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Addictions Counselling description

 
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It’s good to talk. Talk therapy is the key to treating any addiction, otherwise known as excessive psychological dependence or obsession. Addictions counselling provides treatment for addicted individuals, whether it be an addiction to drugs, alcohol, cigarettes, sex, eating, shopping, gambling or anything that is likely to have a long-term negative impact on one's life, if certain activities are excessively consumed. Addicts are often people who suffer from depression or anxiety and although an addiction can provide for short-term pleasure and satisfaction, the long-term effects can often have damaging consequences.

How does it work?

A skilled counsellor or therapist can help their patients to understand the meaning of their addiction in terms of the underlying problems attached to their addiction. They will be able to help motivate them to make positive changes to their lives, reward them when they make progress and support them if they slip up.

Treating an addiction is more than just simply reducing or removing the thing they are most addicted to, it’s also just as importantly about getting the individual to change their lifestyle permanently in order to prevent the patient from returning to their problems.

There are specialist counselling agencies to help deal with particular addictions but a typical counselling session can last anything from 15-45 minutes in length. During a session the counsellor and the patient will review the addictive behavior as well as share ideas about how he or she can better cope with the addiction.

Often the patient will have a weekly one-on-one session with the counsellor so that his or her performance can be monitored. But once an addict starts showing good progress the weekly one-on-one sessions may be reduced.

Another type of counselling exists in the form of group counselling. This type of counselling allows a group of people, who share a similar problem to discuss their addictions, share their stories, support each other, encourage each other and offer their advice and suggestions. This type of counselling can sometimes be better as patients do not feel alone and isolated in their own addiction; they have others to share their emotions with.

Is it for me?

If an addiction you have is ruining your life, work or relationship, addictions counselling is just a phone call away. It is usually difficult for an addict to tackle an addiction alone and often one-to-one counselling or a group counselling session can be very helpful. Whether you choose an individual session or a group session depends on personal preference. But whatever your situation may be, there is always help at hand.

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Contains Ordnance Survey data © Crown copyright and database right 2013

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