Author: Gary Jackson

Family Involvement in Treatment and Recovery for Substance Use Disorders among Transition-Age Youth: Research Bedrocks and Opportunities PMC

Healthcare providers should use clinical interventions and modalities to heal symptoms of mood disorders and trauma through individual therapy, group therapy, family therapy, and medication management. By educating families on substance use disorders, they can be more empathetic and understanding of each family member’s experience including their own. Without such accounting, initiatives to increase family involvement in those contexts are as likely to pile-up harms as to promote recovery.

family support in addiction recovery

Some may tune in and out, being inconsistently emotionally available for their child. Others may feel denial and misdirect their anger, sparking communication breakdowns. Get professional help from an online addiction and mental health counselor from BetterHelp. While your family member is in treatment, you can do some work on your own to gain support, improve your coping skills, learn how to avoid enabling, and be better prepared overall when your loved one comes home from rehab. You’ll meet others who are going through or have gone through similar situations who can offer you support and an understanding ear.

How Involving Family in the Treatment Process Can Improve Recovery Outcomes

If one of our articles is marked with a ‘reviewed for accuracy and expertise’ badge, it indicates that one or more members of our team of doctors and clinicians have reviewed the article further to ensure accuracy. This is part of our ongoing commitment to ensure FHE Health is trusted as a leader in mental health and addiction care. Anthony Nave is an Internationally Certified Advanced Alcohol and Drug Counselor and Licensed Clinical Social Worker, who holds master’s degrees in Educational Psychology and Clinical Social Work.

  • Family support can offer understanding and acceptance, which are crucial for healing.
  • Another promising opportunity for advancing family-oriented engagement in youth SUD services is tele-intervention (Hogue et al., 2021).
  • Though self-administration of screening tools via electronic tablets has been advocated as a strategy to avert need for direct disclosure and potentially improve case finding (Levy et al., 2014), some youth choose not to disclose use even when use is suspected or has been identified by others.
  • Rather than blaming the person for not being strong enough or being weak-minded because they can’t get off of a substance, they understand that addiction is a more complex, bio-psycho-social disorder.
  • It is well-established that utilizing multiple sources of information to detect youth SU is more accurate than relying on any single source (Winters, 1999).

According to Brown, the main difference between the transition stage and the early recovery stage is a general lessening of the physical cravings and psychological impulses for alcohol. They may also help guide the family as they begin to move from drinking to abstinence, then toward the last part of the transition stage. The family may be encouraged to stop denying the alcohol use and supporting the drinking and begin to find avenues to reach out for help. In her book “The Alcoholic Family in Recovery,” Stephanie Brown takes a close, research-based look at the journey from alcohol use to recovery within the family dynamic.

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When the family comes together to offer support and focus on positive outcomes as a unit, it may help prevent many of the pitfalls during recovery. When you live with alcohol use disorder, positive outcomes often involve the entire family. They compensate for the shame the family feels around the addict by being the family superstar. They may cover for the individual with an SUD, attempting to make the individual look pleasing to everyone.

Providers should also be attuned to potential harms, but also conditional benefits, of involving family members in contexts of child abuse/neglect, family violence, and other family-related trauma. However, research on peer-based RSS for SUD is quite limited in both quantity and quality (Bassuk et al., 2016; Eddie et al., 2019), with virtually no studies testing impacts on CSO wellness specifically (but see Carpenter et al., 2020). Controlled research on family-to-family parent coaching models and mutual aid groups for youth SUD would contribute enormously to understanding whether and how such services work.

Parental Substance Abuse Effects on Children

Third, the youth SUD service system needs to become rigorously relationship-oriented. The most recent annual survey of SUD provider practices (SAMHSA, 2019) does not list any clinical or therapeutic approach that is fundamentally family-based. This omission acknowledges that although most providers purport to involve families in routine programming, evidence-based family approaches are not widely practiced. Moreover, whereas a primary goal of youth recovery support is to enhance the quality of personal and family/social life, the current landscape of behavioral services offers little in terms of a framework for what optimal family relationships can or should look like during recovery (Ashford et al., 2019). To be fair, SAMHSA’s (2020b) comprehensive roadmap makes extensive recommendations for involving families in SUD treatment. Beyond aspiration, actually transforming SUD systems of care to become relationship-oriented will require greater system-wide attunement to familial relationships and to cultural context characteristics that shape user experiences of SUD services (Kirmayer et al., 2016).

Future research must delve deeper into the diverse experiences of families across different stages of recovery, including those with loved ones still battling the storm. This comprehensive understanding will inform the development of better support mechanisms and resources for families, paving the way for expanded family-focused services and research initiatives. Imagine a sturdy bridge, its foundation built on unwavering support and its planks woven from understanding.

Relapses can be turbulent waves, underscoring the need for ongoing support services for families navigating this dynamic and individualized journey. The journey through the storm of addiction or mental health challenges is a daunting one, a tempestuous sea demanding both courage and resilience. While the individual steers the ship, facing the crashing waves of change, it is the family – a steadfast lighthouse – that illuminates the path and offers unwavering support. This guide serves as a handheld compass, guiding individuals and families through this tumultuous voyage, forging a path towardhealing and hope. Future research should compare the experiences of family members in varying recovery conditions, including those with family members in active addiction, to gain a comprehensive understanding of the complexities involved.