Group Therapy for Substance Abuse

Group therapy is a type of psychotherapy during which therapists gather multiple people together in one setting. This form of therapy session encourages honest, open discussions in a safe environment. Group therapy for substance abuse is an effective treatment option for those facing the challenges of recovery. Chapel Hill Medical Detox has a dedicated team of trained professionals who will create an individualized plan for your recovery process.

The goals of group therapy are to strengthen communication skills, develop socialization skills, and invite discussions that allow you to grow. The discussions that happen within the group will also teach you how to handle criticism. Group therapy helps you learn how to provide your own advice in a thoughtful way to your peers. 

When you take part in group therapy for substance abuse, you will participate in sessions with others who are working toward becoming sober. These group therapy sessions are held on a regular, consistent schedule. The final goal is to help you become free of the drugs and/or alcohol that have taken over your life.

Is Group Therapy For Substance Abuse Right For Me?

There is much to think about when considering therapy options for treating substance abuse. Something that you may consider is the benefits of individual therapy versus group therapy. Treating substance abuse with group therapy is the usual preferred method. This form of therapy places you in sessions with multiple people. The group will consist of peers who are experiencing similar day-to-day challenges in their fight to become free of their addiction.

Individual therapy is beneficial if there are other underlying mental health conditions that need to be addressed in addition to the addiction. If this is the case, the individual therapy sessions would be a separate one-on-one meeting with a therapist. This is a decision that will be made when you are assessed and recommendations are made about the best treatment plan for you.

Group therapy for substance abuse can be a life-changing step if you are willing to make the commitment to become sober. It’s a process that will encourage you to be open and honest about your struggles with a group of your peers. This process will hold you accountable for your words and actions. It will give you a reason to become sober and remain sober.

Can Group Therapy Help Treat Substance Abuse?

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Battling your addiction with drugs and/or alcohol can be an overwhelming task for both you and your loved ones and friends. Treating your addiction with group therapy allows you to gather with a group of people who are facing the same struggles. The conversations in your group therapy sessions can supply you with different perspectives and provide different viewpoints.

There are many types of addiction that substance abuse group therapy focuses on. Some of these addictions include:

The group therapy sessions will provide you with surroundings that are structured, routine, and safe. This structure and routine occur with scheduled meetings. Most people who are addicted to drugs and/or alcohol are lacking structure in their lives. The organized and routine group therapy sessions can bring a renewed sense of balance back into your life. 

Meetings are also a safe place because what is discussed is kept private and confidential among the participants. This allows for open, free discussion where there is no tolerance for judgment or criticism. The therapist who is leading the meeting will be responsible for monitoring the conversations and keeping conflict to a minimum.

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Types of Group Therapy Sessions

There are various types of group therapy and treatment models used for substance abuse group therapy. Each type of group therapy has a different focus. Your therapist will choose the model that will best fit your needs. These models include:

Psychoeducational Groups 

These use a technique that educates you about your substance use disorder and the consequences of your choice to consume the drugs and/or alcohol that led to your addiction. Psychoeducational groups also focus on recovery techniques.

Skills Development Groups

These group sessions focus on techniques that provide information on how to handle remaining drug and alcohol-free. Discussions may include how to manage triggers and make better decisions.

Cognitive Behavioral Therapy Groups

The focus of these groups is to change the pattern of behavior or negative thought processes that trigger the need for alcohol or drugs.

Support Groups

These groups offer a non-judgemental place to receive advice and support from a professional as well as a group of peers.

Interpersonal Process Groups

These use the process of psychodynamics, which investigates childhood experiences and how they may have caused you to become addicted to drugs and/or alcohol.

What Can I Expect From Group Therapy for Substance Abuse?

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In general, group therapy sessions can be open or closed. Open group sessions allow new members to join at any time. Open sessions do not have a set start or end date. Closed group sessions have the same participants attend from start to finish. Closed sessions do have a specific start and end date.

Group therapy sessions may be led by one therapist, or sometimes co-led by two therapists. The role of the therapist is to lead the sessions and make sure that everyone stays focused on topics that are beneficial for everyone who is participating. The therapist may ask questions, encourage communication within the group, and provide feedback. 

Group therapy sessions for substance abuse may be held anywhere from once a week up to two to three times a week. If intense therapy is needed, the group therapy sessions may occur daily. Treatment for substance abuse may be required for up to one year.

There are generally three stages of group therapy:

  • The beginning phase – This phase allows you to become familiar with the way things will be run within the group sessions. Therapists will review the rules of the sessions and discuss everyone’s goals.
  • The middle phase – This phase focuses on things that are necessary for you to make changes in your life to form new patterns of behavior. These new behavior patterns will lead you to a life of sobriety. 
  • The ending phase – This phase is the period of time during group therapy that allows you to reflect on the accomplishments that you have made while undergoing therapy.
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Benefits of Group Therapy In Treating Substance Abuse

Group therapy will allow you these benefits:

  • Interaction with others – Interaction allows you to share the challenges of becoming sober with your peers.
  • Creates a feeling of belonging – This sense of belonging helps you realize that you’re not alone on this journey.
  • Sharing of information – Group therapy sessions allow participants to give each other advice and share experiences.
  • Provides a large support system – Your peers will become your cheerleaders and offer you support and encouragement.
  • Increases your self-esteem – You will find that sharing your fears and accomplishments  will increase your feelings of self-worth.
  • Promotes self awareness – Group therapy sessions will give you the tools you need to be able to better communicate with your friends and family.
  • Encouragement generates hope – By providing and receiving support and encouragement from your peers, you become hopeful about a future of sobriety.

The long-term rewards of group therapy for substance abuse include feelings of connection and commitment. The connections you create with your peers from the group are valuable. Some of these peers may even remain connected to you after the therapy sessions are over.

Life is stressful at times, and learning to cope with those stresses without the aid of drugs and/or alcohol is key. The relationships that you form within group therapy can build trust and a renewed sense of purpose. This connection can also be very important at times when you’re feeling tempted to break your newfound sobriety. Leaning on someone who you can reach out to during these moments is valuable. 

Group Therapy for Substance Abuse At Chapel Hill Medical Detox

Chapel Hill Medical Detox is an accredited rehabilitation center located in West Palm Beach Florida. Our facility offers an environment that promotes healing. We offer an intimate setting that enables us to focus on the specific needs of every patient.

Our qualified staff will guide you toward a healthier lifestyle during the group therapy sessions. You can trust us to show you the steps needed for you to regain control of your life. Everyone has a situation that is unique. Our staff recognizes this and will gear your treatment goals to meet your needs.

We understand that you may have many questions concerning how group therapy can help treat substance abuse. We are available and ready to answer those questions. Contact us today. We’re ready to help you or your loved one become and remain sober.