Sample Psychology Thesis Paper on Substance Abuse

Substance Abuse

Abstract

The utilization of medically and non-medically specified drugs that lead to periodic adverse social impacts, for instance, failure to complete the set undertakings, legal matters, or interpersonal disagreements normally imply substance abuse. This results in stern social effects such as legal penalties, slackness, and loss of employment, which may be unfavorable to the abuser and other individuals. In this regard, the abusers necessitate treatment for them to surmount the various problems they experience. The psychodynamic, behavioral, and humanistic approaches offer successful interventions that seek to boost client self-responsiveness and decrease or eradicate substance abuse predicaments. Many features of the psychodynamic therapy have advanced from psychoanalytic theory and have been medically utilized to a broad scope of psychological difficulties. Studies affirm that brief psychodynamic therapies attain their efficacy when abstinence is realized. They may be significantly helpful for clients who have modest use of substances. The behavioral movement focuses on the deliberation, cognitive plans, certainties, attitudes, and ascriptions that sway a person’s sentiments and mediate the connection involving precursors and conduct. The purpose of the behavioral approach is either decreasing impairment or promoting abstinence. Deterrence of relapse highlights the significance of getting prepared for the possibility of its occurrence and establishing the means of avoiding it by stopping the practice rapidly and with little or no damage. The humanistic movement deems human nature excellent because of the intrinsic capability to sustain healthy, substantial associations and making judgments in the concern of oneself and other people. Humanistic therapists deliberate on assisting the abusers to get rid of their detrimental conducts by targeting the existing conscious practices. Therapists endeavor to create a therapeutic connection that is responsive, accepting, and focused on the abusers’ inner inspiration to realize a healthy course.

Substance Abuse

Introduction

People who are regularly late for work due to late-night alcohol consumption, other substance abuse issues, experience difficult work days because of hangovers, and regularly call in ill may indicate cases of possible substance abuse. Instances of parents failing to take care of their children, a partner not catering for the needs of the other, and frequently consuming too much alcohol are warning indications of substance abuse (Knapp, Kieling, & Beck, 2015). The use of medically and non-medically stipulated drugs that lead to recurrent adverse social impacts, for instance, failure to accomplish the set tasks, legal issues, or interpersonal disagreements characteristically signify substance abuse. This results in severe social outcomes such as legal penalties, negligence, and loss of employment, which may be detrimental to the abuser and other people. In this regard, the abusers require treatment for them to rise above the numerous problems they face. The psychodynamic, behavioral, and humanistic movements offer effective interventions aimed at boosting client self-awareness and decreasing or eliminating substance abuse problems.   

Psychodynamic Movement

Psychodynamic therapy centers on unconscious practices since they are evident in the present conducts of the client (Mundon, Anderson, & Najavits, 2015). The objectives of psychodynamic therapy are client self-consciousness and comprehension of the impact of the past on the current conducts. Psychodynamic movement facilitates the client’s evaluation of unresolved conflicts and indications that occur from past dysfunctional associations and become noticeable in the requirement and desire to abuse alcohol and other drugs. Many aspects of the psychodynamic movement have evolved from psychoanalytic theory and have been medically employed to a broad scope of psychological problems. Studies affirm that brief psychodynamic therapies realize their efficacy when abstinence is well ascertained. They might be greatly valuable for clients who have no higher than moderate use of substances.  

It is vital for the psychodynamic therapist to understand regarding the properties of the abused substance and its subculture to initiate a successful recovery plan. Psychodynamic therapy represents the oldest of the contemporary therapies, which denotes that it is founded on greatly advanced and multifaceted approaches to human development and interrelations. Supportive-expressive psychotherapy as a psychodynamic technique has been acclimatized for application with individuals who have substance abuse problems; it has been tailored for utilization with opiate dependence alongside methadone upholding therapy and use of cocaine. The core conflictual relationship theme (CCRT) perception also may assist clients in addressing relapse, which is reckoned by nearly every professional as a fundamental and natural element of recovery. Relapse provides the client and supportive-expressive therapist the chance to evaluate the manner in which core response from others and response of the self can operate as prompts and develop approaches to prevent the induction in the future. Lastly, supportive-expressive therapy is beneficial to the contribution of clients in organizations, for example, Alcoholics Anonymous, or could be employed as a means of establishing the reluctance to take part in such groups (Mundon et al., 2015).

Behavioral Movement

Cognitive-behavioral therapy has realized extensive utilization in the management of substance abuse (Cautela & Ishaq, 2013). It originates from the behavioral theory and centers on both standard habituation and operant learning. It is strongly connected with the cognitive social learning theory where notions regarding observational conduct, the significance of modeling, and the task of cognitive anticipations in the determination of conduct are obtained. Behavioral movement concentrates on the consideration, cognitive plans, convictions, attitudes, and attributions that sway a person’s sentiments and mediate the association involving precursors and conduct. In the majority of substance abuse therapy settings, cognitive-behavioral approach holds outstanding features. Before centering particularly on the cognitive-behavioral approach, there is a need to examine the attributes that act as the basis of and contribute considerably to substance abuse therapy.  

