A well-recognized alternative to twelve-step groups like those of AA is SMART. SMART has also proved to be helpful for people with concurrent conditions such as comorbid depression or anxiety.
Self-Management And Recovery Training [SMART] are a support system for people who are dealing with addictions and behavioural disorders. It trains people to suppress their dependence behaviour by making them focus on subjacent thoughts and feelings.
Members get to minimise and even stop their addiction when on the SMART program.
If there is a new method that can improve the treatment, SMART may update the methods that are used.
SMART is regularly updated to provide strategies researchers find most efficient.
SMART has received recognition for its effectiveness in overcoming addiction by the National Institute on Drug Abuse and the American Academy of Family Physicians.
SMART is a self-empowering program which is quite different from the 12-step program where the participants have to admit that they have no power over their addiction. The addicts get the help they need through the guidance of the help of the professionals. Then, participants undergo self trust training, which enables them to control their dependence behaviour. Psychology and self motivation is mostly used in the treatment when using SMART program. There are 4 point that are involved in these program that the addicts follow.
Each point of the 4-point program is described in detail in 'The SMART Recovery Handbook'. Tips for exercising and to maintain sobriety in life are also provided by the handbook.
The 4-points do not constitute a Program. Depending on their current situation, the recovering user can pick on any point they wish.
If you or a loved one has participated in a 12-step program and found it unhelpful you will find SMART to be a better alternative for you. If you need to find a SMART group nearby, we can be of help call 0800 246 1509.
Some similarities to the traditional 12-step Program will be visible in SMART. Both aim at helping substance addicted patients quit the habits. In both cases, the identity of the participants is kept secret. The objectives have been realized in both of them.
The definition of addiction is perhaps different in the SMART program as compared to the 12-step program.
SMART doesn't label its participants as "addicts" or as people who have an "illness." Such labels are considered to be discouraging and ineffective. Another difference is that unlike 12-step, recovery is not an ongoing process in SMART. Participants can proceed with their normal lives after 'graduating' from recovery.
People in need of help resist joining a 12-Step program because they do not want to feel helpless or surrender to God. Participants of SMART are encouraged to approach the process of recovery by gaining control over their lives.
In both programs, strong and helpful support is available. People choose the program they feel will suit them best. As it has been wisely pointed out within the SMART Recovery Handbook "a solution which works on an individual in a particular situation may not be suitable to the other in a similar situation."
A SMART program is different in that its members do "graduate" from the program. Despite the understanding that relapses can occur SMART does not consider a relapse as an essential part of the recovery process.
The desires to use the drugs are completely gone when a person is nearing the completion of the SMART program.
Once the SMART participants come to the last step, they have all necessary skills to live a sober life.
Anyone suffering from any addiction can benefit from SMART. The addiction to food and betting can also be suppressed by this technique. Benefits can also be derived by people who are suffering from mental disorders, which are co-occurring such as depression.