THE MINNESOTA 12 STEP MODEL IS THE MOST SUCCESSFUL TREATMENT METHOD USED FOR TREATING ADDICTION.
The Minnesota model was developed in America and based around the 12 step model of recovery originally written by Bill Wilson who was the co-founder of Alcoholics Anonymous. The 12 Steps have been the foundation of nearly all fellowships including N.A. (Narcotics Anonymous), C.A. (Cocaine Anonymous) and G.A. (Gamblers Anonymous).
The 12 steps of recovery have helped millions of people worldwide to recover from addiction and it is the most successful recovery method and the only one to provide long-term success. The Minnesota model is seen as the basis for a successful treatment programme.
Change only works with accredited treatment centres that utilise the Minnesota model.
WHAT IS ADDICTION?
Addiction can be explained in many ways, one being as an unhealthy dependency on any substance or behaviour that has negative and destructive consequences or causes significant distress for the person. If one is having trouble in relationships, work, emotional stability, or other consequences ( Legal and health problems), these are messages that signal a problem with addiction.
Addiction is not something that just happens. There are reasons behind addictive behaviour. One main reason addictions start is because initially, the result of engaging in the behaviour is pleasurable. Certain pathways in the brain are stimulated, which produce chemicals that are rewarding to the person, and thereby the behaviour is reinforced. The addictive behaviour, at least early on, is also often done socially, and serves as a common bond between people and increases feelings of acceptance in the group.
Another powerful motive for engaging in addictive behaviour is that it serves as an escape from painful feelings and situations. Then there is force of habit, which is a tendency to repeat behaviours that are known and familiar, as a source of comfort. The addiction becomes like an old friend, albeit a destructive one, and one that eventually isolates you from people and opportunities that are life affirming.
WHY IS IT HARMFUL AND WHAT CAN BE DONE?
Because the addiction becomes a central focus in a person's life, any threats to it are defended against. This is commonly observed as the addict's denial. On some deeper level, there may be some awareness of the negative consequences, but they are overshadowed by the pull of the addiction. It takes a lot of courage and perseverance to overcome an addiction, and it is hard, if not impossible, to do alone. So many changes need to occur in the person's lifestyle (mental, emotional, physical, social), and support is crucial. A guide or coach is often essential to help ensure success, but most important is the willingness of the addicted people to get real with themselves and stay committed to the goal of recovery.