After struggling with drug addiction, walking the road to recovery often leads to hurdles and obstacles that many people do not expect. Without guidance or support, it may seem nearly impossible to continue on the path and not relapse. Thankfully, there are several resources that can help people struggling with addiction, like Narcotics Anonymous (NA).
If you or a loved one struggle with substance abuse or addiction, finding a 12-step treatment program in a professional center or support group can help. At Northpoint Recovery, we know how powerful a 12-step treatment program can be in assisting you in freeing yourself from the grips of addiction. Call 208.486.0130 today to speak with one of our recovery specialists and take the first step toward a sober future.
The History of Narcotics Anonymous
Narcotics Anonymous is a 12-step program that was founded in 1953. The organization has meetings worldwide and is open to anyone who struggles with addiction.
The program was modeled after Alcoholics Anonymous (AA), which was founded in 1935 by Bill Wilson and Dr. Bob Smith. The two men developed the 12 steps to help people recover from alcoholism.
The Purpose of the 12 Steps
The 12 steps of Narcotics Anonymous work to help people recovering from addiction achieve long-term sobriety. The steps are meant to be taken sequentially, and each one builds on the last.
The 12 steps are:
- We admitted we were powerless over our addiction and that our lives had become unmanageable.
- We came to believe that a power greater than ourselves could restore us to sanity.
- We made a decision to turn our will and our lives over to the care of God as we understood Him.
- We made a searching and fearless moral inventory of ourselves.
- We admitted to God, to ourselves, and to another human being the exact nature of our wrongs.
- We were entirely ready to have God remove all these defects of character.
- We humbly asked Him to remove our shortcomings.
- We made a list of all persons we had harmed, and became willing to make amends to them all.
- We made direct amends to such people wherever possible, except when to do so would injure them or others.
- We continued to take personal inventory and, when we were wrong, promptly admitted it.
- We sought through prayer and meditation to improve our conscious contact with God as we understood Him, praying only for knowledge of His will for us and the power to carry that out.
- Having had a spiritual awakening as the result of these steps, we tried to carry this message to addicts and to practice these principles in all our affairs.
Are the 12 Steps Effective?
The 12 steps of Narcotics Anonymous have been proven to be an effective addiction treatment. In a study of 813 people attending NA meetings, researchers found that the longer people stayed in the program, the more likely they were to stay sober.
The study also found that people who completed all 12 steps were more likely to maintain their sobriety than those who did not.
What Does Science Say About the 12 Steps?
The 12 steps of Narcotics Anonymous are based on the principles of Alcoholics Anonymous, which have been proven to be effective in treating addiction.
A review of 38 studies on AA found that the program is effective in treating alcoholism and that it can help people maintain their sobriety. The review also found that AA is more effective when people are actively involved in the program and when they have a sponsor.
Warning Signs of Addiction
If you or someone you know is struggling with addiction, there are some warning signs to look out for:
- Changes in behavior, such as acting withdrawn, moody, or irritable
- Changes in appearance, such as neglecting personal hygiene or wearing dirty clothes
- Changes in sleep patterns, such as sleeping more or less than usual
- Changes in eating habits, such as eating more or less than usual
- Changes in school or work performance, such as getting lower grades or missing days of work
- Use of drugs or alcohol, even if it is just once
Finding Community in NA
Narcotics Anonymous is a community of people committed to helping each other recover from addiction. NA meetings provide a safe and supportive environment for people to share their experiences and learn from others going through the same thing.
If you or someone you know is struggling with addiction, consider finding a local NA meeting. You can find a meeting near you by visiting the Narcotics Anonymous website.
Begin Your Journey at Northpoint Recovery
Finding an NA meeting can change your life. If you want an evidence-based 12-step process with the support of medical professionals, we can help. At Northpoint Recovery, we know how important it is for you to learn sobriety skills so you can succeed in long-term recovery. Call 208.486.0130 today to get started.