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There is still a need for a spiritual approach in recovery services. But such an approach has many challenges. Nevertheless, we should offer solutions to problems our clients bring to recovery services; problems they previously used drugs and alcohol to solve.
Current best practices for substance abuse treatment requires that we assess for substance abuse in addition to chronic mental and emotional problems. A significant percentage of persons will require supportive medications for long-standing or even newly discovered mental illness. For those, there should be immediate efforts to support them with proper medication(s), therapy, or hospitalization, if necessary.
However, these responses do not solve all symptoms and do not resolve the more serious human conditions. Because addictions cause people to present with resistance, denial, and secrecy, there is a need for a community capable of support while growth and change takes place. A spiritual assessment will help discover areas of need and suggest ways to begin a spiritual recovery process. Spiritual supports bring connections and offer skills such as relaxation and meditation that meet the need for non-medicinal ways to address anxiety, grief, and resentments.
Persons with a history of 12-Step recovery have a much easier path for recovery than persons without such a foundation. Also Celebrate Recovery is a Christian based program different than AA but with a shared purpose of helping persons with addictions find recovery and a growing faith. It too may be the open door to your recovery. Other pathways include finding a spiritual director, talking to your pastor or Rabbi. Spiritual care starts with a desire to change.