When people abuse drugs or alcohol, they have the option of abstinence when they finish treatment. Abstinence is when you completely take drug and alcohol out of your life to prevent any relapsing. Researchers say that abstinence of drug and alcohol is a marker for addiction treatment success, but Adi Jaffe Ph.D says otherwise. “The thing is that the amount of alcohol or drug use per se is not a part of the definition of addiction or abuse (other than in the “using more than intended” factor but even there an absolute amount isn’t introduced) and I don’t think it should be a necessary part of the solution either.” Moderation is important when dealing with substances that can become abusing. There are treatment centers that focus on moderation as a treatment goal.
There is a website that offers moderation management and online alcohol drinking guidelines. This website and guild lines provided have proven to work for problem drinkers. A real life option is learning about moderation and not completely giving up alcohol in your life. The website gives calendars and support groups to help learn moderation. It is a choice of changing your lifestyle but just in moderation.
A study was done to see if technology can guide behavioral change in moderation management instead of abstinence in heavy drinkers. “Participants who used the Moderation Management website alone drank a little less in each of the followups and were able to raise their average percent abstinence from 16% to a little over 20%. Importantly, even on drinking days these participants reduced their blood alcohol content (BAC) levels by almost 50%” The participants in the study were heavy drinkers.
Most individuals that abuse alcohol are not among the heavy abusers and moderation could be a viable option for them. There has been proven results of both sides of the treatment options.
Is moderation management for everyone that has recently finished with treatment? No, it is not, but it is an option that they can consider. Everyone handles their recovery in their own way and for some, abstinence might be the perfect recovery, others could be moderation.