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Long-Term Study Shows Significant, Sustainable Positive Treatment Outcomes

 

Abstinence

The study, a joint effort of Syracuse University, the Research Institute on Addictions, and Elements Behavioral Health, followed dozens of patients from arrival in treatment and then again at one, three and six months following discharge. At program entry, the patients were using drugs and/or alcohol four out of five days on average. One month after discharge, however, study participants were abstinent from alcohol more than 97% of the time and abstinent from other drugs close to 96%. And those numbers remained relatively stable as the study progressed. Six months later, the participants were abstaining from alcohol close to 92% of the time and from drugs more than 94% of the time.

Cravings

The study looked at important factors linked to relapse such as drug craving and depression. Clients consistently reported that the frequency of cravings plummeted. On admission, clients reported craving alcohol or other drugs between six to 10 times a day. With treatment this fell to less than once per day — an improvement that was maintained six months later. The strength of those cravings also diminished, plummeting from highs of “very strong” to hover between “a little bit” to “not at all” at the one- and three-month marks and to settle at just below “a little bit” at six months.

 

 

 

Depression

Depression is strongly linked to relapse in the first year following treatment. Clients in our programs showed marked and sustained improvements in mood during the follow-up period. Most participants rated “severity of depressed mood” as moderate for the month prior to treatment. This improved and was reported as “minimal” one month after leaving the program. And that feeling stayed relatively consistent across the next six months. Perhaps most encouraging, participants reported better quality of life, going from a rating of “pretty bad” to “pretty good” at the one-month mark — and staying there. To learn more, call 888-645-7453.

Study participants received treatment at one of four Elements Behavioral Health® facilities — two of which provided residential treatment and two of which provided a two-day hospital program with supported housing.

The study relied on self-reporting for its data, but those results were also verified by someone close to the participant, usually a family member. This process was the focus of a second part of the study that examined the realities of evaluating addiction treatment and offered confirmation that accurate reporting can indeed be obtained. Such results can then be used to help inform and improve addiction treatment.

 

The studies are presented under the following titles:

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