Contrary to the community reinforcement approach, which integrates a broad scope of people in the treatment progression, behavioral self-will training centers on the abuser and the efforts to decrease or stop drug abuse with or without assistance. The objective of the behavioral movement is either decreasing harm or fostering abstinence (Cautela & Ishaq, 2013). In the case of alcoholism, behavioral approach embarks on a number of steps. To start with, the client determines the highest quantity of beer per day. The client then starts to evaluate the amount of alcohol consumed and the drinking situation to offer the foundation of a functional assessment. The client starts to adjust the level of alcohol consumption by changing from a brand having high alcohol content to one that contains less, drinking slowly for a long time, or expanding the intervals between instances of alcohol consumption. The client has to build up the ability to reject drinks boldly if offered (Sobell, Sobell, & Ward, 2013). He should develop a fortification approach to reward the realization of the drinking-associated objectives.

Through the practice of self-control, the client should have the ability to establish the social, psychological, and environmental cues that elicit excessive drinking (McCarthy, Keefe, & Barber, 2016). He should learn new tactics of addressing problems and avoiding alcohol consumption and employ them instead of depending on alcoholism as a way of escaping setback resolution. Finally, the client ought to try to practice the means of avoiding relapse. Though therapists may assist abusers in behavioral self-restraint, the abusers uphold primary responsibility for modification of conduct. Prevention of relapse underscores the significance of getting ready for the likelihood of its occurrence and establishing ways of avoiding it by stopping the practice quickly and with little or no harm. The objective is to assist the abusers in the establishment of a better balance and boosting involvement in worthwhile and pleasant actions while decreasing the rate and sources of distress.        

Humanistic Movement

Humanistic and existential approaches employ a broad scope of approaches, therapeutic objectives, intervention policies, and research techniques (Madson, Bethea, Daniel, & Necaise, 2008). They are related by their highlighting of the comprehension of human encounters and concentrating on the clients instead of the symptoms. Psychological challenges (such as drug abuse) are taken to be the outcome of inhibited capacity to create dependable, consequential, and independent decisions concerning the means of living. Interventions seek to enhance self-consciousness and self-understanding of the clients. The humanistic movement considers human nature good because of the inherent ability to sustain healthy, considerable associations and making judgments in the interest of oneself and other people. Humanistic therapists concentrate on assisting the abusers to get rid of their harmful conducts by targeting the current conscious practices. Therapists attempt to generate a therapeutic connection that is friendly and accepting and that is focused on the abusers’ inner motivation to realize a healthy course.

Under the humanistic movement, therapists tackle the aspects that shape drug abuse problems, for instance, loss of hope, dread of death or collapse, segregation from other people, and poor spiritual insight. The humanistic movement might be especially significant for short-term drug abuse instances since they have a tendency of enhancing therapeutic relationship, boosting self-control, centering on possible inner aspects, and determining the client as the person accountable for recuperation. Since the approaches under the humanistic movement seek to tackle the underlying facets of drug abuse problems, they might not all the time directly deal with the act of abuse (Galizio & Maisto, 2013). As long as drug abuse is the mainly occurring challenge and stays in the forefront, the humanistic movement is most successfully employed alongside traditional approaches in assisting the recovery of abusers. Nonetheless, most of the basic attitudes that have been established to back the humanistic approach may be employed in nearly all other forms of therapy as a means of enhancing the client-therapist interaction.  

Conclusion

Substance abusers are usually late for or absent from work attributable to such things as late-night consumption of alcohol and substance abuse issues, the experience of intricate work days because of hangovers, and often calling in ill. The psychodynamic, behavioral, and humanistic therapies offer valuable interventions aimed at improving client self-awareness and decreasing or eradicating substance abuse problems. Psychodynamic movement centers on unconscious progressions since they are apparent in the present conducts of clients. Cognitive-behavioral therapy has attained all-embracing utilization in managing substance abuse. Via the practice of self-discipline, the client should have the aptitude to establish the social, psychological, and environmental signals that elicit too much drinking. Because the approaches under the humanistic movement seek to undertake the underlying facets of drug abuse difficulties, they might not all the time directly handle the act of abuse. As long as drug abuse is the mostly occurring challenge and stays in the forefront, the humanistic movement is most productively employed together with traditional approaches in assisting the convalescence of abusers.

References

Cautela, J. R., & Ishaq, W. (Eds.). (2013). Contemporary issues in behavior therapy: Improving the human condition. Berlin, Germany: Springer Science & Business Media.

Galizio, M., & Maisto, S. A. (Eds.). (2013). Determinants of substance abuse: Biological, psychological, and environmental factors. Berlin, Germany: Springer Science & Business Media.

Knapp, P., Kieling, C., & Beck, A. T. (2015). What do psychotherapists do? A systematic review and meta-regression of surveys. Psychotherapy and Psychosomatics, 84(6), 377-378.

Madson, M. B., Bethea, A. R., Daniel, S., & Necaise, H. (2008). The state of substance abuse treatment training in counseling and counseling psychology programs: What is and is not happening. Journal of Teaching in the Addictions, 7(2), 164-178.

McCarthy, K. S., Keefe, J. R., & Barber, J. P. (2016). Goldilocks on the couch: Moderate levels of psychodynamic and process-experiential technique predict outcome in psychodynamic therapy. Psychotherapy Research, 26(3), 307-317.

Mundon, C. R., Anderson, M. L., & Najavits, L. M. (2015). Attitudes toward substance abuse clients: An empirical study of clinical psychology trainees. Journal of psychoactive drugs, 47(4), 293-300.

Sobell, L. C., Sobell, M. B., & Ward, E. (Eds.). (2013). Evaluating alcohol and drug abuse treatment effectiveness: Recent advances. Amsterdam, Netherlands: Elsevier.