What Is an Intervention?

An intervention is a thoroughly planned meeting that often acts as the initial step in treating an addiction. While interventions often target those abusing drugs, they are also used for any type of addiction – such as one to gambling, sex, hoarding or alcohol. Interventions are often organized by concerned family members who invite friends, colleagues and other people the addict respects to participate in the intervention. An intervention provides a venue for the attendees to share their experiences with the addict in the hopes of spurring him or her to seek treatment.

Interventions present the addict with a clear, concise picture of the horrible effects of their addiction. Hopefully, the addict accepts that their addiction not only affects them, but also damages the lives of the people they love.  If, during the intervention, the addict decides to seek treatment, the interventionist offers a prearranged treatment option. If, however, the addict refuses to seek treatment, an intervention is still able to provide information and coping strategies to all of the people negatively affected by the addiction.

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