Different Types of Therapy

Types of Treatment for Addiction

There are many different types of addiction treatment programs for people who are struggling with alcohol use disorder (AUD) or drug addiction. These are some of the most common types of treatment for addiction:

  • Medical detox: Medical detox is designed to clear all the drugs from the addicted person’s body. Medical and clinical professionals make the process more comfortable by treating physical and emotional symptoms of drug withdrawal. Individual therapy during detox also helps prepare the client for ongoing treatment in rehab.
  • Inpatient rehab: Inpatient rehab for addiction provides a high level of structure and accountability for people who are recovering from addiction. Clients live at the rehab center for the duration of treatment and they maintain a structured daily schedule that includes individual therapy, group therapy, participation in recovery group meetings, time for physical activity and meals, recreational outings, as well as a small amount of personal time.
  • Outpatient rehab: Outpatient rehab allows clients to live at home or in a sober living home while they complete treatment. This also allows for more flexibility if clients need to continue working or caring for children during their treatment. Clients attend several outpatient group meetings each week, which are hosted by licensed treatment professionals at a safe, clinical location.
  • Online rehab: Online rehab programs allow clients to attend remote video treatment sessions from the comfort of their own homes or while traveling. Video sessions are hosted by licensed treatment professionals and cater to populations who live in remote locations or who cannot otherwise attend face-to-face treatment programs.
  • Court-ordered rehab: individuals who are arrested and charged with drug-related crimes may go to drug court, where they can be sentenced to rehab instead of jail time. There are strict requirements for these types of programs, but generally speaking, they allow eligible individuals to receive treatment for the underlying problem (addiction) instead of just going to jail. These programs help reduce recidivism rates among non-violent drug offenders.
  • Sober living programs: Sober living programs provide safe, supportive, drug and alcohol-free living environments for people in recovery. These gender-specific homes provide peer accountability and support alongside regular drug testing, house meetings, and IOP. Residents also have access to clinical therapy and additional recovery support services, including individualized recovery programming, certified peer recovery support, employment assistance, educational planning, and volunteer placement.
  • Aftercare: Aftercare services are ideal for people who have already completed detox, rehab, and sober living but who need continued support to maintain their sobriety. Aftercare programs offer peer accountability with weekly meetings and support services.
  • Teen drug rehab: Some drug rehab programs are tailored to teenagers who are struggling with substance use disorders. These programs address teen-specific issues that young people may face in recovery while also providing educational and social services to make re-integrating back into society after rehab much easier.
  • Holistic drug rehab: Holistic drug rehab programs offer treatment services that are designed to enhance clients’ wellness via their mind, body, and spirit. Treatment offerings may include services like acupuncture, yoga, meditation, or nutritional counseling.

Although there are many treatment options to choose from, the best type of addiction treatment for an individual will depend on the severity of the addiction, treatment history, financial ability, and other personal circumstances. A doctor, therapist, or licensed addiction treatment professional can help you determine a treatment plan that is right for you.

10 Types of Therapy Used in Addiction Treatment and Recovery

There are many different types of therapies that are used in addiction treatment programs like residential rehab, IOP, and aftercare. Each type of therapy is different and may be more or less effective, depending on the client’s needs. If you or a loved one is preparing to start an addiction treatment program, here are some of the types of therapies you will likely encounter.

  1. Cognitive Behavioral Therapy for Addiction. What is Cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT)? 
    Cognitive behavioral therapy is founded on the core principle that psychological problems like addiction are based (in part) on harmful thinking patterns, negative learned behaviors, and unhelpful coping techniques.
  2. Contingency Management for Addiction. What is Contingency management? Contingency management is a type of behavior therapy in which individuals are rewarded for making positive changes in their lives.
  3. Rational Emotive Behavior Therapy for Addiction. What is Rational Emotive Behavior Therapy?
    Rational emotive behavior therapy (REBT) is a type of therapy that is very similar to cognitive behavioral therapy.
  4. Motivational Interviewing for Addiction.   What is Motivational interviewing? Motivational interviewing is a counseling method in which the therapist or counselor seeks to motivate the client to maintain their sobriety by identifying his or her intrinsic motivations and values and then focusing treatment on that.

  1. Family Therapy for Addiction. What is Family and/or Couples Therapy?
    Family or couples therapy is designed to address an individual’s substance abuse problems, as well as co-occurring problems and issues related to the interconnected relationships within a family unit.

  2. 12-Step Facilitation Therapy for Addiction. What is 12-Step Facilitation Therapy?
    12-step facilitation therapy is a structured approach to addiction recovery that is grounded in the concept of addiction being a spiritual and medical disease. The primary focus of 12-step facilitation therapy, which is a manual-driven therapy, is acceptance, surrender, active participation in the recovery community, and continued sobriety.

  3. Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing (EMDR) Therapy for AddictionWhat Is Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing (EMDR)?
    Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing (EMDR) was originally developed in the late 1980s to treat clients with PTSD. Since trauma and substance use disorders are often intertwined, EMDR is also an effective approach for treating people who suffer from addiction.
  4. Dialectical Behavior Therapy for Addiction. What Is Dialectical Behavior Therapy (DBT)?
    Dialectical behavior therapy is a type of cognitive behavioral therapy that was developed by Dr. Marsha M. Linehan to treat people who were suffering from severe suicidal ideation. 

  5. Matrix Model for Addiction. What is the Matrix Model?
    The Matrix Model is used to help stimulant abusers overcome their addictions to drugs like methamphetamine, cocaine, and prescription stimulants.
  6. Person-Centered Therapy for Addiction. What Is Person-Centered Therapy or Individual Therapy for Addiction?

    Person-centered therapy is used to treat addiction, among other things. It focuses on treating the individual, rather than the substance abuse itself. It is grounded in the idea that shame and rejection hold us back from healing, while self-acceptance leads to positive change.