Support Groups as a Path to Recovery and Abstinence
The initial detox and withdrawal from opiates is painful and can be deadly. This step of the recovery process should be monitored by professionals and, if possible, gone through at treatment facilities that specialize in opiate addiction. These facilities provide a safe place for the individual to come off of opiates and begin their recovery. After detox, the former user has options as to what the next step in their recovery will be. Support groups are often a part of this continuing process.
Support groups help the recovering addict find a place to belong and make human connections. Opiate addiction is often based on an emotional element, and as the opiate user recovers from addiction there will be feelings that need to be addressed and confronted. These are not always emotions an individual may be comfortable sharing with friends and family.
Support groups provide a place to voice these feelings, and, as the people in support groups have gone through a similar experience, the former user can find others who understand their problems and will not judge actions or emotions. Support groups also provide a space to work on social skills that often disappear during addiction. The recovering user can find a positive community and friends who are sober, as old friends may still be addicts and the connection to them may be lost. Support groups have been proven effective and those who participate, share their stories, and provide support to others going through similar struggles have increased success in their own abstinence.
How to Find the Right Support Group for Opiate Addiction
Not all support groups are the same, and the recovering opiate user should choose one that suits them best. Programs such as Narcotics Anonymous follow a 12-step program, in which the recovering user gains a sponsor and an emphasis is placed on spiritual elements of recovery. 12-step support groups are the most widely available but may not be for everyone. Other types of support groups can do the following:
- Emphasize meditation rather than spiritualism
- Emphasize a secular and cognitive approach to abstinence
- Exist on-line and provide resources towards finding in-person support
Support groups are part of a self-help system and can be an important tool towards opiate addiction recovery. There are many resources for the recovering user, and if support groups are not the right one, or are not enough in and of themselves and need to be used in conjunction with other forms of therapy and counseling, the individual should not hesitate to seek out the means of recovery that will work for them.
Need Help Finding Support Groups for Opiate Addiction?
If you or a loved one has an opiate abuse problem, please call our toll-free number. We are available to help 24 hours a day and can provide information about support groups, addiction treatment, and steps towards recovery. Don’t let addiction control your life, call us today.