Describe characteristics of addictive populations. Discuss the challenges of working with a specific addictive population such as alcoholism or drugs. Discuss the theoretical perspective(s) that you think most appropriate for working with this population and why?
There are several characteristics ones exemplifies in demonstrating addiction. Addictive behavior occurs when a substance, activity or behavior becomes the main focus of an individuals life, resulting physical, mental or social harm to themselves or others(2021). Dealing with the difficult emotions will ultimate be the biggest challenges when working with addictive population. There are several Theories that I feel are appropriate with working with this population such as genetic theories, exposure theories (both biological and conditioning), and adaptation theories. I think this combination of theories will help to create a environment for success using a addiction model.
(2021), 13 Characteristics of Addiction How Do You Know When Someone is an Addict?. 13 Characteristics of Addiction How Do You Know When Someone is an Addict?
Addictive populations have an impairment in behavioral control and cravings, an inability to abstain from the substance, and unable to recognize that they have a problem (Dale & Smith, 2013). Addiction can be difficult to treat as it often involves a cycle of remission and relapse. Since drug use alters the mind, it can often be difficult to reason with the individual and can cause further behavioral issues. Those who suffer from addiction often experience a wide range of emotions and that can also be a challenge to work with. Being able to understand and work through these emotions can help a social worker to offer the correct resources to help the individual. Using the compulsion and self-control theories can help shed some insight when working with addictive populations. This perspective suggests that individuals who make decisions based on their moods and have a difficult time controlling these moods are at a higher risk of addiction (Dale & Smith, 2013). By utilizing this perspective a social worker can help to regulate the moods of the individual and help find healthy alternatives to cope with these emotions.
Dale, O., & Smith, R. (2013). Human behavior and social environment: Social systems theory. Pearson. ISBN-13: 9780205036486