Addiction Treatment Navigating the Path to Addiction Recovery

Evidence-Based Treatment

The style and overall setting of addiction treatment may vary, yet research spanning various therapeutic modalities has consistently demonstrated effectiveness in addressing substance abuse. Consequently, therapy plays a crucial role in the treatment programs of nearly every accredited inpatient rehabilitation facility nationwide.

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Approximately 50% of people diagnosed with a substance abuse disorder will also be diagnosed with a mental health condition. As a result, a variety of addiction treatments have emerged to address both diagnoses simultaneously. To provide personalized care and mutual support, three key forms of therapy have become most popular:

3 Most Popular Therapy Settings

Individual Therapy

Personal therapy involves individual sessions between a client and a healthcare professional, focusing on gaining insights into the client’s distinct needs. Generally, this type of addiction treatment strives to assist clients in building coping mechanisms, comprehending their thought processes, and providing tailored emotional support.


Group Therapy

In group therapy, individuals in recovery have the opportunity to learn within a social setting, gain insights into the impact of addiction on others’ lives, and navigate the challenges of post-sobriety life. This approach facilitates rapid progress as participants can identify triggers or patterns in others, aiding them in recognizing similar issues within themselves.

family therapy icon for addiction treatment

Family Therapy

Family therapy, a variant of group therapy, centers on understanding the broader impact of addiction on the entire family unit rather than solely on the individual client. It has demonstrated greater effectiveness compared to treatment approaches that do not incorporate family therapy.

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Behavioral therapy, a type of conversational therapy, involves clients interacting with a therapist to foster abstinence, alter attitudes and beliefs, acquire skills for managing stressful situations, and gain insights into achieving lasting sobriety.

Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT) is a prevalent and efficacious form of talk therapy, wherein therapists collaborate with clients to pinpoint detrimental thought patterns. Once identified, clients acquire skills to reshape their thought processes, fostering enduring behavioral changes. CBT is widely regarded as the pinnacle of talk therapy and has proven effectiveness in addressing both addiction and mental health issues.

Dialectical Behavioral Therapy (DBT), a branch of CBT, aids clients in embracing self-acceptance and cultivating healthier behaviors for sustained sobriety. Widely employed in addiction treatment, DBT has demonstrated effectiveness in fostering the initiation and maintenance of sobriety.

As the name suggests, exposure therapy refers to an addiction treatment method in which a client will be repeatedly exposed to a stimuli that may be causing their substance abuse problems. The goal is that the repeated presence of the stimuli will allow the client to become desensitized to these triggering thoughts or experiences. It has been shown to be effective in treating bipolar disorder and PTSD.

Motivational interviewing, an encouraging and collaborative approach to addiction treatment, involves clients and therapists working together to enhance self-confidence and motivation. By pinpointing internal motivators, it effectively addresses denial and has been validated as an effective method for individuals grappling with substance abuse issues.

Rational-Emotive Behavioral Therapy (REBT), a talk therapy variant, assists clients in recognizing self-defeating behaviors or thoughts and questioning the rationality of such thoughts. Demonstrating effectiveness, REBT is proven to address issues related to unhealthy feelings and substance abuse.

Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing (EMDR) serves as a treatment method aiding clients in addressing root causes of anxiety and mood disorders. This involves employing rapid eye movements and therapeutic techniques to process trauma and pain, diminish self-doubt, and enhance self-confidence. EMDR minimizes reactivity to memories and has demonstrated efficacy in alleviating issues tied to negative emotions and beliefs, offering relief from PTSD symptoms.

Psychodynamic therapy, employed in addiction treatment for underlying issues like trauma and PTSD, delves into revealing unconscious motivations and beliefs driving a client’s actions. Demonstrating effectiveness, psychodynamic therapy proves valuable in comprehending intricate trauma disorders.

Gestalt therapy, a conventional mental health approach, centers on personal relationships, experiences, and emotions to foster clients’ present-day connection. In contrast to many other therapies delving into the past, Gestalt therapy prioritizes the here and now to enhance clients’ sense of attachment to the present.

