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Why Therapy & Counselling is Essential for Addiction Recovery

Women talking with counsellor for advice on addition

If addiction has felt mentally draining, you’re not alone. 

Addiction is more than a physical dependence on a substance—it’s emotional and psychological too. It’s something complex that doesn’t have a one-size-fits-all solution. 

Managing addiction is an ongoing process, and you should be proud of how far you’ve come. Since it’s an ongoing journey, therapy and counselling can provide you with strategies, so you’re prepared for the road ahead. With individual and group programs available, support is within reach.

Counselling and therapy can give you the tools to succeed, so life after treatment can be lived to the fullest.

Benefits of counselling and therapy by improving mental health, future growth, coping strategies, building trust, and improving relationships.

Benefits of Counselling & Therapy

Improving Mental Health

Addiction and mental health have a strong connection. Many people who have substance use disorders are also diagnosed with co-occurring mental disorders, including:

Much like physical recovery is an important step in any type of addiction, mental and emotional healing are essential too. Behavioural therapies and community-based mental health care help you deal with intense emotions, challenge your thoughts, and limit self-destructive behaviours.

Reflecting on the Past to Allow for Future Growth

Addiction can change the way you think. Counselling and therapy can help you make peace with decisions made in the past and offer a fresh perspective to identify the habits, behaviours, and thoughts that have contributed to addiction.

With strategies such as the 12-step program, you’re allowed to be honest with yourself, and reflect on the past to make positive changes for continual growth.

Your emotions throughout the process are valid, and spending time having a conversation with a professional or trusted support person can help you work through and manage these feelings. Addiction therapy can be an instrumental way to overcome guilt and give you a positive outlook for the future.

Providing You With Coping Strategies

Breaking the cycle of addiction is no easy feat, and your strength should be acknowledged. After putting in the work to better yourself and your life, it may be intimidating to go out into the world with possible addictive triggers.

Mental and social factors that can trigger relapse include:

  • Daily stress
  • Environmental cues
  • Spending time in social groups where a substance is present

It’s okay to feel nervous because it means you care about your recovery and your success. Counselling and therapy can help alleviate the stress associated with day-to-day triggers and provide you with coping strategies unique to your situation. 

Like any muscle in the body, challenging the brain to think in new ways takes time and practice. Recovery programs can help give you the tools and unwavering support needed for successful recovery.

Building Trust & Having Support

Addiction can create negative feelings of believing you have no one to turn to. Though it may not seem like it at the time, there are plenty of people who want to help and see you succeed. 

Addiction recovery may be a deeply personal experience, but having a trusted support network can help encourage recovery by having someone to lean on during the challenging times. 

Recovery counselling and therapy is a way of creating trusted communication and connecting with someone who truly wants to see you flourish. Having someone in your corner can help keep you accountable for your recovery journey.

Improving Relationships With Loved Ones

Addiction is undoubtedly challenging for the addict, but it affects families and loved ones as well.

Family support can play a positive role in addiction recovery, knowing your loved ones are there for you each step of the way. Counselling and therapy can help you develop healthy communication skills to rebuild connections that may have been damaged in the past.

By freeing your mind from negative thoughts and addressing past behaviours with the help of a recovery program, you can improve relationships with your loved ones. 

Group sitting with one another and talking over addiction recovery by supporting one another

Taking Care of Your Mind, Body, & Spirit

Identifying that you need help and reaching out for support is a courageous act. At the Calgary Dream Centre, we want to help support you in the growth and health of your mind, body, and spirit.If you or someone you know is struggling with addiction, please contact us. The road to recovery starts today.

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  • Written by Jim Moore

    CEO/Executive Director, Jim Moore is a founding member of the Calgary Dream Centre. His passion and drive to see lives changed has guided the organization to where it is today. Jim entered the non-profit world after many years of leadership in business, banking, real-estate, and church ministry. During that time he served on a number of boards and his career moved him across Canada from Vancouver to Toronto, and back to Calgary, where he helped found the Calgary Dream Centre. He was president of the Calgary Real Estate Board CREB, and past president of Canada Trust Real Estate Division Canada.

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