Dr. Avart proposes that one of the 5 key Ingredients for Success in any comprehensive addiction treatment program should be a deliberate focus on patient / family-centered addiction treatment. Although the drug-addicted patient needs to be in control and take the wheel and steer towards recovery, families must also heal along with the patient. While Dr. Avart’s goal is always the restoration of an addicted patient’s independence, he also believes that it is essential and meaningful to include the family in the recovery process whenever possible.
The most important thing one can expect in family-centered treatment is that commitment and involvement by all parties will produce more successful addiction treatment outcomes. Understand that everyone’s perspective in a family is different when it comes to coping with a family member’s addiction. The journey is shared, but the experiences are always unique. Too often a family is damaged by miscommunications, misunderstandings, and differences of perspective that color how we react to one another. When we react to one another and when we communicate, it must be done with respect, honesty, and with common goals in mind.
Therefore, Dr. Avart encourages a patient’s family members to commit to understanding all of the components involved in this program, including strength conditioning, biofeedback training, thought exercises, emotional intelligence, and more. We’ve seen time and time again how including the family in the recovery process is crucial to properly recognizing the positive steps the patient is making throughout their recovery. Family involvement through the patient’s recovery can be complex, but serves as a powerful source of help during the treatment process and when working together to set goals.
Patient and family-centered addiction treatment is an important part of the recovery process because families need to heal in conjunction with the patients. Although the patient is the main focus of treatment throughout recovery, family involvement improves communication and provides a shared, more complete understanding of what is occurring. Including family in a patient’s recovery increases engagement and retention in addiction treatment while focusing on the independence of the patient… but it HEALS family members too.