Substance abuse can be devastating. Anyone suffering from substance abuse or who loves someone suffering from substance abuse would agree.

At least one in ten people in America suffer from substance abuse. That’s more than 20 million people – not including those who are directly or indirectly affected by their disease.

Substance abuse can be devastating because it affects every area of life. Substance abuse affects:

  • The brain
  • Judgment and decision-making
  • The body
  • Physical health
  • Mental health
  • The community
  • Society
  • Relationships
  • Families
  • Parenting skills

What Causes Substance Abuse?

Substance abuse is complex. A common misconception is that a lack of self-control or will-power causes it. Another misconception is that substance abuse is caused by bad choices by weak morality. These misunderstandings are not the cause of substance abuse.

Even though substance abuse is complex, we do know some factors can predispose a person to substance abuse. Those factors include:

  • Biology: Genetics account for about 50% of a person’s risk for drug addiction.
  • Environment: Significant factors that increase a person’s risk for drug abuse are a history of sexual, emotional, psychological, or physical abuse. Other environmental risk factors include peer pressure, the way they were parented, and stress levels.
  • Development: The earlier in life a person uses a substance, the more likely it will lead to addiction.

Can Substance Abuse Be Cured?

Substance abuse treatment isn’t a cure since it’s a chronic disease similar to diabetes or asthma.

Despite this, correct treatment can help successfully manage substance. A successful treatment plan will include many support systems including

Why Substance Abuse Counseling is Effective

Substance abuse is a disease that has a high rate of relapse long after the physical addiction is gone. This is partly because changes in the brain can make it extremely difficult for a person to resist a substance despite knowing negative consequences will happen. Counseling helps to retrain the brain for sobriety.

Stress, psychological, and social triggers can all lead to relapse. Studies reveal that substance abuse counseling is beneficial to help people manage stress well. Counselors teach people tools to manage triggers when they happen successfully. This increases success and dramatically reduces the risk of relapses.

Substance abuse counseling can include a combination of individual counseling, family counseling, or group counseling. This combination can all take place inpatient or outpatient depending on what is best for the affected person.

Substance abuse doesn’t happen in a vacuum. People who are addicted are affected by and affect their relationships and social surroundings. This interconnectedness is why substance abuse counselors facilitate family and group therapy in addition to individual counseling. Group therapy is crucial because people can receive support and be challenged by peers who understand what they are going through. Group therapy develops a connection, which is an essential element of substance abuse recovery.

LifeStance Health provides confidential counseling in a non-judgmental format. With individual counseling, our therapists help you understand underlying factors that may contribute to substance abuse. We help you build on your strengths and set new, healthy life goals. LifeStance Health understands the family is vital to your successful recovery, and family therapy is a valuable part of an effective treatment program. We embrace the Family Therapeutic Model and strive to include all family members. Call us today for a confidential appointment.