William White, in his new book, The History of Addiction Counseling in the United States, says the following:

“There are four defining premises of addiction counseling that historically separate the addiction counselor from other helping roles. These premises are that: 1) severe and persistent alcohol and other drug problems constitute a primary disorder rather than a superficial symptom of underlying problems, 2) the multiple life problems experienced by AOD-impacted individuals can be resolved only within the framework of recovery initiation and maintenance, 3) many individuals with high problem complexity (biological vulnerability, high severity, co-morbidity) and low “recovery capital” (internal assets, family and social support) are unable to achieve stable recovery without professional assistance, and 4) professional assistance is best provided by individuals with special knowledge and expertise in facilitating the physical, psychological, socio-cultural and often spiritual journey from addiction to recovery.”

Read more: Addiction Counseling: What Makes it Different?

Addiction is a bio-psycho-social disorder characterized by a maledaptive pattern of behavior or substance use which leads to significant impairment in a person’s life. It is critical to understand addiction as a complex issue with roots that seem to be:

Read more: What Constitutes an Addiction?

Treatment for Substance Use Disorders, just like treatment for any chronic illness, has evolved over the years as our knowledge has increased. Through experience, research and improved technology we now know more about the progression of addiction, about brain chemistry and the effects of drugs on brain activity, and, through outcome studies, what actually works and what does not. We have seen the emergence of a whole new profession – the addiction counselor. We have seen the development of college degree programs focused on addiction studies. And we have seen this thing called “treatment” become big business.

Read more: Just What is Treatment Anyway?

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Genesis Programs, Inc. is a CARF accredited addiction and substance abuse treatment facility.