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What Is SMART Recovery

Knowing What Smart Is


A well-recognized alternative to twelve-step groups like those of AA is SMART. SMART tackles other problems issues associated with addictions like mental illnesses and feelings of unhappiness.

SMART, or Self-Management and Recovery Training, is a support program aimed at people who suffer from addictions and conduct disorders. It trains people to suppress their dependence behaviour by making them focus on subjacent thoughts and feelings.

Some of the skills that people learn in SMART are useful in helping them to deal with cravings in the long term.


New methods on emerging scientific evidence to help with addiction recovery are continuously updated by SMART.


SMART is regularly updated to provide strategies researchers find most efficient.

SMART has been recommended by the National Institute on Drug Abuse and the American Academy of Family Physicians as being one of the successful methods of beating dependency.


Smart And How It Works

As contrasted with 12-step programs that make people admit helplessness about their dependence, SMART is considered a self-empowering program. Well-trained voluntary servants help participants examine particular behaviours to find weak spots which need special attention. The patients then learn how to take mastery over those negative habits. SMART uses psychological therapy to train on how to control behaviour. The participants are required to learn these skills by following a simplified four-point program.



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The 4 Stages Of Smart

Each point of the 4-point program is described in detail in 'The SMART Recovery Handbook'. To help the recovering user remain clean, the handbook also contains tips and exercises that can be used.

These are not stages that are followed. They just need to adhere to all the steps and not necessarily required to follow in step form.

If you or your relative have tried 12-step programs in vain, SMART can be a good alternative. Contact us to help you identify a SMART facility near you call 0800 246 1509 .


  • Building And Maintaining Motivation
  • The most important point is that one must be convinced they want to attain sobriety forever.
  • To help in the decision making, participants can make a list of the pros and cons of using or staying clean.
  • Controlling Cravings
  • The second point studies the factors that trigger a craving.
  • Using methods that help refocus attention, patients are taught how to control the cravings.
  • This can also help them deal with some of the negative beliefs that cause them to use.
  • Controlling Mind, Emotions, And Actions
  • In point three, one is taught how to bring the mind, emotions, and actions under control to avoid yielding to cravings and falling back to drug abuse.
  • The participants study self-acceptance and learn to manage unpleasant feelings such as depression.
  • Living A Good Life
  • Choosing to live without depending on drugs is a huge step in life.
  • It is crucial for a successful recovery that the person learns how to live a healthy and sober life.
  • At this point, the recovering user will need to make a note of the things that matter to them.
  • Participants are also given the education they need to plan about the future by setting realistic goals for themselves.

Comparison To The 12 Stage Plans

The SMART 4-Point and the 12-Step programs do share some similar approaches. In both cases, the recovering users try to overcome their addictions by getting past some challenges. The confidentiality of the members is also maintained in both the programs. The objectives have been realized in both of them.

The basic difference between SMART and 12-step programs is in how these program define addiction.

The people that are dependant on the drugs are not said to be "addicts" in the SMART program. This is because there is a lot of negativity associated with these title. The duration taken for recovering from the addiction is not long in the SMART technique. A participant can "graduate" from the recovery program at any stage and begin a new, sober life.

The 12-step program is not considered voluntarily by many people because they do not prefer to believe that they are powerless against their addiction or giving themselves away to a higher power. Participants of SMART are encouraged to approach the process of recovery by gaining control over their lives.

Both SMART and twelve-step programs provide help and support to people. People choose the program they feel will suit them best. In the words written in the SMART Recovery Handbook, "What works for one person in one situation may not work for another in the same situation."


Recovery Completion

Participants of SMART can graduate from recovery and this is a unique feature of this program. The chances of a person going back to the drugs is minimal when the are on the SMART program.

In the final stages of recovery participants will begin to experience overall self-control over their lives and will no longer feel tempted to use the drugs again, and this is a belief which is held by SMART.

They go back to a normal life where they don't have to use drugs.


Is Smart Suitable For You

SMART was designed to help every individual backing with an addiction of any type. The addiction to food and betting can also be suppressed by this technique. Smart is also used to treat underlying mental health problems such as depression.