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Role of Psychosocial Interventions and Motivation in Alcohol Use Disorder

It was a very pleasant evening when Micky decided to quit alcoholism. He was very confident as he was ready to adopt any kind of treatment. The situation was quite different for his friend Anthony. His personality was so different from Micky. Anthony finds it quite difficult to accept change with ease especially in case of any kind of treatment.

One thing was similar. Both of them agreed to get rid of alcohol use disorder. However, their approach was different. Finally, Micky was advised and also supported by his family to use psychosocial interventions. It resulted in a very positive way and he is now living a healthy life.

On the other side, his friend Anthony is still reluctant to adopt any treatment including psychosocial interventions. Resultantly, he is still facing the trauma of alcohol use disorder. He is still not ready to go for any kind of treatment. However, he is motivated by witnessing Micky's success. Probably, he needs a little boost up, maybe from his family to survive from Alcoholism.

The above simple story of two friends suggests that everyone doesn't agree and adopt any specific treatment. It depends upon multiple factors like:-

· social background

· family support

· motivation

· decision making

Selecting psychosocial interventions

Motivation and encouragement play a vital role for patients in adapting psychosocial interventions. It can be in the form of alcohol counselling and participation in a mutual-help group. Patients with a mild disorder (like Micky) can recover by only psychosocial interventions. However, in complicated cases like Anthony, it may not be sufficient.

The main suggestion is to start initial treatment with a structured and evidence-based psychosocial intervention. It is for those patients who are willing to use psychosocial interventions rather than medication. There is no specific psychosocial intervention for everyone. It is also a considerable factor that there is no concrete evidence or clinical proof that one intervention is better than the others.

Individual patient factors favour a certain approach for example for those patients:-

Who have motivation and capability:- combined behavioural intervention, motivational interviewing and 12-step facilitation would be highly favourable.

Having limited cognitive abilities and encouragement:- to go for the use of mutual help groups or contingency management approaches would be more useful.

Who have problems related to close relationships (like it can be related to partners, friends or family):- couples or family therapy would be more helpful.


It is better to have some kind of psychosocial intervention for patients of alcohol use disorder rather than no such treatment. However, it is important to choose the right kind of treatment as per the severity and mindset of the patient.

There is a possibility that one form of psychosocial treatment may result in better than another. Motivation also plays an important role in this debate. Close relationships especially family members can play key role in adopting psychosocial treatment. Following readings also helped similar patients to cope with these issues:-

In the end, let’s see this amazing video to save us from Alcohol use disorder.


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