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The editorial team warmly welcome Mrs. Professor Lena Dominelli, and Mr. Professor Malcolm Payne, two prominent internationally social work personalities who have kindly accepted to be part of our journal’s International Advisory Board starting with issue no. 1/2010.
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Homepage > Archive > Numar: 3 > The Lived Experience of Five Clients in Recovery from Drug Addiction

 The Lived Experience of Five Clients in Recovery from Drug Addiction

  • Oana Rotărescu (Health Service Executive HSE, The Mews, 224 North Circular Road, Dublin 7, Ireland, E-mail:
  • Emma Sleath (School of Psychological, Social and Behavioural Sciences, Coventry University, Priory Street, Coventry, CV1 5FB, UK)

The present study explores the lived experience of recovery from drug addiction of a sample of five participants involved with a community-based drug rehabilitation centre from Dublin inner-city. Interpretative phenomenological analysis (IPA) has been employed to gain the participants perspectives on what was successful regarding their recovery from drug addiction. Transcripts were analysed using IPA method and analysis revealed a number of themes. The main themes are: the context and the background of addiction, recovery as a process of gradual development of awareness and knowledge around requirements to obtain and maintain abstinence, the link between addiction and forensic history, the turning point as a very negative or a string of very negative experiences, triggers for relapse as negative external and internal factors, drug treatment as a continuum of care, recovery as learning how to talk, communicate and trust people again, recovery as group work and support, recovery as total abstinence and therapeutic alliance as a necessary ingredient of a successful recovery. These findings imply that recovery is a complex, multi-episodic process which requires multiple interventions appropriate for each particular stage of recovery. Individual, familial and community factors need to be addressed if a successful recovery is desired. Group work and therapeutic alliance are of crucial importance. Implications for practice and limitations of the present study are discussed.

Keywords: Drug interventions, treatment, drug related offending, interpretative phenomenological analysis, personal experiences