Addiction is a complex struggle with very little that can compare to it. The strain of addiction falls upon the individual but also their entire family and community. There is no one simple answer to beating addiction, rather the key is patience. But the good news is that there are treatments and methods in place that can help people heal from their addictions. One example is the Matrix Model, it used for substance abuse treatment and it encourages positive behaviors and recovery.
Below is a guide to understanding this integrative treatment, the advantages of the Matrix Model, and how we can help you find a treatment program using this approach. If you need more information or are ready to seek treatment for substance abuse, our professionals are standing by at 626-602-2966. Call today!
Addiction looks different for everyone but a treatment that centers around change and positive reinforcement is crucial. Contact us today if you require more information.
The Matrix Model
So, what exactly is the Matrix Model? It is a form of Intensive Outpatient Treatment (IOP) created to tackle your emotional, medical, and psychological needs. Also, all of these are components of achieving health. For instance, this model encompasses these three things:
- The Matrix Model provides a framework for stimulant abusers in treatment. In addition to helping them achieve sobriety. Patients learn about issues critical to addiction and relapse. They also receive direction and support from a trained therapist. In addition to becoming familiar with self-help programs.
- The therapist functions simultaneously as a teacher and coach. Providing a positive, encouraging relationship with the patient. Then using that relationship to reinforce positive behavioral change. The interaction between the therapist and the patient is authentic and direct. However, it is not confrontational or parental. Therapists are trained to conduct treatment sessions in a way that promotes the patient’s self-esteem, dignity, and self-worth.
- Treatment materials draw heavily on other tested treatment approaches. Likewise, this includes elements of relapse prevention, family and group therapies, 12-step programs, drug education, and self-help.
This model provides well-rounded support to the patient. Individuals that pursue this type of treatment have not only the support of their peers but a strong relationship with their counselors as well. Also, by including a family component, it empowers patients to develop a positive recovery. The Matrix Model is also very intensive in addressing addiction from all angles.
Why Was The Matrix Model Created?
The creation of the Matrix Model dates back to the 1980s. Traditional treatments were being used at the time of alcohol issues. However, they were fairly ineffective in treating dependence on cocaine or other stimulants.
According to the Drug Enforcement Administration, stimulants are a class of drugs that speed up the body’s systems. Addiction to these, in the 1980s, was a relatively new problem. Because there was not an extensive body of research for professionals to pick from.
The Matrix acknowledges addiction as a complicated relationship between the brain and the body. It also emphasizes behavior as a step toward recovery. It also familiarizes the individual with 12-step programs and other support groups.
For instance, the Matrix approach is based on:
- Establishing a strong therapeutic relationship between the client and counselor
- Teaching clients how to structure time and initiate an orderly and healthy lifestyle
- Imparting accurate, comprehensible information about acute and subacute withdrawal effects and cravings for substances
- Providing opportunities to learn and practice relapse prevention and coping techniques
- Involving family and significant others in the therapeutic and educational processes to gain their support for—and prevent their sabotaging of—treatment
- Encouraging clients to participate in community-based mutual-help groups
- Conducting random urinalyses or breath tests to assess treatment effectiveness
The Matrix Model was created to combat messages of shame during the cocaine epidemic and move away from the idea that punishment was the only way to promote change. This method emphasized the idea that individuals have to want to change in order to recover from addiction.
What To Expect In a Matrix Model Addiction Treatment Program
According to the National Institute of Health, here is the standard functioning of a treatment program when pursuing the Matrix Model.
In addition to individual sessions, the treatment protocol for the 16-week program includes specific structured groups. For example:
Early recovery groups. These groups are for those in the first month of treatment. Organizers keep them small to maximize the attention each client receives. They focus on teaching clients cognitive tools for managing cravings and emphasize time management. Clients create a daily schedule and monitor their activities with group input and support.
Family education sessions. Family education is presented as a 12-week series and includes both clients and family members. These sessions include:
- Slide presentations
- Panel presentations
- Group discussions on topics such as:
- Biology of addiction
- The medical effects of substances
- The effects of addiction on the family
Relapse prevention groups. These groups are the primary component of treatment. Group sessions are highly structured: they focus on cognitive and behavioral change. Also on connecting clients to mutual-help programs. The group protocol includes 32 specific topics.
Social support groups. These groups begin in the last month of treatment and focus on helping clients pursue drug-free activities and develop friendships with people who do not use substances. They are less structured than the other groups, and the content is determined by the needs of the group members.
In short, individuals pursuing the Matrix Model can expect a heavily structured, community-based approach. We will discuss the full benefits of this approach in the next section.
Benefits Of The Matrix Model
Next, let’s take a look at why the Matrix Model is such an effective option for substance abuse treatment. One major benefit is the nonjudgmental and supportive dynamic. Feeling like it is okay to be vulnerable and honest is a great way to heal wounds related to addiction.
Another benefit of the Matrix Model is that there is a lot of engagement and thus a lot of retention. This means that individuals in this treatment are actually motivated to see it through.
The next benefit is the strong bond formed between the patient and their counselor or group. It is always motivating to feel like you have someone that genuinely cares about your recovery. Furthermore, treatment professionals prioritize meeting the patient where they are in life. This “come as you are” mentality is a major reason this model is effective at preventing relapse. Feelings of isolation or shame are common on the path to recovery, and the Matrix Model nips these in the bud as much as possible.
Results Of The Matrix Model
With the Matrix Model, the proof is in the pudding. There is ample research to show that not only does it do well in fighting addiction, but it also has proven to improve other areas of behavior. According to DrugAbuse.gov:
- A number of studies have demonstrated that participants treated using the Matrix Model show statistically significant reductions in drug and alcohol use, improvements in psychological indicators, and reduced risky sexual behaviors associated with HIV transmission.
In addition to the benefit of reducing risky behaviors, the Matrix Model has other long-term benefits. A recent ScienceDirect article found the following benefits of using the Matrix Model:
- Studies have found a clear positive relationship between length of treatment and amount of treatment involvement in the Matrix model and positive outcome at 1-year mark of program completion
- Patients treated with the Matrix model demonstrated significant abstinence from drug and alcohol use and improvements in psychological indicators (i.e. confusion, anxiety, and mood)
While standard treatment may work for some struggling with addiction, the Matrix Model serves as a more intensive intervention. It is a great fit for individuals who require comprehensive care rather than the then-standard weekly outpatient counseling or 28-day inpatient treatment. This evidence-based model is a credible method that you can trust to provide consistent treatment. Now let’s look at how to find Matrix Model treatment and get started on the path to recovery.
How To Find Treatment
To summarize, addiction is a complex problem. For some suffering from this disease, the standard treatment is not enough. The Matrix Model keeps every angle of healing in mind. The structure and guiding principles of the Matrix Model can help you overcome addiction in a supportive environment. It also implements family involvement as a key aspect of recovery. By addressing emotional, psychological, and medical needs this treatment ensures that your sobriety sticks.
However, if you or your loved one has not found success in other treatments, it may be time to look into the Matrix Model. Recovery does not happen overnight, but this model can get you on a path that works.
To find treatments using the Matrix Model in your area, reach out to us. We can help you find treatment in your area and discuss any questions you may have. Do not hesitate to give us a call! The right approach can kick-start your recovery today, and we can help you find it.
Written by Meccah Muhammad
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