PSYCHOLOGICAL INTERVENTIONS- BEHAVIOURAL THERAPY

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  • PSYCHOLOGICAL INTERVENTIONS
    • AO1- BEHAVIOURAL THERAPY
      • The TOKON ECONOMY approach to addiction therapy uses OPERANT CONDITIONING principles of POSITIVE REINFORCEMENT & SHAPING.
      • Eg, The goal is to be drug-free for dependant users, therefore longer & longer abstinences are rewarded
      • Abstinence is positively reinforced with tokens that are saved in exchange for 'treats'.
      • Token economies are implemented in institutions  or operated from outreach centres.
    • AO2
      • RESEARCHSUPPORT FOR THE EFFECTIVENESS OF TOKEN ECONOMY
        • SINDELAR ET AL found treatment success using a token economy programme with 120 cocaine abusers on a 12 week programme.
          • When pay outs were bigger the pp's provided a higher percentage of drug free urine samples, stayed clean for longer & were more likely to complete the programme.
            • Even though the prizes were bigger, the overall cost-effectiveness was better.
              • However, one problem with token economies is that they may lead to a different kind of dependency. Eg, drug users may expect to be rewarded simply for staying drug free, which would make coping without the system difficult. Therefore the addict may relapse when treatment stops.
      • BEHAVIOURAL INTERVENTIONS DONT ADDRESS THE UNDERLYING PROBLEM
        • Research has shown that the effectiveness of Behavioural therapies, based on operant conditioning, are successful in reducing substance abuse.
          • However, such an approach is less likely to be suitable for gambling addiction as the token economy itself, is a lottery type programme.
            • In addition to this, such interventions do nothing to address the problem that led to the addiction in the first place. This means that although specific addictive behaviour might be reduced, theres a possibility that the person may simply engage in a different addictive behaviour instead.
              • Eg, a drug addict may turn to alcohol, however in met cases new addictions tend to be subtle, including compulsive spending or even developing dependant relationships. Therefore, one addiction is simply being substituted for another.

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