Can I Attend a 12-step Group as My Only Form of Treatment?

Some people do attend a 12-step group as their only form of treatment. However, these programs are usually meant to be a supplemental treatment option for those who receive help from them. If you are considering attending 12-step group meetings as your only treatment for addiction, ask yourself if this will be enough for your safe and effective recovery.

How Should 12-step Programs Be Used as Treatment?

According to the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration, “Although generally characterized as aftercare, 12-step-based programs are sufficient treatment for millions of people, young and old, around the world.” Many people can benefit from 12-step meetings, whether as aftercare or actual addiction treatment, although it is often sensible to use these programs in conjunction with other treatment options as well.

  • 12-step groups provide social support, which is extremely important to recovery, as well as a number of other benefits, but these programs have a “notable lack of research” compared to other options.
  • Medication can be used in conjunction with 12-step programs to manage the physical and psychological withdrawal symptoms associated with recovery as well as other issues caused by former drug abuse, making it easier for the individual to focus on their meetings.
  • Sometimes, a person may not be able to share extremely personal feelings in a group setting, which is why individualized drug counseling is a wonderful partner to 12-step groups. People can attend both of these treatments and get the benefits of each.

    Attend a 12-step Group

    Some individuals benefit enough from 12-step groups that they don’t require any other treatment.

Normally, it is much safer and more beneficial to use 12-step programs alongside other, evidence-based approaches. However, these groups “have for nearly three decades been the most prevalent model of treatment,” and in many cases, the only program certain individuals have required.

Can I Attend a 12-step Group as My Only Form of Treatment?

You may be able to do so if you feel the program provides you with everything you need to have a safe and well-rounded recovery. Also, if you do not have a severe dependence on the substance you were abusing, you may not require intensive, inpatient treatment or pharmacological intervention in addition to the program.

Many people find 12-step groups to be enough, especially because the programs are flexible, free, and easily found all over the country. Still, there are a number of formal treatment programs that are low-cost and even free and can provide patients with options that are beneficial in addition to 12-step group meetings right at the facility.

Should I Attend a 12-step Group as My Only Form of Treatment?

Generally, most individuals should have a well-rounded treatment program, either put into place by a doctor or discussed with a counselor to reflect all the needs of the person. If you believe all you need is a 12-step group, you may want to consider your other options and see if they are readily available and may be beneficial to you as well. If the program works for you, though, and you do not require any other type of treatment, you may be able to fully recover from addiction using on the 12-step methods and attending meetings.

12 Steps or Standard Treatment: What’s the Difference?

If you would like to learn more about the program or find a meeting in your area, call 888-905-9004 today.

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