Group Counseling for Treating Substance Use Disorders

Group Counseling for Treating Substance Use Disorders

At Absolute Awakenings, we place a heavy emphasis on utilizing group counseling as a predominant part of our overall program of addiction recovery. 

Not only is group therapy and counseling an extremely effective component of most addiction treatment programs, but it is also a tool that is commonly used as a part of continuous aftercare – and one that has proven extremely effective in the maintenance of long-term sobriety. In most inpatient or residential drug and alcohol rehab facilities, group counseling will be utilized in conjunction with a wide range of other therapeutic modalities, including individual therapy and family therapy. Treatment programs as a whole should incorporate holistic and medicinal treatment when necessary – though the holistic components that are taught during inpatient treatment will pave the way for a lifetime of fulfilled sobriety. 

This type of counseling has several different forms. It can come in the form of group therapy sessions, support groups, or groups like Alcoholics Anonymous and other 12 step programs that specifically focus on continued recovery from substances. Depending on your personal needs, continuing with group counseling after your initial treatment program will prove extremely beneficial. Many resources confirm that group therapy and counseling is an essential component of successful substance abuse, addiction, and mental health treatment.

Group Counseling for Treating Substance Use Disorders

Why is Group Counseling Important?

Group therapy is extremely beneficial for several reasons. While individual therapy is also important, group therapy has some different benefits. For example, individual therapy allows a patient to open up without fear of peer judgment. On the other hand, facing the fear of peer judgment ultimately builds self-esteem and fosters healthy and lasting peer relationships. Some additional advantages of group counseling include:

  • Group leaders can cater to the specific needs of the group, collectively teaching them important facts, skills, and coping mechanisms. 
  • Peers within the group can provide one another with support, encouragement, and motivation. It is also true that if an individual in the group makes a mistake and shares about it, other members of the group are more liable to learn from that mistake without having to make it themselves. 
  • Peers work together to develop problem-solving skills. 
  • It has been found that offering effective support to other members of the group helps to build self-esteem and feelings of self-worth. Encouraging others feels good. 
  • Meeting regularly with a counseling group will help to enforce structure and build a routine. The same goes for all structured therapeutic sessions in inpatient treatment, and outside of treatment. The skills of structure that are learned in inpatient treatment in group therapy sessions will translate to skills that are carried over into independent living, and structure will be maintained in 12 step programs. 
  • Those who regularly participate in group counseling sessions will likely develop relationships with their peers – relationships that will ultimately teach them how to be supportive and healthy friends. 
  • Because one group counselor or therapist will be facilitating an entire group, individuals will have more regular access to the therapeutic services they need. 
  • It is proven that positive behavior modification occurs more quickly in a group setting. 

Absolute Awakenings Counseling

Because no two experiences with drug and/or alcohol addiction are the same, no two journeys of addiction recovery should be identical. However, at Absolute Awakenings, we incorporate group counseling into every one of our highly individualized treatment programs. We understand the value of group counseling, and we sincerely believe that every one of our clients can benefit from meeting with a group of like-minded peers regularly, and sharing struggles and triumphs in a safe and supportive environment. To learn more about Absolute Awakenings and our comprehensive program of addiction recovery, please reach out today. We are looking forward to speaking with you soon and answering any questions you may have.