All addiction and mental health books and programs reflect the underlying beliefs of the author or program designers. Whether you’re choosing self-help books on mental health and addiction, a rehabilitation program or a counselor, first find out what model of addiction treatment is being used. To make a good choice, you will want detailed information about the evidence, rationale, and principles underlying the program or resource. Knowing the general models used by addiction self help books and programs can help you to start asking good questions (BC Ministry of Health, 2004; Frances, Miller, Sheldon, & Mack, 2005).
1. Moral model: This is the simplest model. Using is considered morally wrong. People are responsible for their behavior. Good behavior is praised and bad behavior is discouraged. Practicing a particular religious belief is often the major focus for cure or treatment.
2. Disease Model: Addiction is caused by genetic and biological factors. Addiction is considered to be a progressive disease and may require the individual to take medication to reduce the rate of relapse.
3. Behavior Model: Addiction has multiple components. Habit formation and habit change are primarily influenced by cognitive (thinking) and behavior principles. Cognitive behavior therapy or similar approaches are used to reduce relapse.
4. Holistic Model: This is the most complex and recent model developed. A complex set of factors cause relapse. Individuals have unique strengths and risks arising from gender, sexual orientation, age and cultural identity. Recognizing and working with individual differences and characteristics, the individual is taught skills to prevent and respond to individual problems in their life and to improve physical, mental, social and economic status.
In your recovery and all aspects of your life, you can improve your decision-making by becoming informed. Use this book as a starting point to guide your risk reduction and relapse prevention planning. Constantly search for quality information to support you to move ahead in your life and to live your values.
There are many studies on addiction causes and treatments and some present conflicting conclusions. It is up to you to determine which studies and information you will use to guide your actions. Some studies may reveal that the odds are against a person with your personal history and substance use pattern, in succeeding in abstinence. Always remember, no study can accurately predict a negative outcome for a specific individual, such as you.
Always use quality information to reduce your risk of using again. Never use it as an excuse not to try to succeed in achieving your goals. Use information to help you end your experience with addiction. No matter what type of addiction treatment you choose, you can increase its effectiveness by creating your own unique relapse prevention program based on continuous learning, challenging your old ideas about addiction, and taking concrete action to create a positive lifestyle.