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Individual Therapy for Addiction Treatment

For a long time, therapists and researchers have been trying to find ways to manage individuals with addiction effectively. Substance use or addiction is the misuse of certain prescription drugs, opioids or narcotics, alcohol, and other harmful drugs. Addiction lifts the mood and changes the thinking pattern of the addict. The World Health Organization describes addictive drugs as psychoactive substances that interfere with everyday activities.

Data shows that alcohol addiction was the seventh most significant cause of young deaths in 2016. Substance abuse is considered to be a growing problem in women. In 2019, 9.5 percent of pregnant women were alcohol addicts. In addition, studies suggest that substance use is one of the leading causes of liver failure.

Many social and personal reasons lead to the use of substance abuse, like; childhood abuse, financial difficulties, easy access to addictive drugs, family negligence, and depression. Although addiction is incurable, managing the symptoms and associated mental or physical impairments is entirely possible.


There is a range of therapies available for a complete recovery from addiction. It involves individual, family, and group therapy and an integrated treatment combining essential steps of individual and group treatments. Unique addiction treatment is one of the most effective ways to ensure recovery with fewer chances of a relapse.

What is Individualized Addiction Therapy?

Individual therapy in substance use involves one or more therapists for a single person struggling with addiction. Managing the individual's withdrawal and recovery may take a few more sessions. Medication and behavioral therapies work side by side toward the stable recovery of the individual.

Individual addiction treatment is available for out-patients not in medical rehabilitation facilities and in-patients who are admitted. Individual therapy has shown great potential in treating addicts who are young, old, and have suicidal or criminal tendencies. Addiction recovery through individualized treatment is a personalized way of therapy. The counselor and addict establish a strong and confidential relationship in this treatment.

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Expert Contributor

Dr. Williams presently serves on the board of Directors for two non-profit service organizations. He holds a Master’s degree in Human Services from Lincoln University, Philadelphia, Pa, and a Ph.D. with a concentration in Clinical Psychology from Union Institute and University. In Cincinnati, Ohio. He is licensed to practice addictions counseling in both New Jersey and Connecticut and has a pending application as a practicing Psychologist in New Jersey.

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Rolling Hills Recovery Centers Individual Treatment

A balanced approach toward speedy recovery in individual therapy follows multiple techniques. Following are some of the effective types of individual therapy:

Cognitive Behavioral Therapy CBT

CBT is most effective in treating addiction. It helps the individual to take part in deciding a plan for recovery without being judged. In addition, CBT helps the individual to learn social and communication skills, modify behavior, stay motivated through incentives and readjust to the environment. Studies show that around 60% of individuals showed clean laboratory tests after a 52-week cognitive behavioral therapy treatment plan.


Motivational Interventions or Motivational Interviews


Starting individual treatment may be easy, but sticking to it for a long time can be challenging. To have a successful intervention, ensure that the individual follows the scheduled sessions regularly; motivational interventions such as motivational interviews are essential. It involves a direct dialogue between the therapist and the recovering individual.

This method uses verbal techniques to influence the addict and serves as a source of continuous support. This enhances a person's motivation to recover successfully during individual therapy.

Contingency Management

This technique uses material benefits such as gift vouchers and prizes given to the recovering individual as a reward. In addition, individual treatment with contingency management helps decrease relapse chances. Studies suggest that this therapy helps addicts in recovering from substance use of opioids, cocaine, and alcohol.

Dialectical Therapy

This individual behavioral treatment trains the individual to control his emotions of anger, stress, and fear. It reduces the chances of violence and teaches mindfulness to the addict. Dialectical therapy improves the overall skill of individuals to maintain healthy social and personal relationships.

Relapse Prevention

Another individual therapy in addiction involves the prevention of relapse by enabling the individual to make informed decisions. Such decisions are essential in vulnerable situations where the recovering individual might get triggered. For example, this method teaches the individual to be aware of social gatherings where substance abuse is common.

12-Step Facilitation Therapy

It is a stepwise process involving close family members to support the recovering individual. Group support improves individual progress. This thoughtfully designed process needs small steps to achieve the desired goal. 12-step therapy combines groups and spirituality to support the recovering individual.

Rational Emotive Behavior Therapy 

This individual therapy is based on the idea that true happiness comes from within, and no external force can control it. It strengthens the individual's ability to cope with depression and anxiety. Having control over oneself leads to a sense of pride, self-respect, and motivation.


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Benefits of Individualized Treatment


Individual therapy tends to change the attitude of the recovering person. It adds hope, enlightens the mind, and calms high-pitched nerves. This positivity results in improved self-confidence and high self-esteem.


The trustful relationship between the counselor and the person is the reason for sobriety. In addition, recovered individuals are shown to have significantly increased resistance to relapse.


Individual treatment helps in maintaining a healthy body and mind. It improves productivity at the workplace and decreases family conflicts and longevity. As a result, people live an everyday life after recovery and gain back respect from their family and social circle.



Addiction destroys an individual's belief system; therapists ask individuals to pray and start believing in a divine force during individual treatment. Praying helps in the detoxification phase during the recovery and also brings much-needed satisfaction.

In the end, recovery from substance use takes a more extended period. It needs commitment and continuous support during individual treatment. Therapists and individuals must work in mutual understanding as they progress through the individualized treatment plan. And above all, keeping faith in the process of recovery and oneself is all it takes to get back to everyday life.

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What is individualized addiction therapy?
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