Emerging Adults, Mutual-Help Organizations, and Addiction Recovery: What Does the Science Tell Us?

Citation:

Bergman, B. G., Kelly, J. F., Fallah-Sohy, N., & Makhani, S. (2018). Emerging Adults, Mutual-Help Organizations, and Addiction Recovery: What Does the Science Tell Us? In D. C. Smith (Ed.), Emerging Adults and Substance Use Disorder Treatment: Developmental Considerations and Innovative Approaches (pp. 167-195) . Oxford University Press.

Abstract:

A body of literature has shown that free, widely available mutual-help organizations (MHOs), such as Alcoholics Anonymous (AA), offer cost-efficient community-based sources of recovery support for individuals with substance use disorder (SUD). Emerging adults (18–29 years old) are a prevalent group of individuals in the SUD treatment system who present unique challenges and typically have poorer outcomes than those of older adults (e.g., 30+ years). Given the need to identify low-cost strategies that can help destabilize the course of SUD for emerging adults, this chapter reviews the extent to which emerging adults participate in MHOs and the degree to which they benefit from participation in MHOs. The chapter also outlines the mechanisms through which MHO participation promotes better outcomes and the factors that influence emerging adults’ MHO participation and participation-related benefit. The chapter then highlights opportunities for timely but as-of-yet untapped targets for emerging adult recovery-related research, such as the intersection between MHO participation and opioid agonist treatment.

Last updated on 07/08/2019