The five stages of addiction recovery are precontemplation, contemplation, preparation, action and maintenance. Someone at the contemplation stage is generally more open to receiving information about the possible consequences of their addictive behavior. They may be open to learning about different eco sober house rating strategies for controlling or quitting the addictive behavior, without committing to a specific approach or even promising to make a change. Those who become addicted to drugs or alcohol can also face legal issues involving theft or unlawful behavior in order to continue their drug addiction.

With each article and resource, she hopes to save other families from experiencing the anguish of a loved one’s passing due to drinking or drugs. Moving someone from pre-contemplation to the next phase of sobriety requires getting them to understand their focus of control. When someone sees what the consequences of their addiction are to those around them, it may push them to consider changing their behavior. It isn’t enough to help them understand the fallout from their behavior.

  • In more serious cases, an individual may be faced with consequences so dire they have no choice but to take whatever help or treatment is offered.
  • This shift in strategy involves a more personalized approach in treating addiction.
  • • First physician in California to be licensed to use Suboxone for addiction treatment.
  • There may be many other preparations that need to be made in your specific circumstance, such as finding a clean, safe place to start your new life.
  • In person-centered therapy , by comparison, clinicians tend to employ reflection .

Therapist Aid has obtained permission to post the copyright protected works of other professionals in the community and has recognized the contributions from each author. In this stage, you do not consider your behavior to be a major problem. Instead, you are more focused on the benefits that come from engaging in the behavior. Denial is running the show, characterized by shifting blame for problems onto others. John C. Umhau, MD, MPH, CPE is board-certified in addiction medicine and preventative medicine. For over 20 years Dr. Umhau was a senior clinical investigator at the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism of the National Institutes of Health .

Back away a bit to say, “Hey, I understand why you’re not interested in treatment right now.” This helps to take them off the defensive right off the bat. Successful recovery from addictive behaviors occurs in gradual sequential steps over some time. You take your first active steps toward change, consciously choosing new behaviors, learning to overcome the tendencies toward unwanted behaviors and engaging in change.

It takes a small minority of people six months of abstinence to reach the point where they don’t go back to their addictive behavior. However, for most people, a commitment of two to five years is necessary to truly break the habit and solidify change. The maintenance stage of the transtheoretical model of change is concerned with continuing to achieve the progress that began in the action stage. For people with addictions, this means upholding the intentions made during the preparation stage and the behaviors introduced in the action stage.

In the preparation stage, acknowledging that stress is a key factor in addictive behavior and identifying ways to manage that is then deployed during the action stage. The Action Stage of Change can be the most stressful, especially when a person is attempting to moderate their behavior on their own. In treatment, it can be scary if a patient needs to go through a difficult detox so their body is no longer dependent on drugs or alcohol. Like the word implies, people in the Contemplation Stage of Change are more open to the idea of changing their behavior.

How does someone feel in this stage?

This means the person is ready to bring about change in the future, but not immediately. Unlike the previous stage, they’re aware of the pros of becoming drug-free. It can also be helpful for the addicted person themselves to gain self-understanding using this model. Insight is a powerful tool for change because it makes it easier to be mindful of decisions you’re making in the moment.

stages of change addiction

For those who have been masking their emotions and thoughts with opiates, alcohol, cannabis, or other illicit substances, it is difficult to face depression, guilt, fear, and even happiness. Most addicts do not want to face how their behaviors during active addiction have affected their loved ones. Next, well fast forward a few decades and look at its use in addiction treatment.

Essentially, the gears are starting to turn and the individual is able to recognize their problematic behavior. Precontemplation is the first stage in the “Stages of Change” or “Transtheoretical” model of addiction as developed by Prochaska and DiClemente. The Precontemplation stage can also be known or identified as being simply “not ready” for any type of treatment or recovery. People in this stage have no intention to take action in the foreseeable future, and can often be completely unaware that their behavior is slowly ruining their lives. Such individuals are still not ready to embark on the traditional addiction recovery treatment programs which advocate for immediate change. Others will see them resistant, unmotivated, or not ready for change, but the truth is that traditional addiction treatment programs were not designed to help such individuals.

A Gradual Process

Additionally, drug addiction has been shown to have an impact on the economy as the demand for health services as well as law enforcement resources increases through the increased prevalence of drug abuse. Intake may involve a lot of different things including a mental health assessment, medical assessment, and a substance abuse assessment. If the treatment center is licensed and has medical staff members on-site they will administer those assessments and treatment will begin as soon as possible depending on what kinds of treatment you need. The stages of change model can help you overcome your gaming addiction, or another type of digital addiction, as long as you reach and stay in the maintenance stage. Maintenance is the stage in which people work to prevent relapse and consolidate the gains attained during action. For addictive behaviors this stage extends from six months to an indeterminate period past the initial action.

The Relapse or Termination Stage is included only to acknowledge that sometimes people will fall back into old, addictive habits. In fact, for many people, relapse is what pushes them back into the action and maintenance stages. You are getting ready to implement the strategies you learned about in the contemplation stage, even though you might still not be ready to act on that plan. Ambivalence is still present, but you are more willing to consider the work required to make a lasting change.

