Motivational Enhancement: Introduction | What Is Motivation? | Motivational Enhancement Interventions | Motivational Enhancement in Alcohol Treatment | Brief Motivational Interventions for Alcohol Use
Disorders | Motivational Enhancement and Drug Abuse | Motivational Enhancement With Dually Diagnosed Populations | Conclusion | Key Points | References | Suggested Reading
Patient motivation is a necessary ingredient
in substance abuse treatment and recovery. Because of the reinforcing
nature of addictive substances and the physiological and psychological
reliance they engender, individuals with problematic and dependent
patterns of substance use often refuse to acknowledge problems or
seek treatment. Even when substance abusers arrive at a treatment
program, many are ambivalent about the need to modify their substance
use and resist any notion that they need to reduce their use or
abstain completely. Going to treatment is not a panacea that turns ambivalence
and lack of readiness into commitment to change—a significant
number of individuals who enter a treatment facility fail to complete
the treatment and many drop out after intake or a single session
(Simpson and Joe 1993; Wickizer et al. 1994).
Engagement in substance and alcohol abuse treatment is sporadic.
Even those who comply and complete treatment do not always achieve
stated goals. Reluctance to seek help, attrition, and relapse are
significant problems facing treatment providers as they try to help
individuals who abuse drugs and alcohol along the path to recovery.
All of these barriers are connected in some way to patient motivation.