Ingredients of Successful Alcoholism Treatment Programs

January 22nd, 2011

What makes an alcoholism treatment program effective? The following points are generally recognised by the alcoholism rehabilitation industry as being hallmarks of an effective alcoholism treatment program.

Early Discovery and Intervention

The earlier that alcohol dependency or alcohol abuse is discovered, the better. Engaging early in an alcoholism treatment program for drinking problems gives the patient a far better chance for successful recovery. The further down the road of alcoholism, the more challenges there are to overcome.

Complete Assessment with Individualised Treatment

Each person that develops a drinking problem is unique with different ways of coping and responding to different types of alcoholism treatment programs. Unfortunately there is no one treatment that works for all. It is best to be assessed and treated as individually as possible with a treatment plan developed for the particular needs of each individual alcoholic.

Care Supervision

Alcoholism treatment programs require careful management and supervision of addiction treatment consultants efforts to best co-ordinate the comprehensive care needed to maximise patients potential for a journey to recovery.  Family and friends wondering how to help a person with drug addiction or needing an alcoholism treatment program need to be involved in the process from the first assessment through the family program and even be aware of what’s involved in the follow-up after-care programs post alcoholism rehabilitation.

Established Programs and Philosophies

There are a number of interventions based on different treatment philosophies that have proven to be successful in decreasing alcohol abuse. These depend on the client’s gender, the degree of alcohol dependence and the will to change. Most successful treatment programs offer more than one method of treatment.

Patient Interaction

Patient interaction is vital where the addictions treatment consultants contract with the clients regarding their behavior. This is also known as contingency management. Good behavior is rewarded in some way and bad behavior has consequences.  This seems to have a positive impact on treatment results.

Training in Social Skills

Cognitive behavioral therapy says that those who struggle with alcohol abuse can learn to identify demanding circumstances. Training gives them skills to manage those situations in constructive ways.

Use of Medication

Medication will not “cure” alcoholism, however it can be used in conjunction with interventions and therapies to enhance the alcoholism treatment programs reach and effectiveness.

Specialised Treatment

Individual treatment needs to focus on medical issues, psychiatric challenges, employment needs or family problems. Alcoholism treatment programs should target the individual needs of the client by assessing their individual and specific requirements.

Follow-Up

It can be quite common for many who have gone through an alcoholism treatment program to have a relapse at some stage. Follow-up and after-care is vital with client participation in small groups. This kind of support has shown long-term improvement.

Relationship with Staff

When addictions counsellors and therapists have a quality relationship with the patients, the alcoholics tend to be more motivated in their alcoholism treatment program and recovery process. The relationship should be empathic instead of confrontational.

Length of Stay

The length of stay in an alcoholism treatment program significantly affects the sucess of the alcohol rehab. Generally, the longer a client stays in treatment, the better the outcome. An inpatient facility tends to have better results initially than an outpatient setting. An outpatient program that is shorter than 90 days is not as effective either.

Support Groups

Participation in support groups like Alcoholics Anonymous should be a vital part of alcoholism treatment. This may take place during treatment and as part of the after-care program.

Strong Client Incentive

Recovery from alcoholism depends to a large degree on the aspiration of the person to get sober and to remain that way. Good alcoholism treatment programs will improve this motivation through effective  rehab and therapy sessions.

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