What Are the Stats for Drug and Alcohol Recovery? How Many Users Actually Stop?

Question by : what are the stats for drug and alcohol recovery? How many users actually stop?
This question applies to addicts. How many drug addicts and alcoholics actually kick their habits? Let’s say 20 people go into treatment, how many of those 20 will get clean for a significant amount of time: 5 years or more?

Best answer:

Answer by Who Am I
Unfortunately the number is pretty low. Out of 20 I would say maybe 4-5, if that.

Answer by raysny
Depends on the drug and the type of treatment. Over 90% of treatment in the US is 12step based: AA/NA. The rest is mostly Narconon (Scientology based) or heavily religious.

NA is generally seen as having a success rate equal to or less than AA. AA is general seen as having about a 5% success rate; the rate of natural remission (quitting on ones own) is about 5%.

“There is a high rate of recovery among alcoholics and addicts, treated and untreated. According to one estimate, heroin addicts break the habit in an average of 11 years. Another estimate is that at least 50% of alcoholics eventually free themselves although only 10% are ever treated. One recent study found that 80% of all alcoholics who recover for a year or more do so on their own, some after being unsuccessfully treated. When a group of these self-treated alcoholics was interviewed, 57% said they simply decided that alcohol was bad for them. Twenty-nine percent said health problems, frightening experiences, accidents, or blackouts persuaded them to quit. Others used such phrases as “Things were building up” or “I was sick and tired of it.” Support from a husband or wife was important in sustaining the resolution.”
Treatment of Drug Abuse and Addiction — Part III, The Harvard Mental Health Letter, October 1995.

What works?:
(Note that 12step facilitation is rated # 37, AA # 38 out of the 48 methods tested.)

Out of 20 people that join AA, one will receive a one year coin. About 1 in 3 who receive a 1-year coin will be around to receive a 3-year coin. Of course that doesn’t mean that they all went out and got drunk/high, it does mean that for whatever reason, they found the program lacking.

The Effectiveness of the Twelve-Step Treatment:

The first step of AA and NA have people accepting they are powerless over their addictions, they can never be cured, and that only God can relieve their urges on a day-by-day basis. Treatment methods that empower people to make changes in their lives have better outcomes.

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