Psychoeducation is one of the therapies offered at Step Away Rehabilitation Centre in South Africa. We believe that addiction recovery is made possible through equipping individuals with the tools they need to understand themselves and their addiction. These tools are fundamental to overcoming addiction and the behaviours, thought patterns and belief systems that lead people to substance abuse.
In this article, we explain what psychoeducation is and how it is beneficial for addiction recovery.
Psychoeducation combines emotional psychology and cognitive behavioural counselling to help individuals understand their addiction and where it comes from.
Rather than trying to directly address the symptoms of the addiction, psychoeducation aims to help individuals develop tools to maintain a life of sobriety. It helps them understand their triggers.
Additionally, individuals are taught important life skills which help them throughout their recovery and beyond, allowing them the opportunity to return to a life without addiction.
Psychoeducational sessions are designed to work with the individual, their unique circumstances, and life experiences. This understanding opens up the doorways to greater understanding, acceptance, and forgiveness, all of which are crucial to the addiction recovery process.
At Step Away, our psychoeducational sessions are aimed at the following:
Being able to communicate your feelings is an essential part of addiction recovery. Most often than not, people who struggle with addiction feel isolated, and people who feel isolated often turn to substances to deal with the pain they are experiencing. It’s a continuous cycle which can be broken with the ability to openly express emotions and communicate feelings within a safe space.
The ability to say a stern and confident “no” is a skill many individuals struggle with. This can lead anyone down a destructive path. During our sessions, we help our clients to develop the confidence to turn away from anything that can lead to relapse.
In some people, a lack of healthy relationships can build the foundation for substance abuse. This can stem from early childhood, or it can be a matter of mingling with the “wrong crowd” in adolescence or adulthood. Either way, when someone doesn’t know what a healthy relationship looks like, it’s difficult for them to identify that these relationships are detrimental to them. On the other hand, broken relationships among friends and family are often the result of addiction. In psychoeducational therapy, we help individuals understand what healthy relationships look and feel like and we help them figure out how to rebuild relationships destroyed because of addiction.
As we know, stress is a part of life and many people have not been taught to cope with stress in a healthy way. It’s common for people to use substances to “forget” about their worries but this is a dangerous habit that can lead to serious consequences. In our psychoeducational therapy sessions, we help individuals develop healthy coping mechanisms to deal with the inevitable stress that life has to offer. This plays a key role in avoiding relapse. We cannot avoid stress, but we can find ways to manage it that are not detrimental to our wellbeing.
Lack of self-worth is a common theme among people who struggle with addiction. Like stress, substances can help us forget about our low self-esteem by giving us confidence, lowering inhibitions, and the ability to socialize with ease. This can feel like a major relief for people who struggle with these things when sober. However, the reality is that the relief offered by substances is only temporary, and they come back when the substances wear off, often more amplified than before. Psychoeducational therapy helps individuals discover their worth so that they don’t feel the need to look for it in harmful habits.
At Step Away, we believe that addressing the issue of addiction requires a holistic approach. For this reason, we incorporate various treatments and therapies in our treatment program, including psychoeducational therapy.
To find out more about our addiction treatment therapies, please feel free to contact us.
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