Peer support is an essential part of recovery. According to the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA), “a therapy group in an intensive early recovery treatment setting might combine elements of psychoeducation (to show how drugs have ravaged the individual’s life), skills development (to help the client maintain abstinence), and support (to teach individuals how to relate to other group members in an honest and open fashion).”
At kathy ireland® Recovery Centers, we use a community environment and various activities, including group therapy, to encourage positive peer interactions.
Health Benefits of Peer Support
Most facilities that treat substance use disorder provide individual and group therapy as part of their rehabilitation programs. Peer support in an environment like kathy ireland® Recovery Centers can lead to the following health improvements:
A decrease in overall stress levels
A sense of fellowship and belonging that decreases feelings of isolation
Reduced risk of developing a mental health disorder
Decreased risk of heart disease
SAMHSA describes group therapy as “a therapy modality wherein clients learn and practice recovery strategies, build interpersonal skills, and reinforce and develop social support networks.” Group therapy introduces social interactions in a safe and controlled environment that respects cultural, religious, and personal boundaries. You can learn how to interact productively with others, increase self-efficacy, and improve problem-solving and communication skills.
The Various Forms of Psychotherapy We Offer
All of our kathy ireland® Recovery Centers programs include multiple forms of psychotherapy to provide symptom relief and emotional support during treatment. We use a combination of different modalities, including:
Cognitive-Behavioral Therapy (CBT)
Motivational Interviewing (MI)
Acceptance and Commitment Therapy (ACT)
Other therapy models
The clinicians are our various facilities personalize our group and individual sessions to ensure you acquire the essential tools needed to help you maintain sobriety after completing treatment. Learn more about our other therapy options by visiting our page on Therapy Modalities.
What to Expect During Group Therapy
At kathy ireland® Recovery Centers, group therapy provides a safe space for sharing your thoughts, experiences, and feelings with peers under the guidance of trained clinicians. You can expect the following during a group session:
Peer encouragement to maintain sobriety
An open space where you can share your voice
Guided exercises and topic discussions
Treatment takes place over a relatively short period of time. Most of our facilities offer residential or outpatient care that lasts for approximately 30 days. During that time, you undergo a series of transitions to prepare you for the next stage of recovery. Group therapy plays an essential role. The topics covered in group therapy often center around providing education about your current circumstances, normalizing your experiences, and preparing you for long-term sobriety. Typical subjects we cover in group therapy include:
Emotional or environmental triggers
Self-forgiveness and forgiving others
Planning for the future
Positive Social Interactions
Groups therapy is an excellent way to practice coping skills involving social stressors. We also use it to provide an educational breakdown of the effects substance use disorder can have on your mental and physical health. Your risk of relapse decreases the more you understand about your condition and how it impacts you.
Alongside peers with similar life experiences, you will learn about the following during your group therapy sessions:
The effects of substance use on the body and mind
How various skills can help you stay sober and healthy
The link between emotions and behaviors
The importance of peer support and how you can encourage others
Group Therapy Is Not a Self-Help Group
A common misconception is that group therapy provides the same level of support as self-help groups. However, they are very different, and our facilities use evidence-based methods to ensure you get the most out of each session. Group therapy at kathy ireland® Recovery Centers involves standardized practices, a trauma-informed approach and often takes place over a relatively short period of time.
Several main differences between group therapy and peer self-help groups include:
Experienced clinicians lead group therapy, while support groups are usually hosted by untrained peers
Group therapy is outcome-oriented and involves a set number of sessions, while support groups are often open-ended
Group therapy during rehabilitation is often mandatory
Support groups have less formal meetings, while group therapy sessions are often highly structured
Recovery does not end after hitting specific milestones like completing a rehabilitation program or staying sober for a year. Instead, it is a lifelong journey that requires strong motivation and achievable goals. Peer support can keep you accountable and moving forward when you hit road bumps or challenges along the way. During your treatment at one of our facilities, you will learn how to interact with others in a mutually beneficial way. We teach essential life skills, including how to cope with everyday social stressors, to make it easier for you to reach out for help after you return home.
Peer support is a necessary component no matter where you are in your recovery. A strong support system and the encouragement of peers will decrease the risk of relapse and improve your quality of life. Once you complete the treatment program at kathy ireland® Recovery Centers, your case manager will ensure you have all the information and resources you need to continue receiving peer support.
At kathy ireland® Recovery Centers, we offer group therapy and other treatment services to ensure you achieve long-term sobriety. Learn more by calling us today: (866) 861-9772.
Contact us today to learn more.
Our network of facilities created by kathy ireland® Recovery Centers by Ascension Recovery Services provide a path to successful recovery from substance use disorders.