Why is Therapy Essential for Treating Addiction?

Struggling with substance abuse can take a physical, mental, and emotional toll on the individual and their support system. Addiction is a disease that can be frustrating, overwhelming, and very disheartening. When the time comes for you or your loved one to put an end to addiction, we highly recommend using addiction therapy as a tool in the recovery process. 

Therapy is an essential part of addiction treatment, as it can help you develop positive relationships, recognize triggers for substance consumption, work on relapse prevention strategies, and treat past traumas that may be contributing to the addiction, all the while equipping you with the necessary tools to overcome life’s challenges in a healthy way.

During therapy, addiction is treated as a medical condition, and not a reason for public shame. Therapy offers individuals a safe space that is devoid of judgment or prejudice, and allows individuals to discuss their journey with addiction from their unique perspective. 


Addiction Therapy Can Help on the Path to Recovery

Addiction therapy is an essential tool to help you adhere to your path to recovery and long term sobriety – even when your physical dependence has passed. Numerous social and psychological factors may complicate recovery. Examples include:


    • Stress
    • Social occasions, such as birthdays and family celebrations
    • Environmental stimuli, like visiting a certain place or neighborhood that you equate with your habit


These are just some of the factors that can resuscitate your urge to begin to consume a substance again. Counseling provides you with the tools and solutions needed to cope with life without reverting back to your addictive habits. It can also help you manage your cravings during challenging and stressful times.


Develop a Therapeutic Alliance with Counselors

Divulging secrets to someone who feels like a stranger can be difficult at first. It can take a lot of time to trust your counselor enough to share sensitive information. It is important to experience addiction therapy with a counselor who is a great fit for you. 

A strong therapeutic alliance is a major tenet of therapy. When you find the right therapist for treatment, developing a therapeutic alliance can improve your comfort level, aiding you through your recovery process. You will have someone to touch base with when you are feeling challenged or wanting to celebrate your journey to recovery!


Counseling Provides a Therapeutic Toolbox for Success

In the process of treating addiction it can be difficult to navigate life’s natural challenges. Something as simple as visiting an old neighborhood or seeing an old friend has the potential to trigger the need to use drugs or alcohol. Drug and alcohol counseling and other addiction therapies are thoughtfully planned and personalized to help you meet your goals. 

Psychologists and mental health professionals, like those at Be Psychology, tailor their treatments to help individuals learn positive coping mechanisms, healthy boundaries, and important communication skills that will assist them on their road to recovery from substance abuse. Think of it as a “toolbox for success!”


Develop a Preventative Relapse Plan

According to the United Nations, “35 million people worldwide suffer from drug use disorders while only 1 in 7 people receive treatment.” However, research shows that the longer an individual stays sober, the less likely they are to relapse. This means that developing a preventative plan for relapse can play an important role to your success. Together, you and your therapist will identify natural supports, triggers, and a myriad of other important things to help tailor your preventative relapse plan to meet your needs. Because the chance of relapse is high, it is possible that you may need to revisit this plan to alter it as needed. An effective relapse plan may include:


    • A contact list of your support network to call when needed 
    • Details of substance abuse and previous relapse triggers (if any)
    • A list of outside resources and support services


At Be Psychology, our team of therapists and psychologists are trained to help our clients treat their addiction along with any coinciding mental health concerns. If you or a loved one are battling an addiction, we can help. 


reem shaheen counseling psychologist


Reem Shaheen – LMHC