Marital and family therapy

Indian J Psychiatry. 2018 Feb;60(Suppl 4):S501-S505. doi: 10.4103/psychiatry.IndianJPsychiatry_19_18.

Abstract

Substance abuse is a family disease that adversely impacts both the user and the user's family. The family can act as a risk factor for the development of substance abuse among children and adults. The family can also be involved in therapy to either help the recovery process or prevent substance abuse. Marital and family therapy have been found to be effective in reducing the severity of substance use, lowering marital and family conflict, improving family communication and cohesion as well as effective parenting practices. Behavioural Couples Therapy has been found to have good empirical support for bringing about the desired changes in both substance abuse and marital relationship. While targeting entire families, the most common evidenced based family interventions are Brief Strategic Family Therapy, Multidimensional Family Therapy, Family Behaviour Therapy, Functional Family Therapy and Community Reinforcement Programme. Marital and family therapy have to be sensitive to gender and culture. Effective use of marital and family therapy requires adequate training to equip practitioners in adequately treating not only substance use disorders and family pathology, but also in treating co-morbid mental health conditions.

Keywords: Adolescence; Family therapy; Marital therapy; Prevention; Substance abuse.

Publication types

  • Review