Determine Strategies

Plan Your Intervention StrategyPlan Your Intervention Approach

According to a study published in the American Journal of Drug and Alcohol Abuse, 90 to 95 percent of people who abuse alcohol or drugs do not enter a treatment program to address the problem. An intervention allows the family to break the trend and push their loved one into getting needed help. All interventions aren’t created equal, however. There are quite a few intervention types available, and types that work for one person may not work for another. An interventionist can talk at length with the family and determine the best method to use to hold the intervention.

Most interventions have a few basic traits in common:

  • The family outlines specific instances where the addiction caused distress or harm.
  • The family uses supportive and loving statements, avoiding words of blame or hostility.
  • The interventionist remains in control and steps in if the family or the addict begins to lose control.
  • The addict is encouraged to enter treatment at the end of the intervention.

There are specific components of addiction interventions the families can choose to include or exclude. For example, some interventions outline specific negative consequences the addict will face if he or she won’t get help. Some families believe these limits are too harsh and will drive the addict back to drug or alcohol use, and they exclude this component. Some interventions allow the addict to participate in all phases of the discussion, including planning stages, so the addict isn’t surprised by the intervention or the solutions in any way. Again, some families don’t believe this will work for their loved one and they exclude this component.

During the planning stages, families should be upfront with their interventionists about the methods they’d like to use. They should speak up if they feel an idea simply will not work. They know the addict better than anyone else, and this knowledge can help them craft an intervention that’s truly effective.

Step 3: Select a Site for Your Intervention