12-Step vs. Non 12-Step Treatment


There are many different schools of thought when it comes to what type of treatment or recovery approach is most effective.  It goes without saying that 12-Step approaches have been recognized worldwide and have helped millions of men and women put their devastating addiction, alcoholism or eating disorder behind them.  Beyond that however, the 12-Step model has been molded into recovery approaches within many other communities such as, emotional health (Emotions Anonymous), family support (Alanon & Alateen), theft (Shoplifters Anonymous) and many more!

Over the past 10 to 15 years there has been a whole new wave of non 12-Step rehabs and treatment centers that have begun to integrate a slew of new approaches.  Many are focusing on advanced treatment techniques like, brain mapping, neurofeedback, neuroplasticity, etc.  Others like to integrate more of a spiritual approach but one that does not fall into the 12-Step box, such as; religion, Eastern Philosophies, SMART Recovery, Agape and so on.

One of the biggest reasons for the growing uprising against the 12-Step approach is because it follows a disease-model of thinking and one which concludes that alcoholism, addiction and eating disorders cannot be cured.  These diseases are recognized by the medical community as being progressive and fatal, meaning, they get worse (never better) and will eventually result in death.  The 12-Steps are actually a way of life, a way of living.  They constitute a whole new way of thinking and living and often times they conflict with that which the individual has grown accustomed to.  The steps involve rigorous honesty, amends, taking personal inventory, faith in a higher power and more.  To many, living like this is simply not acceptable.

Many of the more luxury treatment centers out there are able to incorporate a vast hybrid approach.  For instance, they may include a little 12-Step education and 2 or 3 outside AA or NA meetings per week but likewise, include yoga, religion of choice for the clients, SMART Recovery, Eastern Philosophies, etc.  Conversely, the more affordable rehabs with greater constraints will likely need to rely more on outside meetings as part of the recovery process for their clients.  This isn’t across the board but is definitely quite common to see.

So the question remains…”12-Step or Non 12-Step?”  We encourage you to speak with people from both schools of thought and conduct as much research as possible.  We here at A.T.R.I. have seen people recover on both sides of the fence.  We know that the 12-Steps have improved the lives of millions around the world; we also know that it is not the only way to recover.

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The information above is intended as a general guide based on the experience of many. The creators of this web page are not licensed physicians; we are caring individuals whom have experienced the horrors of addictive-type illnesses on many levels. We speak from many years of personal and professional experience. Please feel free to contact us for any reason at: info@addiction-rehab-reviews.org