure prolonged sobriety and abstinence of further substance use. Here’s how behavioral therapy leads to effective treatment.

What are Behavioral Therapies?

Drug and alcohol treatment centres commonly use behavioral Therapy for patients recovering from substance abuse, alcoholism or drug addiction. The basic idea behind this is the theory that all behaviors are learnt, and any unhealthy habits can be modified by adopting the right approach. The core methodology is to understand the patient’s unique requirements and accordingly provide incentives to remain abstinent. It also helps modify their attitudes and increase life skills so that it becomes easier to deal with stressful situations that might trigger a relapse.

Types of Behavioral Therapies

Broadly speaking, there are 4 types of behavioral therapies that substance abuse treatment centers normally use:

  • Rational Emotive Behavioral Therapy: It is used to help people identify unhealthy, self-destructive and negative thoughts, consider their validity and learn to replace them with healthy and positive thoughts. This helps patients effectively manage negative emotions, develop a positive thought process, and develop healthy relations with their near and dear ones.
  • Contingency Management: It works on the principle that rewarding positive behavior will result in a repetition of the same. Ideally, it uses positive reinforcement methodologies to change behavior.  It is the best treatment for patients dealing with alcoholism, and substance abuse.
  • 12-Step facilitation therapy: This behavioral therapy’s main purpose is to promote long-term sobriety through engagement with peers. It encourages active engagement in a 12-step recovery group based on the belief of acceptance, surrendering and active involvement.
  • Cognitive Behavioral Therapy: It is used to adjust how the patient feels by changing attitudes/behavior, especially for substance abuse treatment. Clinical counselors individually work with patients to make them understand the positive and negative effects of alcohol and drug abuse, identify high-risk situations, develop coping strategies and substantially understand the mechanisms to help change their lifestyle.
  • Family Behavior Therapy: Often, people are prone to drug abuse, alcoholism and substance use as a result of severe issues with their families. They treat them as a coping mechanism, which ultimately harms their well-being. Family behavior therapy includes counselors to work with the patient’s family to improve the home environment to promote abstinence.

How Effective are Behavioral Therapies?

Behavioral therapies have been known to be extremely beneficial in substance abuse treatment programs, detox treatment for alcoholics, and treatment for drug addicts. It helps patients in the following manner.

  • It modifies negative behaviors and attitudes amongst patients suffering from drug and alcohol abuse, while effectively treating those being treated for substance abuse.
  • It improves life skills to help them deal with environmental stresses and restrain themselves from settling back into the same old habits while avoiding a relapse.
  • It provides incentives for maintaining abstinence and thereby allowing patients to begin leading a normal life.
  • The use of complementary therapies with behavioral therapies by substance abuse treatment centers helps patients and their families form healthier bonds, thereby eliminating the cause of these poor and unhealthy habits.

In a Nutshell

There is no singular approach or a definitive path to recovery. The substance abuse treatment methodology varies from patient to patient, and as a result, the time of treatment and the results also vary considerably. With the above shared behavioral treatment, the addicts learn to be more mindful of their body, mind and spirit and their issues. They learn to better evaluate their thoughts, attitudes, feelings and ideas and identify the destructive ones from the healthy ones to start on the path of sobriety.

If you or a loved one seek effective substance abuse programs, drug counseling or substance abuse counseling, look for a center that is well reputed for providing a high-quality, holistic treatment program. Or you can directly contact the professionals for expert guidance.

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