Health & Wellness

The Benefits of Family Therapy in Drug Rehab

Benefits of Family Therapy in Drug Rehab Posted On
Posted By Emma Aaron

Going through rehab is already an emotionally and physically exhausting process, even more so if you’re doing it all alone.

Studies show that treatment that involves family therapy is more effective than treatment that does not, and it can lower relapse rates, increase treatment adherence, help minimize symptoms, and reduce anxiety.

The benefits of family therapy in drug rehab can be instrumental to the success of your rehab journey.

Also read: How to Helping Someone Recovering from Addiction

Addiction Affects Everyone

When a person suffers from substance use disorder, it doesn’t just affect them but everyone close to them too. Addiction and the dynamic it creates in the home can sabotage relationships that surround it. Family members of drug addicts may experience emotional distress, anger, guilt, fear, and more.

Addiction also has a significant impact on children in the home. Exposure to substance misuse in the household disrupts a child’s natural development and puts them at risk for physical, mental, and emotional issues. Children who have a parent who is addicted to drugs or alcohol, generally struggle in school. They are more likely than their classmates to have learning disabilities, miss school, or be expelled. They’re also more likely to become a victim of addiction themselves.

Also read: Benefits of Meditation in Recovery from Addiction

Overcoming Hurdles

There are many hurdles that families have to overcome when they are dealing with a family member who is struggling with addiction.

Initially, it’s very difficult to acknowledge that your loved one is battling addiction because of the social stigma and emotional turmoil that come with it. It’s often easier to just ignore the problem than to face it head-on.

Enabling actions, whether motivated by love or fear, assist a family member’s substance misuse by reducing consequences. This makes it easier for them to continue using, which is harmful to the enabler, the addict, and the family structure.

If all the effort and attention is directed towards the family member struggling with addiction, it leaves room for your other family members to be neglected. A common example of this is child neglect. One parent may be struggling with addiction and the other parent may be caught up in helping them. This can cause a severe disbalance in the family dynamic and result in long-term psychological effects on the children.

Also read: Why Teens Are More Susceptible To Drug Use And Addiction

What is Family Therapy

A professional licensed therapist, social worker, or a psychologist generally provides family therapy. Family therapy is a psychotherapy designed to decrease any communication gaps that occur due to addiction, while also offering improvement of interpersonal issues that have been disturbing the family.

As the name suggests, family therapy can include all the members of the family. Anyone who is willing to take part can attend. This kind of therapy especially caters to teaching the different members on how to deal with tough situations and problematic circumstances. This continues even after the therapy has been concluded.

Family therapy has many objectives:

  • Facilitate communication
  • Help everyone see how addiction has affected them
  • Aid accountability and acknowledgment by the person who has Drug Use Disorder
  • To rebuild trust and bring about healing for everyone involved
  • Support the reconstruction of a familial support system for the person in recovery

Family therapy reduces the likelihood of relapse and helps increase the chances of long-term recovery. When there are fewer emotional triggers around loved ones, and someone to support you on your journey, it is easier to stay clean.

Expectations From Family Therapy

In order for family therapy to be successful, everyone involved has to put in a lot of effort and be fully committed to the process. Family therapy is a hands-on process and requires a great deal of time to show long term benefits. This can take many weeks and even several months at a time.

The family members need to be open to change. Counsellors teach the family members ways to communicate and work on problems together as a unit which helps them heal, elevate their family dynamic, and provide better support for the client’s recovery.

It teaches how to stay consistent and helps the client set behavioral objectives that promote abstinence from all substances.

Goal setting is also widely used in therapy. Parents set goals in order to improve their parenting, siblings set goals in order to fulfil their roles as siblings. Everyone has a part to play in a family therapy setting and can gain a lot from it.

Summary

The benefits of family therapy in drug addiction cannot be overstated. Everyone can find healing and support in their own way.

#1 Addiction extends beyond just the life of the person suffering from substance abuse and needs to be treated as such.

#2 Family therapy can resolve many issues and can help address how the family has been affected by the addiction.

#3 Strengthening family dynamics and creating a strong safety net relies on family therapy sought during drug rehab.

#4 Goal setting can be the cornerstone of success with family therapy.

#5 If everyone is open to it, family therapy can help strengthen family bonds and facilitate healing.

Family therapy during drug rehab requires a great deal of patience, hard work, emotional labor, and openness. But it is all worth it in the end.

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