Busting 4 Myths About Supporting a Family Member in Addiction Recovery

Article on Health City

Supporting a family member in addiction recovery is a challenging journey that requires patience, understanding, and resilience. It's essential to remember that recovery is not linear; there will be progress and setbacks, which are both integral parts of the process.This article published online by Health City helps clear up common misconceptions about this process.

Here are our key takeaways from the article:

The role of social support in addiction treatment is critical and needs to be reframed among clinicians to improve health outcomes for patients with Substance Use Disorder.

The term "codependency" and "tough love" can stigmatize and pathologize family members, which can have a damaging impact on patient outcomes.

Family support can look different from family to family, and clinicians should empower family members to support their loved ones in ways they can.

Clinicians don't need to adopt a specific model to engage families in care; instead, they should see the patient as part of a social network and find ways to engage their social support.

It's crucial to engage families with compassion and empathy, providing them with evidence-based guidance and resources to cope with the stress of caregiving.


Busting 4 Myths About Supporting a Family Member in Addiction Recovery

By Meryl Bailey

For chronic diseases such as diabetes, heart disease, and cancer - experts acknowledge the vital role caregivers play in helping with disease management, as well as in alleviating daily burdens for their loved ones. Strong social support from patients' relatives, partners, and friends is critical to successful treatment plans. Studies find that compassionate, action-oriented support from family helps patients reduce stress and live longer.

In striking contrast, families and loved ones of people with substance use disorder (SUD) often receive mixed messages from society and the healthcare system about their role as caregivers. Longstanding myths and outdated language, such as "codependency" and "tough love," can harm family members and loved ones in treatment.

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By Aneri Pattani