When it comes to substance abuse treatment group counseling offers a number of benefits, but this method alone is not effective and group sessions need to be combined with other treatment methods and counseling types. Group counseling shows the individual with the problem that they are not alone, and that there are many other people who struggle with the same issues when it comes to drugs or alcohol. Group counseling can offer support and feedback from peers, which can be very beneficial. Individual counseling is also important because the person with substance abuse problems will have a unique combination of invisible wounds and hidden traumas that need to be addressed and resolved. Group counseling can not offer the same individual benefits as one on one sessions, but it has other benefits instead.
Group counseling as part of substance abuse treatment can be offered on an outpatient basis or provided as part of the daily routine with an inpatient setting. By listening to others discuss their struggles with drugs or alcohol the individual starts to see that their own struggles are not unique. Often the individual also comes to realize that others may be even worse off, and this can help put things into perspective. Having peers provide feedback can be crucial because this can force the individual to face up to their actions and understand the consequences of them. Group counseling is typically offered by almost every substance abuse treatment facility, both inpatient and outpatient, because only one professional therapist is required for a group of people.