Group Therapy

Drug and alcohol addiction and substance abuse in general is a major crisis and has been for some time now. The nation has been faced with a major and a serious addiction problem to drugs and alcohol both. Since the turn of the century, substance abuse has gotten bad and will probably get worse. The observation here is that the addiction crisis seems to be worsening more and more as the years go by and as illegal drugs filter into the nation in greater and greater quantities, as alcohol is abused by more and more persons, and as prescription drugs have created more addicts than illegal drugs have.

In times like these, it becomes of the utmost importance to try to address these addiction problems before they get out of control. The best way to do so is with inpatient, residential, drug and alcohol addiction and dependence treatment centers, detox facilities, rehab programs, and recovery organizations. These problems and these issues seem to get worse and worse but they can be stopped and reversed if inpatient rehab is applied to all in any geographic area who are addicted. In an inpatient rehab center, one of the most successful methods of address is with group therapy.

Group therapy creates an environment in which multiple, recovering addicts can come together with a group therapist and work on their issues together. The National Survey on Drug Use and Health (NSDUH) pointed out two key points that make group therapy incredibly useful and helpful:

  1. “First of all, group therapy is efficient and easy to run and it allows recovering addicts to come out of their shell and really start to focus on addressing their issues once and for all. This is the key and the best aspect of group therapy. It actually does make a recovering addict speak up when needed, and listen when needed too. It takes the individual out of his or her own mind and really starts to look at and focus on his or her problems and learn from the discussions that are going on around him or her.”
  2. “The second aspect about group therapy is that interacting with other recovering addicts gives a person something that cannot be achieved in any other form of addiction treatment, including one on one counseling. This is why, though one on one counseling is the epitome of perfect addiction treatment, group therapy almost always complements one on one therapy. What group therapy accomplishes is it given a recovering addict a chance to not only put into perspective his or her own addiction problem from hearing others tell their stories, but it also gives the individual a chance to help others by assisting them and advising them and counseling them on what they can do to push forward their sobriety. It gives an individual a chance to help others, something that (while one is in rehab anyway) can only be accomplished in group therapy.”
  3. These are the benefits of group therapy. They are varied and they come in many different shapes and kinds, but they all accomplish basically the same things, and that is an effective and beneficial learning experience. Those who engage in group therapy experience all of this while also having the chance to help others, something that every recovering addict needs to do desperately.

    Why Group Therapy is Needed

    Now more than ever it is necessary and needed for those who are addicted to drugs and alcohol to go to rehab. There are now more than twenty-five million Americans who are addicted to drugs and alcohol in the nation. Anywhere from eighty-thousand to one-hundred and twenty thousand Americans die from addiction very year. Addiction costs the nation about six-hundred billion dollars every year. Addiction also causes hardship and loss and unhappiness in about one out of every four American families.

    These are just a glimpse of why we need group therapy and all of the therapies and all of the rehab techniques possible. These issues are huge and quite severe. In fact they just keep getting worse. For example:

    • The number of unintentional overdose deaths from prescription pain relievers has soared in the United States to epidemic level proportions, more than quadrupling since the year of 1999. There is also growing evidence to suggest a relationship between increased non-medical use of opioid analgesics and heroin abuse in the United States too, which shows an active, tandem, back and forth use and abuse of these substances. Group therapy can address these issues and help people who are affected by these drugs.
    • Emergency department reports speak to the growing impact of methamphetamine abuse in the country to date. The Drug Abuse Warning Network (DAWN) which collects key information on drug-related episodes from hospital emergency departments (EDs) throughout the United States, has reported a greater than 50 percent increase in the number of ED visits related to methamphetamine abuse between the years of 1995 and 2002, reaching approximately 73,000 ED visits all in all, or 4 percent of all drug-related visits in the year of 2004. Because meth is so heavily, mentally addictive, group therapy is a huge factor in creating a successful recovery for those who abuse it.
    • To illustrate this point when it comes to opiate use and abuse, the overall and total number of opioid pain relievers prescribed in the United States has skyrocketed in the past 25 years alone to never before seen levels of use and abuse. The number of prescriptions for opioids (like hydrocodone and oxycodone products for example) have escalated from around 76 million in 1991 to nearly 207 million in 2013 insanely enough, with the United States being the by far biggest consumer globally, accounting for almost 100 percent of the world total for hydrocodone (e.g., Vicodin) and 81 percent for oxycodone (e.g., Percocet). The U.S. is a pill popping country to the tenth degree. Group therapy helps people focus on resolving their issues without having to turn to pill abuse.

    Group Therapy Bringing Sobriety to Thousands

    Since the early 1900s group therapy has been used and utilized by many who have made beating addiction their number one priority and goal. Addiction is a crisis yes this is true, but it doesn’t have to be. With group therapy offered at both inpatient and outpatient rehab centers and programs, addiction can be addressed and eradicated once and for all and for good.

    Group therapy is easy to organize and run, and it takes little commitment and cost on the part of the addict. Group therapy is a method that can be used on both current, struggling addicts, newly recovered addicts, recovering addicts, and long-time sobered up individuals. This is perhaps the most versatile and malleable approach to addiction treatment and it has been for some time. With group therapy, total freedom and permanent sobriety can be attained as long as those participating in it are willing to work through it and come out the other side winning.

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