In the United States, more than 100 million people admitted to episodes of binge drinking or the use of illegal drugs, including the abuse of prescription drugs. Many of these individuals struggle with alcohol or drug addiction, although most won’t admit to an issue. 

Generally, it falls to the friends or loved ones of someone struggling with substance use disorder to help the person see that they have a problem and encourage them to take the next step. Interventions and deciding intervention types are not always easy because the person struggling with alcohol or drug abuse doesn’t want to admit to a problem and fears the next steps. In some cases, they may also be struggling with mental health disorders.

Loved ones need to understand the basics of the intervention process. Friends and families are encouraged to partner with trained professionals who can help guide the intervention process. It is even a good idea to have a treatment program available for the loved one if they agree to help. This is the best way to ensure the process goes as smoothly as possible. 

What is an Intervention?

According to the National Institute of Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism, more than 85 percent of Americans drink alcohol, but a little over 25 percent of Americans struggle with addiction to alcohol. Most people who struggle with an addiction to alcohol or drugs believe they can quit at any time. 

An intervention is a process carried out by family members, friends, and a professional interventionist to help the person struggling with addiction recognize that they have a problem. The goal is to help the person realize they need treatment and take the first step toward recovery. There are a few intervention types; with an interventionist’s help, loved ones and friends can decide which to utilize.  

Process of an Intervention

While there are varied types of intervention, the process is the same for each, with emphasis shifting depending on the method. Here’s a look at the process:

  1. Someone begins assembling people to help them with the intervention. This includes friends, family members, and a professional therapist.
  2. Once these people are contacted and agree to help, they become the intervention team.
  3. Decide a day and time for the intervention with the person struggling with addiction. 
  4. The team needs to determine the type of addiction and its treatments. 
  5. All team members should know in advance what they plan to say. This can mean writing a statement in advance or jotting down some notes.
  6. Hold the intervention.

The goal of the intervention is to help the person struggling with addiction recognize they have a problem and begins treatment. 

Most Common Intervention Types

The intervention types are numerous; some examples include the Johnson and Love First models. As part of the planning stage for the intervention, the team needs to choose the type of intervention that will be most successful for their loved one. It’s a good idea to better understand intervention strategies before deciding which will work best for the person struggling with addiction.

Systemic Family Model

The systemic family model is an intervention type where the team members and the person struggling with addiction take turns speaking. This intervention strategy allows the person with an addiction to explain their point of view. Team members aren’t simply lecturing the person with addiction; it feels more like a conversation. 

However, after each statement from the person who needs help, one of the intervention team members has a chance to talk and points out how what the other person said indicates an addiction issue. The goal is for people struggling with addiction to realize they have a problem and seek treatment. 

Johnson Model

The Johnson Model is an intervention type that starts with a single person who explores the person struggling with addiction’s social group. The leader of the intervention group reaches out to the person’s friends and loved ones to begin planning an intervention. During the planning meeting, the leader provides everyone with more information on the dangers of addictions and what detox and rehab entail. 

When they meet with the person struggling with drug or alcohol addiction, it’s more like a presentation of the dangers of addiction and why the person targeted by the intervention needs help. The planning session helps each person understand and communicate their talking points during the intervention. 

Love First Model

The Love First Model is an intervention type that follows the same steps as a traditional intervention with one main difference. Each person involved in the intervention writes a personal letter to the person struggling with addiction. 

These personal letters follow a uniform outline:

  1. Defines the relationship between the writer and the subject of the intervention. For example, a coworker might write about the first time they met. 
  2. In the last year or so, the writer points to an instance where the subject of the intervention’s substance abuse led to an embarrassing situation. 
  3. The statement of concern highlights the dangers of long-term alcohol and drug abuse. This section also encourages treatment. 
  4. The final section discusses the consequences if the person doesn’t change their behavior and seek treatment. For example, losing their job.

These letters are presented as part of the intervention. The personal letters convey how the addict’s behavior has impacted their loved ones.

Arise Model

The Arise Model is an intervention type that centers around the family and the family’s relationship with the person struggling with addiction. During the intervention process, the planning helps the family see how they can be more active in the subject of the intervention’s commitment to undertake rehab and remain successful after detox. This intervention model relies heavily on the family and their willingness to be an ongoing part of recovery. 

Intervention & Treatment in San Diego

An intervention can be utilized to help loved ones find addiction recovery. Different intervention strategies can be used based on the recommendation of the interventionist and the input of loved ones. A successful intervention can lead to admittance to a rehab program.  

At Healthy Life Recovery, we can help with intervention and treatment for addicted loved ones. We partner with a person to help them overcome their addiction and return to a sober life. Reach out to us today to learn more about our drug rehab in San Diego and how we can help.

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