Methods of Therapy

Methods of Therapy

Methods of Therapy


Understanding methods of therapy can help counselors find the etiology of different types of addictions. Causes of addiction vary from one addict to another, so no single model is sufficient to explain why some individuals have addictive behavior and are more prone to substance use as compared to others. Counselors have to encounter clients from various cultures having different sets of values and beliefs. Moreover, clients come with various problems, so it is important for the counselor to use different methods of therapy in accordance with the problem and treat them ethically during counseling sessions. Grasping the etiology of addictive behavior can assist in diagnosing the addiction and implementing the treatment plan. There are various methods of therapy that can be used in counseling. Here, we will discuss methods of therapy such as Public Health Models, Psychological Models, Family Models, and Biological Models.

Public Health Models

A public health model is an epidemiological approach that attempts to reduce a specific disorder or a social problem prevalent in a society by finding and classifying the risk indicators. The public health approach aims to prevent addiction problems from society by forming policies and using interventions that can help identify problems in order to minimize the long-term impacts of these problems.

It is a fact that interventions and financing by the government can help reduce the issue and ultimately ensure a healthy community. Measuring the impact of applied interventions will help find the success of this approach. The public health model aims to address the societal factors, which influence substance use and concerns related to addiction in order to improve the well-being and safety of the entire population. For example, drug-controlling institutions can educate children in schools and workers in the workplace about the hazards of drinking and make them aware of the possible harms of using synthetic drugs.

The public health model provides a good explanation of addiction, as it focuses on all aspects of addiction such as it focuses on identifying the risk factors, works involving both the public and private sectors, supports a wide range of implementation of authentic prevention plans and treatment interventions, and keeps on monitoring the impact of the applied interventions.

Psychological Models

Psychological Models provide comprehensive reasons for addiction based on the type of substance use. These models explain the behavioral causes of addiction because addiction is based on behavior. Psychological Models include the cognitive-behavioral model, psychodynamic model, and personality theory models. Psychological models explain features related to human behaviors, thoughts, and emotions. For example, the Cognitive Behavioral Model (CBT) explains the interconnection among human feelings, thoughts, actions, and physical sensations. Negative thoughts surely take humans in a negative cycle such as involvement in substance use addiction. Secondly, Psychodynamic theory helps counselors understand their clients’ patterns of behavior and emotions.

Psychological models help in finding out the association between a person’s mental state to his or her addiction. For example, a person’s dependence on substances can be found in his or her cognitive or behavioral tendencies. The human mind is a powerful tool that directs and shapes human actions. Addicted individuals cannot control their addiction quickly due to patterns formed in human cognition. Psychological models explain that some specific personality traits may have links that describe a person’s dependence on the type of substance. For example, adolescents often show a low tolerance for accepting the substance.

Psychological models are a good source of explaining addiction, as these concentrate on human behavior approaches involving compulsive or impulsive behaviors. Moreover, personality theorists argue that certain individuals are prone to addiction, so they are addicted personalities. Thus, psychological models explain personalities, which are based on their mind’s inclination. Counselors can use psychological models to diagnose and treat substance use disorders by studying human behaviors.

Family Models

Family Models focus on the role of the entire family as the addiction-causing source. All the family members play an important role in the way a family member functions. Genetic characteristics are not only the cause of addiction because the family environment has a significant effect on an individual. In a family model, the addicted person alone cannot control his or her addictive behavior because, in such an environment, most of the family members are addicted individuals. Thus, there is a need to conduct family counseling sessions involving all the family members in order to treat the addicted individuals.

Addicted parents have disturbed relations with their siblings, which changes their nurturing style. For example, when children of such a family experience rejection and feel a lack of emotions from their parents, they turn to addiction. Consequently, the entire family suffers because of one individual. In such a situation, a single individual’s treatment is not possible and it requires the diagnosis and treatment of all the individuals involved in addiction.

The Family Model is an effective technique to apply to an entire family. Moreover, family members not involved in the addiction can help their addicted family members come out of this troubled situation. In fact, family support is a big helpful factor in eradicating addiction.

Biological Models

Biological models focus on the role that genetic factors and biological forces play in addiction. Neurobiological models and genetic models are examples of biological models. The biological theories explain the brain structure, brain chemistry, and genetic abnormalities, which cause changes in human behavior. The biological model illustrates that people struggling with addiction in one generation can act as an originator for the next generation. Using this model, professionals such as counselors and therapists can see addiction in the genetic context by recording the history of their clients.

Modifications in genetic makeup change the family history, which can contribute to the development of mental health disorders. For example, children of alcohol-addicted parents can have more risk of using alcohol because of the alcoholic environment and changes occur in their genes due to the use of alcohol. On the other hand, the neurobiological model explains that some specific neurotransmitters play the role of a messenger. For example, addictive drugs such as cocaine send messages to the brain resulting in the release of some chemicals such as dopamine, which brings pleasure and brings changes in a person’s attitude due to changes in their brain structure.

Biological models provide a good explanation relating to addiction because understanding genetic changes can help reach the diagnosis and treatment success. Moreover, studying changes in brain chemistry may lead to producing disturbance in a person’s way of thinking. Therefore, understanding brain chemistry can help addiction counselors use mechanisms suitable for treatment.

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