group therapy for addiction treatment

Overcoming an addiction involves many steps. It usually begins with detox and then moves on to treatment in a residential or outpatient facility. Treatment includes a variety of therapies and services, all designed to help you succeed. Besides individual therapy, you can also benefit from a strong group therapy program and the support it offers. In group therapy at a Los Angeles drug rehab, you can learn and grow from peers who know what you are going through because they have gone through it themselves.

What is Group Therapy? 

The most beneficial types of psychotherapy are the ones that comprehensively meet a patient’s needs. Many forms of therapy exist that work differently for every individual, but in what way, and to what extent? 

Sometimes the best resources are the ones where people can connect with others who have had similar experiences, which in return helps them cope with their conditions and stay on the path to recovery. This is called group therapy. 

Group therapy is a form of support and therapy that utilizes the component of personal interaction for people going through common experiences, such as addiction. There are various types of group therapy, including grief counseling, PTSD support, etc. 

While it is true that the main purpose of most therapy sessions is to allow individuals to gain a sense of peace and control over their lives, the goal of group therapy is a little different than other types of individualized therapy. 

The goal or main philosophy of care surrounding group therapy is that it is beneficial for people who are working through major issues that affect a large group of people, such as addiction. 

Support is a major component of group therapy. As part of a larger therapeutic strategy, people who engage in this type of therapy benefit the most when they are encouraged to be a part of something bigger than themselves. 

Benefits of A Group Therapy Program

Participating in a group therapy program can positively impact your addiction treatment because it provides a supportive environment where you do not have to feel alone. Going through the recovery journey can be somewhat easier when you realize that there are others who understand what you are going through. And while you receive help from your peers, you can also help them by sharing your own struggles and successes. Group addiction therapy in Los Angeles can also provide a safe space where you can share your feelings and concerns. Finally, group therapy can offer an opportunity to socialize and build positive interpersonal relationships.

Types of Group Therapy Models

According to SAMHSA, there are five types of group therapy models used during addiction treatment. A group therapy program might use one, several or all types as part of the treatment plan. The five types include:

  • Support groups
  • Cognitive-behavioral groups focused on problem-solving
  • Interpersonal process groups
  • Psychoeducational groups
  • Skills development groups

In group addiction therapy at a Los Angeles treatment center, therapists work with you to develop a personalized treatment plan that includes the group therapy models that can best support your recovery journey. In psychoeducational groups, you learn about substance abuse, the behaviors associated with it, and the consequences of those behaviors. Cognitive-behavioral groups seek to help you identify and modify the behaviors that were factors in the development of your addiction.

Skills development groups focus on teaching you the skills you need to avoid relapse so you can continue with your recovery journey. Interpersonal process groups help you heal and change by addressing difficult relationship patterns. Support groups can be used at any point in the recovery journey, but their purpose remains the same: to support you so you can keep your focus on your sobriety. During support group sessions, you might talk about the day-to-day struggles of keeping sober and other challenges.

Goal Setting in Group Therapy

The philosophy of care within group therapy states that talking about similar yet different experiences helps people go through major problems, by sharing, bonding, and coping. 

Therefore, setting specific goals during addiction treatment is crucial for various reasons, as it gives individuals something to work toward and helps them look forward to a specific outcome. Having goals also helps boost self-esteem and motivation, two essential components for maintaining optimal recovery and sobriety. 

When you go to an addiction treatment facility to get sober and maintain it, your tailored regimen for recovery will include setting some major personal goals. A goal is defined as something that you want to accomplish in a tangible, measurable way. 

While there is no one-size-fits-all approach, there are three major goals that addiction treatment centers apply during group therapy to help people meet their specific needs. These goals include:

Process Goals 

During group therapy, the goals created that relate to understanding what actions a person with an addiction has to take to recover are called process goals. This is the behaviors/strategy type of goal setting. 

This is where people define what they have to accomplish to achieve larger-scale goals. An example of this would be I want to become sober and maintain sobriety through attending therapy sessions and learning coping strategies. 

Performance Goals

During group therapy, performance goals are setting standards and the type of results that they want to see happen in the end. In addiction recovery, performance goals are the mid-term goals. In terms of addiction, to think about achieving outcomes, this can include attending a certain amount of therapy sessions in a week to stay motivated and centered.  

Outcome Goals

During group therapy, outcome goals are the thought changes and behavioral changes that people define that they want to achieve during and after recovery. Outcome goals are something people want to achieve in the end. Some examples of outcome goals could be, “I want to recover and prevent relapse,” or “I want to be able to cope with my emotions better and learn resources to avoid triggers.”

The most important and fundamental goal of group therapy is to create a sense of belonging, relatability, and understanding through sharing common experiences with a large group of people. More than anything, group therapy is a form of support. Additional goals of group therapy include, but are not limited to:

  • Helping individuals in a group setting identify their negative thoughts and behavioral patterns 
  • Providing an outlet and opportunity to express emotional difficulties through encouragement and positive feedback
  • Offering guidance with people who are going through similar life experiences
  • Reducing feelings of loneliness, depression, and loneliness

The Principles of Group Therapy

As mentioned above, group therapy is a main resource for people suffering from addiction. This type of support therapy is for individuals who are going through extremely difficult experiences who are hoping to learn how to cope, move forward from the past, and shape a better future. 

In other words, every group therapy session regardless of its focus aims to help participants achieve a more healthy future of recovery and sobriety. The idea behind group therapy sessions is that individuals may find connections with other people who have had similar experiences with themselves, a family member, a friend, etc. 

For people coping with a multifaceted issue, such as addiction, it is often beneficial for individuals at any stage to meet other people going through similar circumstances. It can help with emotions, such as guilt, grief, embarrassment, which often occur as a result of going through addiction. 

The principles of group therapy come into play here. Seeing another person who has gone through a similar problem and becomes a better person for it can incite hope and encouragement in recovering addicts. Most importantly, group therapy presents the opportunity for the success of proven coping strategies. 

Therapy is a cathartic release that talking to family members or friends may not be able to provide. The principles and main philosophy of group therapy include: 

  • Hope
  • Support
  • Connection and Common Ground
  • Universality  
  • Interpersonal Learning 
  • Cathartic Release 

For group therapy to be deemed successful, it must be facilitated by mental health and addiction specialists who can effectively manage a group of people through serious topics of conversation, leading them to a path of healing and recovery. 

Evidence-Based Therapies to Treat Addiction

A treatment plan designed around your needs includes therapies such as a group therapy program as well as a variety of evidence-based services supported by science. These services also provide you with the tools and skills you need to recover from addiction. At group addiction therapy Los Angeles, treatment includes services such as:

Group Therapy Takeaways

A major takeaway to consider when choosing group therapy is that it helps people recognize that they are not alone. It also helps them find their voices as they work through major difficulties on their path to addiction recovery. 

Most importantly, joining a group of like-minded individuals with a shared outlook and fresh perspectives can encourage people to relate to others in healthier ways. This will help them grow personally and effectively cope with their addiction and mental illness. 

LA Detox Can Help You Recover

Addiction therapy programs at a Los Angeles treatment center are designed to help you succeed in your recovery journey. At our luxury, five-star facility, you have a safe space to seek the help you need. You also have access to a supportive community of professionals and peers to guide and help you through your journey.

Addiction recovery can be long and lonely, but you don’t have to travel that road alone. Choose a treatment plan with a strong group therapy program, quality evidence-based services, and a supportive environment. Contact us today and begin your recovery journey.