Friday, October 15, 2010

Sober living houses help addicts clean up

People being treated for drug and alcohol problems in the community often experience problems because they still live in an environment where they are surrounded by drugs. One way around this is Sober Living Houses which are alcohol- and drug-free environments. They don't offer any formal treatment services but encourage, or require, attendance at self-help groups like Alcoholics Anonymous. Residents are free to stay as long as they like and the houses are financed by residents' fees, some of which at least can be payed by welfare. A team of researchers from the Alcohol Research Group in Emeryville, California studied 55 people living in Sober Living Houses. The participants showed significant improvement on measures of alcohol and drug use, arrests and days worked, got into less trouble with the law and did better in the jobs market. They did well as far as their drug and alcohol use was concerned and involvement in self-help groups was associated with reductions in alcohol and drug use.

Polcin, Douglas L. ... [et al] - Eighteen-month outcomes for clients receiving combined outpatient treatment and sober living houses Journal of Substance Use October 2010, 15(5), 352-366

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