Evidence Based Psychosocial Interventions in Substance Use PMC

In addition to the oral form of naltrexone, there is an injectable form of this medication that can be used for the treatment of both alcohol and opioid dependence . This form of naltrexone is administered once per month and can be prescribed by a physician without specialized training, saving trip so to a special clinic. Disulfiram is approved for the treatment of alcoholism and has been used for decades. It works to block an enzyme (acetaldehyde dehydrogenase) that is involved in the metabolism of alcohol. When a person taking disulfiram drinks alcohol, their body doesn’t effectively metabolize the acetaldehyde that is produced from the alcohol (and the acetaldehyde builds up in them). The person can experience nausea, vomiting, flushing, headache, and shortness of breath.

For RCTs, we will use the Cochrane risk of bias tool24 assessing randomization method and adequacy, allocation concealment method and adequacy, use of intention-to-treat analysis, and masking (blinding). Any quality issues pertinent to specific outcomes within a study will be noted and considered when determining the overall strength of evidence for conclusions related to those outcomes. We can help you determine the best method of intervention for the person in your life who is struggling.


This model recognizes that the addict isn’t the only person getting hurt by drug and alcohol abuse. Likewise, the addict isn’t the only individual perpetuating the behavior either. Siblings, spouses, or parents may be fueling the fire, and often they don’t even know they’re doing it. Unresolved issues in the family unit that are allowed to fester frequently end up being discovered at the root of an addiction problem. The systemic family intervention focuses on treating the entire family unit, not just the substance abuser.

  • If possible, team members should meet before the intervention and rehearse what they plan to say.
  • The end result hoped for in any intervention is seeing the addict accept help and enter treatment.
  • Looking out for these signs and symptoms can help determine if a loved one is suffering from addiction and in need of an intervention.
  • During a crisis, people who are hard of hearing can use their preferred relay service or dial 711 then 988.
  • These attempts by the family come with the hope the person will stop using drugs.

In the action
stage, brief interventions can help maintain motivation to continue on the
course of change by reinforcing personal decisions made at earlier stages. If you or a loved one need help planning an intervention or getting treatment after one, contact us today. We at Footprint to Recovery can help you find out what is the next step to address addiction. Our team hopes to answer all your questions and provide any information you might need. Getting help is a brave decision, and it will enable you to become a sober, healthier version of yourself. After learning more about the addict, an interventionist will help you decide on the best strategy or intervention technique to use.

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Since adolescence often is per se a risk factor, and the majority of substance users start to use at this age, school is an efficient setting for universal prevention. Schools can offer a systematic and efficient way of reaching large numbers of young people by providing all individuals with the information and skills necessary to help them prevent problems and prepare them for the adult life. Evidence suggests that school-based programmes to prevent substance use can have positive impacts on improving school attainment and engagement as well as health and well-being in general. In addition, policies aimed at keeping children in school can play an important role. Nevertheless, since school-based programmes on substance use often only reach a low percentage of all school children, they should be scaled up and form part of more comprehensive strategies for drug use prevention in order to achieve a wider population-level impact.

In this model, it is the interventionist’s role to educate the family on why they will have to change their lifestyles, too, if they want the addict in their life to get better. Rewarding and withholding rewards as a means to affect behavior — called contingency management— is an intervention strategy designed to reduce substance use disorders. Based on a review and rating by CrimeSolutions of two meta-analyses composed of evaluations using randomized controlled trials, psychosocial interventions are effective for reducing sober house the use of cannabis and the symptoms of dependence, and for increasing the prevalence of abstinence. Recovery specialists also use other intervention models that blend the approaches of these three basic models. These intervention approaches all serve the ultimate goal of bringing awareness of the problem into the substance abuser’s life. Since many substance abusers experience extreme denial regarding the substance abuse, interventions are designed to help addicts understand how behaviors impact themselves and others.

Therapist’s Guide to Substance Abuse Intervention

An assessment packet utilizing ASAM, DSM-5, and ASI criteria is sent to the family. Clinical staff from the intervention team oversees the assessment data and is consulted to arrange a treatment plan. Our intervention team is involved to ensure the family and the substance user have the most significant opportunities to start a new path of recovery. Typically, when families call seeking an intervention, it is at a point where things have spiraled out of control and the drug user’s actions are significantly affecting the rest of the family.

substance abuse intervention

For example, you might say you will no longer join them if they want “a drink or two to unwind” after work. Different ideologies and misconceptions might hold someone back from hosting an intervention for a loved one. Another approach to raising awareness of ambivalence is to explore the
client’s experience of feeling caught between opposing desires. For more
specific techniques for resolving ambivalence, see TIP 35,
Enhancing Motivation for Change in Substance Abuse Treatment
(CSAT, 1999c). This step involves a summary of the discussion and a review of the
agreed-upon changes. There are a number of mistakes that can be made throughout the duration of the intervention.

Trials conducted
since 1995 have garnered similar effect sizes with one trial finding a
greater effect size for women (35 percent) (Fleming et al., 1997). Women were not always
included in earlier trials, but later trials that did include women found
that they were more likely than men to decrease their drinking based on
brief targeted advice. It should be noted that some substance-dependent clients may be in a
life-threatening stage in their addiction or risk serious consequences such
as losing their jobs, going to jail, or losing their families. For these
clients, brief interventions should be linked to a referral strategy in
which the goal is a therapeutic alliance between the client and the referral
treatment team.

They may cause the person to seek comfort in alcohol and drugs, and to seek out the company of those who “understand,” such as drinking buddies and drug dealers. The best approach to treating an addiction depends on many factors, including the substance being used, how severe the addiction is, the addicted person’s attitude towards treatment and quitting or cutting down, and whether they have concurrent mental and/or physical health problems. Make sure to find out in advance whether your loved one’s insurance plan will cover treatment as well as what steps are required for admission, such as a referral from a primary care provider.

For example, a 1996 study found that people whose loved ones staged interventions were more likely to enter treatment than those who just received referrals for treatment. Don’t accept a request for “a day or two to think about it.” They may go into hiding or on a binge. Open the person’s eyes to the effect their substance misuse has on family and friends. If your loved one has a problem with substance misuse, a key first step is to help them agree to the treatment they need. Now that you have a better understanding of the terms intervention and interventionist, you may be wondering how to plan one. Each situation can be different due to the varying circumstances of each person, but there are general steps that someone can follow when planning an intervention.

What is the brief intervention and referral to treatment approach to substance use disorder?

Screening, Brief Intervention and Referral to Treatment (SBIRT) is an evidence-based approach to identify individuals who use alcohol and other drugs (substances) at risky levels. SBIRT has been shown to be valid and reliable in identifying and improving outcomes for people who use substances.