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Support Groups for Addiction Recovery

Addiction support groups can provide a beneficial way to promote and support recovery from substance misuse, both during and after treatment.1 If you or a loved one are struggling with addiction, you can benefit from learning more about how local addiction support groups can fit into your recovery plan. This article will help you understand different support groups and explain how to find “addiction support groups near me.”

Benefits of Addiction Support Groups in Recovery

There are numerous benefits of addiction recovery support groups. Research has shown that support groups can complement treatment and are also an important part of continued recovery programs, both for those with SUDs as well as those with co-occurring disorders and addiction.1,2

Some of the benefits support groups provide include helping people engage in treatment. They also offer opportunities to practice and strengthen coping skills learned during treatment and provide valuable peer support from others who are also in recovery, fostering improved interpersonal skills, and improving feelings of self-efficacy.1,3

There are a variety of common programs as well as some more non-traditional programs, but the most important thing is to find one that works for you because you’ll be more likely to stick with

Traditional 12-Step Addiction Support Groups

12-Step programs involve working through different stages of recovery, which are based on specific principles. These principles include viewing addiction as a disease that can be mitigated but never eliminated, surrendering to a higher power, providing help to others who are struggling, and active involvement in recovery by attending regular meetings.2

Alcoholics Anonymous (AA), Narcotics Anonymous (NA), and Cocaine Anonymous (CA) are some of the most popular peer support groups with 12-Step programs.3 In these groups, the principles of the 12-Step program typically center around the concept of a higher power, which does not need to mean God but can mean anything that you feel is ‘more’ than yourself.2 However, some people may be put off by spiritual concepts, so they may benefit from a different approach.2

Regardless of the approach taken, these groups provide a substance-free support network and provide participants with a structured program and guidelines to support their recovery.2 Studies have shown that involvement in AA’s 12-Step program, for example, has led to positive outcomes such as self-efficacy and healthy coping, which has been linked to better outcomes.3

People may join a peer support group with a 12-Step program while in treatment, which can include different levels of care, such as:

Alcoholics Anonymous (AA) Support Groups

Alcoholics Anonymous is a nonprofessional 12-Step peer support group designed for people in recovery from alcohol misuse and alcohol use disorders (AUD).4 It involves the above-mentioned components associated with 12-Step groups, with a specific focus on abstinence from drinking.4 AA offers a comprehensive 12‐Step program that can promote psychological well‐being, improve interpersonal skills, help people cope with stress, and help people adapt to a sober lifestyle.4

Alcohol addiction support groups like AA can therefore benefit people struggling with addiction to alcohol or alcohol misuse, which also includes binge drinking and heavy drinking.5 According to the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism, binge drinking means any pattern of drinking that raises your blood alcohol level to 0.08% or higher, which roughly correlates to 5 or more drinks for men or 4 or more for women in around 2 hours.5 Heavy drinking is defined as more than 4 drinks on any day or more than 14 drinks per week for men or more than 3 drinks on any day or more than 7 drinks per week for women.5

AA also offers addiction support groups online.

Narcotics Anonymous Support Groups

As with AA, Narcotics Anonymous groups also follow the 12-Step approach, but the focus is more on recovery from drug addiction, although it can also include alcohol misuse as well.6 According to NA, a key to its success is the idea that people with addiction help each other in recovery.6 It can therefore benefit anyone struggling with drug use of any kind, as well as alcohol use.6

The benefits of drug addiction support groups like NA include a similar recovery process to AA and a peer support network.6 People meet to share their successes and challenges in recovering from addiction and help each other in their efforts to lead productive lives by working through the 12-Step program.6

Non-12-Step Addiction Recovery Support Groups

People who prefer a secular approach to recovery may benefit from non-12-Step programs.7 The difference between these programs is that non-12-Step programs do not involve working through the 12 stages of recovery and do not require submitting to a higher power.7 Rather, they often rely more on the concepts of internal control and personal empowerment, do not view people with addiction as powerless, and do not view addiction as a lifelong struggle.7

Several common non-12-Step approaches will be outlined below.

Addiction Support Groups for Families

Addiction can have a significant impact on families and loved ones. Different addiction support groups for families and loved ones can be helpful when a family member or loved one is in rehab or recovery. Family addiction support groups can provide support and provide a forum where people can share their personal experiences.12

These groups include:

  • Al-anon. This is a group designed for anyone who has been affected by another person’s drinking. It provides support based on Al-anon principles and offers a forum where people can share their experiences.13 It is a spiritual fellowship based on the 12-Step method.14
  • Meetings are designed for those between the ages of 13 and 18 who have been affected by someone else’s drinking.15 Teens can share their experiences and gain support from other teens who are in similar situations.15 Alateen groups are available online in their family groups mobile app.
  • Nar-anon or Narateen. Groups are intended for people who have loved ones who are dealing with addiction; these are spiritual groups based on the principles of the 12-Step method.16
  • Adult Children of Alcoholics. This is a 12-Step program for people who grew up in dysfunctional homes and were affected by abuse, neglect, and trauma.17

Get Help Finding Addiction Recovery Support Groups

Starting a recovery program that offers mutual support groups can provide valuable benefits for attaining sobriety, connecting with others who know what it’s like to be in your shoes, and starting the road to a healthier, drug- or alcohol-free lifestyle.1

American Addiction Centers can help people recover from substance misuse and substance use disorders (SUDs). If you or a loved one are struggling and have been searching for “local addiction support groups near me,” please call to speak to one of our caring admissions navigator about treatment options, learn about using health insurance to pay for rehab, and verify your insurance.

Beyond recovery support groups outside of treatment, there are also support groups that are available while in treamtent. You can look at some of the facilities listed below to see if they provide the program you are looking for:

Cost of treatment may feel overwhelming but there are various options to help cover rehab. To find out if your insurance covers treatment at an American Addiction Centers facility, click here, or fill out the form below. Your information is kept 100% confidential. You can also click here to find a rehab near me.

You can also easily and quickly check if your insurance is in-network by filling out the form below.

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