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Utilising SMART Recovery

Learning About Smart


Although 12 step programs are more common, SMART has proven to be a good alternative to these group programs. SMART has also proved to be helpful for people with concurrent conditions such as comorbid depression or anxiety.

People suffering from addictions and behavioural problems can be treated with the help of Self-Management and Recovery Training (SMART). Getting a connection to your inner feelings is what the program advocates for when someone is trying to stop addiction.

Members get to minimise and even stop their addiction when on the SMART program.


The latest methods of stopping the dependency on drugs are used on SMART program to help the members.


SMART is regularly updated to provide strategies researchers find most efficient.

Organizations like the National Institute On Drug Abuse And The American Academy Of Family Physicians have recognized SMART as an effective method of overcoming an addiction.


Features Of Smart

SMART works on the premise that it is an empowerment tool in itself unlike the 12 step program that encourages the members to see themselves as helpless. Well-trained voluntary servants help participants examine particular behaviours to find weak spots which need special attention. Then, participants undergo self trust training, which enables them to control their dependence behaviour. In order to teach these skills, SMART applies methods borrowed from motivational enhancement and cognitive behaviour therapies. There are 4 point that are involved in these program that the addicts follow.



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The Four Point Programme

The 4 point that are followed are clearly outlined in the programs manual. The effective methods of staying away from the drugs are also clearly outlined in this manual.

The 4 point program is unlike step programs, which have been designed by other organizations. Participants have the option of tackling a specific point in any order depending upon the needs they have.

If a 12-Step program does not appeal to you or a loved one, give SMART a chance. Ask us for help, and we'll find a SMART meeting nearby call 0800 246 1509.


  • Maintaining And Building Motivation
  • Willing to stay sober is an important factor of success in reaching continuous recovery.
  • Then, the patient is required to make a list of advantages and disadvantages of getting sober.
  • Overcoming The Desires
  • Point number two addresses cravings and what brings them on.
  • Using distraction techniques and other methods, the participants learn how to deal with their cravings.
  • Also, participants find and cope with irrational visions of urges to use the substance.
  • Controlling Actions, Reactions And Reflections
  • Point 3 educates participants about the need to prevent relapse by an examination of the thoughts, feelings and behaviours that can lead to drug use.
  • The participants study self-acceptance and learn to manage unpleasant feelings such as depression.
  • Living A Sober And Balanced Life
  • Choosing to live without depending on drugs is a huge step in life.
  • Long term recovery requires that you learn how to live your life without the addictive substance.
  • At point four, all participants make a thorough inventory of their priorities.
  • The future is approached realistically by setting out attainable goals and milestones.

Similarities And Differences Between 12 Step Programme And Smart

The programs that use the 12 stages have some similar features to the SMART program. Both aim at helping substance addicted patients quit the habits. In both programs, the identity of the members remains protected. There are success stories associated with both these programs.

The meaning of overdependence on the drugs is what tends to be the contradicting factor between the two set of programs.

The people that are dependant on the drugs are not said to be "addicts" in the SMART program. Such labels are considered to be discouraging and ineffective. SMART doesn't see recovery as a lifelong journey which is another major difference. Participants can consider themselves as graduated from recovery to begin a new and a healthy life.

The 12-step program is not considered voluntarily by many people because they do not prefer to believe that they are powerless against their addiction or giving themselves away to a higher power. And conversely, participants in SMART approach their recovery by taking responsibility for their own lives.

Helpful support is, however, provided by SMART and the 12-step programs. Each person is encouraged to select the program they deem suitable to their need. One technique may not be efficient in helping as person but it may work for another one.


Qualifying For The Programme

Graduation from recovery is one of the special aspects of SMART. The chances of a person going back to the drugs is minimal when the are on the SMART program.

The desires to use the drugs are completely gone when a person is nearing the completion of the SMART program.

Once the SMART participants come to the last step, they have all necessary skills to live a sober life.


Will Smart Suit You

SMART helps people with all kinds of substance abuse issues. People with other compulsive behaviours such as eating disorders and gambling can also benefit from this program. Smart is also used to treat underlying mental health problems such as depression.