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drug Intervention Techniques

Intervention Techniques

There are many addiction intervention services available for helping your loved one cope with substance abuse. While creating a standardized technique or model of treatment for every addict is tempting, a successful intervention program must take into account the unique circumstance of the individual. Here is a brief overview of the major intervention models to help you decide which model will be most effective for you.

The Johnson Model

The Johnson model is the traditional conceptualization of an intervention. The addict’s friends and family gather in a room and call the addict for a meeting, during which they confront the individual about his or her behaviour and how it is causing harm to others. The idea of this method is to pull the addict out of self-denial and get them to seek treatment, and the entire process is overseen by an experienced interventionist.

While this method may be effective, it also has the potential to cause more harm than good. According to recent studies, intervention methods that use shame and pressure can cause the addict to relapse or break contact with the friends and family involved.

The Invitational Model

The invitational model is a straightforward intervention model that is similar to the Johnson model. This model, however, removes the surprise component of the Johnson model. In this technique, the friends and family of the addict arrange a workshop with the interventionist and the addict is invited to the workshop. During the invitation, all the information about the workshop is disclosed to the addict so they are aware of what will happen at the meeting. It is up to the addict whether or not they wish to attend, and the workshop will occur with or without the addict.

The Field Model

The field model is a combination of the Johnson model and the invitational model, and is designed to be easily adaptable to many situations. This model is useful particularly if the addict has the potential to be violent or if the intervention needs to be put together quickly. It allows the therapist to make decisions based on the unique circumstances of the individual struggling with addiction and therefore is very useful in mitigating negative responses.

Systemic Intervention Model

Confrontational intervention methods are not always useful, especially if the addict is hostile or defensive. In such cases, the systemic intervention model is the preferred technique. During a meeting with the therapist, the addict’s friends and family discusses how each member contributes to the addicts continued use of substances. In this model, the emphasis is placed on how the friends and family can support the addict, rather than forcing the addict to confront their problem.

Motivational Interviewing

The motivational interviewing model focuses more on counseling the addict through conversation than on strategy. The goal of this technique is to encourage the addict to make positive changes in their behaviour by having the therapist guide the addict through a productive conversation, during which the therapist offers empathy to the addict.

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