Is Social Recovery the Answer to Addiction Problems?

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According to the National Institute on Drug Abuse, there are many type of treatment available for addiction. These treatments usually involve counseling, psychotherapy, and medications. This has been the standard of treatment for many years. Although the current treatments for drug addiction work most of the time, there are incidences where they do not help.

Fortunately, there are a few new ideas when it comes to addiction and recovery. These ideas take the original ideas and principles of treatment and build on them to improve the overall chances of recovery. One of these new ideas is social recovery.

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What is Social Recovery?

Social recovery works to make the recovering addict more socially stable.

Social recovery is the idea that it is not only the addiction that should be treated but the person and community as well. It states that if the person is happy and healthy in a good environment, the addiction will stop on its own.

This idea started when scientists realized that the rats that they were studying for addiction on, were fundamentally unhappy. They were placed in something called a skinner box. This box contained a rat with barely enough room to move and a choice of drugged or undrugged water. They almost always chose the drugged water. It took scientists a while to realize that the rats might be drinking the drugged water out of boredom, unhappiness, or lack of something better to do.

When the rats were placed in a happy environment, the results changed. Most of the rats rarely drank the drugged water once they were put with other rats and had other things to do. This study is known as the Rat Park experiment.

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47,300* People Addicted
23,100* Getting Help
8,209* Deaths
*Statistic from 2015

How is this Theory Put Into Practice?

The Rat Park experiment began what is now known as social recovery. This is the idea people who are happy and content in their social, environmental, and physical interactions will not become addicts.

When someone is addicted to a drug, people who believe in social recovery attempt to correct all of the issues that a person has and heal the whole person rather than just the addiction. They use education, community intervention, and medication to heal the addiction. This allows the addict to recover their life rather than just recover from the addiction.

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Social recovery works when a person is in a position to become financially, socially, and mentally stable. If something prevents that from happening such as an underlying untreated mental illness, social recovery will not work.

This is why those that believe in social recovery sponsor education programs, job training, and other programs that promote social change in the community rather than just working with addiction recovery. If the community itself does not change social recovery might not work.

Why does Social Recovery Work for Opiate Addiction?

Finding Help and Social Recovery Treatment

If you want to find a clinic that offers social recovery all you have to do is call us at (800) 407-7195. We can help you find the program you need and the treatment that you want. You do not have to continue to let the addiction rule your life.

the Take-Away

Social recovery is one of many treatment options for those struggling with addiction. By addressing the person as a whole, and not just their addiction, it is believed that they’ll have a better chance at long-term abstinence.