12-Step vs a Non-12-Step Rehab

If you’re looking into addiction recovery programs for the first time you might feel intimidated by the variety of programs available. While there are many types of treatment, programs broadly breakdown into two categories: 12-Step and Non-12-Step. We’re going to get a closeup look at how these programs differ but, first let’s take a look at what these programs offer.

What are 12-Step Programs?

12-Step programs function as peer support groups for people recovering from addiction. The typical model these programs follow goes like this:

  • Acceptance: Making the realization that addition is a disease and willpower is not enough to make a full recovery.
  • Surrender: Traditionally, 12-Step programs incorporated giving control over to a higher power whether that is religious or non-religious. This also incorporates seeking help various professionals in the addiction recovery process.
  • Participation: Regular attendance to 12-Step program meetings.

What are Non-12-Step Programs?

The big split between 12-Step and other programs is in 12-Step’s reliance on religious, mostly Christian, themes. Non-12-Step programs have moved towards a more secular approach to group therapy. They differ from program to program, but there is a common set of ideas which include:

  • Motivation: Staying in a program can be challenging, Non-12-Step programs make helping you find the motivation to stay sober a key aspect of recovery.
  • Help for Yourself: Many of these programs focus on responsibility. This is both to yourself as you recover and to the people in your life.
  • Balanced Recovery: These programs strike a balance between peer support groups and getting you integrated back into your daily life.

Now that we’ve covered the basics of each program, let’s get into the specifics of how they differ from each other and what roles they play in recovery.

12 Step vs Non 12 Step

While there is ample evidence that shows 12 Step programs are effective, those programs are not comprehensive addiction recovery treatments.

12 Step programs are essentially peer support groups. This is a vital part of treatment plans, but it isn’t often the first step in addiction recovery. Modern addiction recovery programs incorporate a minimum of medical treatment, family therapy, and other evidence-based therapies. Additionally, they involve recreational activities, job skills training, and residential programs. These Non 12 Step treatment programs also incorporate the peer support group structure found in 12 Step programs, but in addition to the treatments listed above.

Non 12 Step programs are emerging as a more comprehensive form of addiction treatment. It’s worth pointing out that 12 Step-style programs are very effective and the focus of modern training programs. The two programs are at their best when combined. Non 12 Step programs have the advantage of being bundled with other therapies that have proven effectiveness. This is especially true for people early in their recovery that need detox, medical, and more intensive care not offered by 12 Step programs.

At the end of the day, it’s best to consider these programs as being parts of each other. The peer support offered by the 12 Step program structure is a key part of staying sober after you’ve overcome the first hurdles of reaching out for help and detox. Peer support gives you access to other people that have found sobriety or are on their journey to recovery. Surrounding yourself with people who are where you are or further along in their recovery will help keep you motivated and on track to sober living. If you combine that with the medical, therapeutic, and other specialized treatments offered in Non-12-Step programs, you will be taking steps towards your own recovery before you even know it!

If you or a loved one are battling with addiction and don’t know where to turn to, contact us today! Rise in Malibu is here to help you. We provide addiction treatment to those who are in need. Our friendly staff is waiting for your call.

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