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The social model or rehabilitation primarily provides supportive therapy, and does not use medication to treat addiction. In theory, a social model says that addiction is a disease brought about by psychological and social ills, and that time spent in a peaceful, encouraging environment can help to break addictive patterns.
Many social-model programs include significant "experience" components, such as performing jobs at the substance abuse center, exercise, and group outings. Through these experiences the addict builds a sense of personal competence that can help sustain a new, drug-free life. At the same time, therapy focuses on identifying and expressing feelings that may have fed into past drug use.
Drug treatment centers based on the social model also may include elements of spiritual counseling or motivational therapy, and encourages long-term participation in therapy and self-help or 12-step groups.