“Because drug abuse and addiction have so many dimensions and disrupt so many aspects of an individual’s life, treatment is not simple… Addiction treatment must help the individual stop using drugs, maintain a drug-free lifestyle, and achieve productive functioning in the family, at work, and in society.”
~ Dr. Nora Volkow, M.D., Director of the National Institute on Drug Abuse
You hear the term bandied about by the most reputable San Diego addiction recovery programs – “evidence-based therapy“. But if you or someone you love is seeking to recover from a substance abuse disorder, what exactly does that mean? What kind of treatment is received under an evidence-based therapeutic model?
Evidence-based Therapy Defined
Simply put, evidence-based therapy uses treatment approaches, strategies, and components that are strongly supported by real evidence – accepted science, data, statistics, clinical judgement, and proven success.
Evidence-based therapy is multilayered in nature, attacking the disease of addiction on several fronts. Each specific approach or strategy is used to address both the specific aspects of the individual’s substance abuse disorder and the consequences and repercussions that affect the individual, their friends and family, and society as a whole.
In broad terms, evidence-based therapy for addiction recovery is handled by different behavioral therapies, frequently bolstered by supporting pharmacotherapies (medication-assisted recovery).
Evidence-based Behavioral Therapy for Addiction Recovery
Behavioral therapy helps addicts/alcoholics change their self-destructive behaviors. The goal is to replace bad habits with good ones. In terms of treating substance abuse disorders, behavioral therapy has several objectives:
- Engage the substance abuser and empower them to participate in their recovery
- Provide positive motivation and incentives for continued abstinence
- Modify drug-seeking or addictive behaviors
- Teach the substance abuser new life skills
- Assist in developing new stress reduction techniques and coping mechanisms
- Recognize “triggers” that may precipitate drug use/drinking
- Avoidance of unhealthy people, places, things, and thoughts
- Overcoming drug cravings
- Relapse prevention
Every time a person struggling with alcoholism or drug abuse learns a new skill or positive technique they gain a new tool that can help them when temptations, stresses, and compulsive cravings arise.
In the next installment, we will discuss different types of evidence-based behavioral therapy.
This is exactly the sort of effective treatment you can expect from Lasting Recovery – the #1 outpatient rehab San Diego has to offer. We are a nationally-accredited program, and our compassionate approach combines long-established treatment standards with the latest emerging accepted protocols within the addiction field of medicine.
By tailoring a treatment plan to your needs as an individual, we can help you restore balance, peace of mind, sanity, and sobriety to your life.