Although group therapy and self-help programs can be very valuable in recovery from alcohol and substance abuse, these strategies work best when combined with one-on-one sessions with a psychologist who understands the unique issues of addiction and recovery. Individual therapy can reinforce and amplify the work done in group sessions while also helping to accelerate your progress.
Individual therapy provides certain benefits that group therapy alone does not, including:
- Individualized assistance with psychological issues that may be intertwined with your addiction and substance use.
- Greater attention to crises and motivational issues that arise during recovery, especially in the early stages.
- A secure setting to discuss sensitive issues, such as relationships, sex and self-esteem.
Some people write off individual psychotherapy as unnecessary, but it can substantially enhance your recovery and make it easier to stay committed to treatment. The benefits of individual therapy can extend far beyond your initial period of abstinence, helping you to better cope with stressful life circumstances and emotional issues without returning to alcohol or other drug use.
Even if you manage to remain abstinent, relieving the many problems caused by drug use, you may find that underlying emotional problems only become sharper when the veil of substance use has been lifted. Many people strive consciously to remain abstinent, but still experience a gravitational pull that leads them back to alcohol/drug use.
Individual therapy can help you bring these underlying issues out into the open and so you have a chance to deal with them more effectively. By learning about the factors that lead to your addiction instead of just how to stop using, it becomes easier to maintain your recovery over the long-term. Individual therapy offers a way to look deeper into the role that your substance use has played in your life, including the ways you used it to self-medicate other problems.
Whether you struggle with alcohol, opioids, cocaine or other drugs, individual therapy can increase your chances of successful recovery.