A 12-step recovery program provides support and education for people who are trying to stay sober from alcohol or drugs. This self-help program is held in a group setting or individually with a professional counsellor, with or without affected family members.
The philosophy of a 12-step program is that once a person has an alcohol or drug use problem, he or she will always have an alcohol or drug use problem. The person must admit to being powerless over the drugs or alcohol and vow to take one day at a time. While no religion is followed, the program does acknowledge a "higher power" to which members must learn to turn over their problems. The program teaches the person to change negative attitudes and behaviours into positive ones. Use of drugs or alcohol is not allowed while participating in a 12-step recovery program.
A 12-step program is not considered a treatment program for alcohol or drug abuse, but it can serve as an important support group.
Medical Review:E. Gregory Thompson, MD - Internal Medicine & Donald Sproule, MDCM, CCFP - Family Medicine & Adam Husney, MD - Family Medicine & Martin J. Gabica, MD - Family Medicine & Christine R. Maldonado, PhD - Behavioral Health