However, they do not see them as significant as compared to the benefits. Characteristics of this stage are a lack of interest in change, and having no plan or intention to change. At this stage, the person becomes acutely aware of their condition and how it impacts those around them, both friends and family.

These stages give the recoveree the tools they need to stop being afraid of the substance that controlled their life for so long. Recovery is a complete change of everything you have known, and there will be different stages you’ll experience. Well-known alcohol use disorder researchers Carlo C. DiClemente and J. O. Prochaska created a 6-stagemodel of changethat helps professionals and their clients understand addiction issues and the road to recovery. Their research is based on personal observations of how people modified negative behaviors like drinking, smoking, and overeating. In the second stage of change, addicts begin to feel ambivalent about their drug or alcohol problems during professional addiction treatment.

  • For some, however, even in the face of dire consequences, there is a tendency to remain in denial about the magnitude of their addiction.
  • But, most scientists understand that addiction is a brain disease.
  • Substance addiction is a chronic disorder, and recovery from addiction takes time.
  • The end of contemplation stage is a time of ANTICIPATION, ACTIVITY, ANXIETY, and EXCITEMENT.
  • They might feel like their problems are caused by outside factors and will remain in this stage until those factors go away.

This behavioral change model can serve as a roadmap to know where a person is at any time during the process. Changing behavior can be difficult for almost anyone, especially those trying to overcome addiction. Having an awareness of the stages one must pass through on the road to change can make it easier to attain their goals.

Inspire Malibu is State Licensed by the Department of Health Care Services

For instance, motivational interviewing is most suitable for people in the pre-contemplation and contemplation stages of change. On the other hand, relapse preventionis a strategy that is most suitable for people in either the action or maintenance stage of change. As therapy participants move through the various stages of change, addiction specialists adjust their therapeutic approach to match the participant’s changing motivation. The “stages of change” model is a theory often adopted by health professionals, but it is not the only way to describe the recovery process.

In this stage, the range of preparation can be from implementing strategies for moderating drug or alcohol intake, all the way to preparations leading to treatment for addiction. While they are represented in a particular sequence, it’s not uncommon for people in recovery to jump to different stages out of order. This shift in strategy involves a more personalized approach in treating addiction. During the action stage, the person has made significant changes in their lives and is committed to change. This stage of change is characterized by prolonged periods of abstinence and the inclination to turn to professionals for help before or after relapse. Without a strong commitment to maintenance, there will surely be relapse, usually to precontemplation or contemplation stage.

But, through their research, they discovered that changing behaviors doesn’t happen quickly. They showed me the tools that I’ve tried to use everyday in my life to think less often of myself, and more frequently of others. I am learning to lend a hand when I am able and to have a honest and humble relationship with God and the people around me.

If you have any questions about the Transtheoretical Model and the Stages of Change for Addiction call us at 800-444-1838.

Some individuals may go to one session during the day around their work schedule or school schedule. Once treatment is done they can return home and continue going about their regular daily routine instead of being required to stay in treatment all of the time. You are starting to think about changing, reducing or quitting gaming but you are still undecided. You might be thinking about the benefits of changing your habits and ready to hear some strategies for managing or quitting. You might be open to non-judgmental information rather than confrontation.

Preparation comes when a user has decided it is time to make a change. They have made a commitment to change their addictive and self-destructive ways. They recognize there is a problem, and they are prepared to take steps to address it. This is the stage where clients start planning for their recovery. They may commit to attending therapy, meetings, or a formal drug treatment program. Some descriptions of his model also term this phase relapse since it’s most likely to happen at this point.

The Discovery House is a fully licensed, Joint Commission accredited, comprehensive drug and alcohol treatment center located in Southern California. We provide detox and residential addiction treatment to individuals from all across the United States. During the Precontemplation and Contemplation Stages, they can’t control temptations. The pros and cons of engaging in substance abuse change drastically for an addict as they progress through the stages of change. In fact, those changes to the decisional balance are what motivate an addict to progress through those stages.

You are likely resistant to any confrontation or advice about changing your behavior in this stage. Individuals in court-ordered therapy or rehab recommended by a family member or spouse often begin here. Usually, an experience of consequences to behavior is what propels someone into the next stage. (i.e. becoming more aware of the actual consequences of their addiction). The treatment team will also use motivational interviewing techniques to help the client consider the possibility of a change.

During this phase, individuals are not yet thinking about making a change anytime in the future. Not-so-positive consequences or crises may not have happened yet for these people. Therefore, they may not believe that they truly have a problem regarding their substance use. Help may be needed to aid this individual in becoming aware of their current situation. Their unwillingness to change may also be due to being discouraged.

Unfortunately, this often comes with a slew of physical side effect such as nausea, vomiting, muscle aches, fever and more. However, with great preparation and a great support system, getting through this process is possible and can be successful. After this, the individual will continue with therapy and working through the deep-rooted issues of their addiction. However, once one or all of these negative consequences come to the surface they are then pushed into the “Contemplation” stage of the Stages of Change model. The Stages of Change are heavily guided by therapy in order to be successful. It is critical to attend therapy to acquire the tools necessary to be able to maintain sobriety.