How Does the Matrix Model Work?

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The Matrix Model is a therapeutic treatment option that is often used for individuals who are addicted to stimulants. The program provides “a framework for engaging stimulant… abusers in treatment and helping them achieve abstinence” (National Institute on Drug Abuse). If you think this treatment option may be right for you, read more to find out how the Matrix Model works.

The Main Factors of the Matrix Model

There are several important aspects of the Matrix Model that work together to help the individual stop abusing dangerous, stimulant drugs and begin a safe, stable recovery.

  • The therapist creates a positive relationship with the patient.
  • Communication between patient and therapist must not become parental or confrontational.
  • The therapist promotes the individual’s self-esteem and self-worth, helping them feel more positively toward themselves as well as toward the therapist.
  • The patient and therapist utilize treatment manuals that contain worksheets for both.
  • Patients are “monitored for drug use through urine testing” so the therapist is aware of any relapses.
  • The treatment itself utilizes other evidence-based approaches used in therapeutic settings and includes elements of these treatments as well.

The other treatments used in the Matrix Model program can include drug education, family therapy, group therapy, relapse prevention, 12-step programs, and early recovery skills groups. These can be used at different times and at different degrees. This is important, as these options have been proven to be very helpful to a large population of individuals, and Matrix Model patients should also be offered the opportunity to benefit from these treatments.

In addition, one of the most important parts of the practice is that the therapist creates a positive relationship with the patient that stays professional but encouraging. This will often keep the individual in treatment, as they will feel comfortable and at ease with their therapist and want to stay in their care. Usually, this treatment lasts around 16 weeks, and while it can be utilized in many different types of rehab programs, it is most often part of intensive outpatient programs.

Is the Matrix Model a Successful Option?

“A number of studies have demonstrated that participants treated using the Matrix Model show statistically significant reductions in drug and alcohol use, improvements in psychological indicators, and reduced risky sexual behaviors associated with HIV transmission.” While the program is best utilized as a treatment for stimulant addiction, many individuals have found it to be very successful and for its unique brand of encouraging support and structure to be extremely beneficial.

The use of worksheets, therapeutic interactions, group and individualized counseling, and several other factors help make the Matrix Model a well-rounded treatment option for individuals addicted to stimulants. And especially because, “at this time, there are no medications that are FDA-approved for treating stimulant addiction” according to the National Institute on Drug Abuse, individuals seeking treatment for this issue need an option that is balanced and varied.