Acceptance and Commitment Therapy (ACT) is a psychological intervention where therapists pinpoint thoughts or actions perceived as negative by clients. They then reframe the language surrounding these thoughts, aiming to mitigate clients’ self-criticism and fear associated with them.

Somatic Experiencing (SE) is an alternative addiction treatment method focusing on the body. It aids individuals coping with PTSD by heightening awareness of inner physical sensations, considered carriers of traumatic events. SE aims to alleviate and release the bodily sensations experienced when clients revisit traumatic memories.

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Experiential therapy stands out as a unique approach to addiction treatment where the client and therapist utilize external influences to enhance the client’s self-discovery and promote a more positive outlook on recovery.

Equine therapy, also known as horse therapy, constitutes an addiction treatment method where clients engage with horses through activities like riding, grooming, and feeding. Collaborating with licensed therapists, clients identify thought patterns during these interactions, using horses as a foundation to address real-world interactions. Apart from offering a break from routine treatment, equine therapy has proven to prolong clients’ engagement in addiction treatment and enhance qualities such as empathy, impulse control, and a sense of responsibility.

Biofeedback employs FDA-approved devices to gauge various body signals such as brain waves, heart rate, temperature, and perspiration. It then aims to restructure physical responses to trigger situations. As a supplementary therapy, biofeedback addresses the underlying causes of addiction. Therapists, skilled in interpreting physical responses, guide clients through altered thinking and emotional response control. When paired with behavioral therapies, biofeedback has demonstrated effectiveness in boosting abstinence rates.

Cranial Electrical Stimulation, abbreviated as CES, serves as a therapeutic method for individuals grappling with depression, anxiety, stress, and irrational beliefs. Utilizing non-invasive devices, CES delivers low-intensity pulses to the brain and earlobes. Demonstrating efficacy, this therapy has been proven to enhance symptoms and overall quality of life in treated individuals, leading to a substantial 40% reduction in anxiety issues.

Wilderness therapy proves particularly beneficial for clients experiencing dual diagnosis. While frequently applied to adolescents, it can be effective for individuals of all ages. This approach is utilized for those addressing emotional, behavioral, and substance abuse issues, often involving outdoor activities such as hiking. Research indicates that clients undergoing wilderness therapy exhibit higher rates of treatment completion compared to those opting for conventional addiction treatment options.

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In addition to evidence-based addiction treatment programs, there are alternative therapy methods under ongoing study, potentially offering benefits to enhance a client’s recovery prospects.

Acupuncture, less frequently encountered in addiction treatment, is an experimental drug therapy with emerging evidence suggesting potential benefits for certain aspects of drug dependence. The NADA Acudetox Protocol stands out as a clinically proven treatment option beneficial for individuals grappling with addiction and behavioral health issues.

In addition to acupuncture, massage therapy offers a hands-on approach to addiction treatment, aiding clients in relaxation to enhance focus on other therapeutic methods. Furthermore, it has demonstrated effectiveness in assisting individuals with substance abuse, particularly those undergoing alcohol withdrawal.

Though not formally a therapy, exercise has demonstrated benefits for both physical health and mental well-being. In addition to enhancing overall physical and mental health, exercise has proven to be a valuable treatment modality.

Mindfulness in addiction recovery is frequently expressed through yoga, meditation, and similar practices. These methods serve as a prevalent type of complementary therapy, enhancing “addiction treatment, prevention, and recovery.”

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Medication-Assisted Therapy (MAT) is a progressive addiction treatment approach that integrates prescribed medications to address cravings and talk therapy to address the root causes of addiction. These medications are designed to support clients in extended treatment, gradually tapering off as they engage in talk therapy to address underlying issues. Various MAT medications are accessible, such as Vivitrol, Suboxone, and Methadone, among others.

For individuals seeking addiction treatment, especially those in Arizona or considering travel, The Hope House provides behavioral, experiential, and alternative therapies across various settings. Our skilled clinicians leverage a diverse toolkit to assist in overcoming substance abuse and mental health challenges. Connect with our addiction specialists today to explore a personalized treatment plan.

For those seeking treatment in other locations, SAMHSA provides a free treatment locator, available here.