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Theory-based processes that promote the remission of substance use disorders.

Moos RH. Theory-based processes that promote the remission of substance use disorders. Clinical Psychology Review. 2007 Jun 1; 27(5):537-51.

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Four related theories about the personal and social resources that shield individuals from developing substance use disorders and foster the process of remission from these disorders are described. These theories are social control theory, behavioral economics and behavioral choice theory, social learning theory, and stress and coping theory. Next, the social processes specified by these theories are highlighted, including the provision of support, goal direction, and monitoring; engagement in rewarding activities other than substance use, exposure to abstinence-oriented norms and models, and attempts to build self-efficacy and coping skills. Then, a review of the literature considers evidence about the association between the personal and social resources specified by the four theories and remission from substance use disorders. The discussion highlights several issues that need to be addressed to enhance our understanding of the protective resources involved in stable remission, such as how to develop integrated measures of the key resources and specify their associations with substance use outcomes, the extent to which the resources amplify or compensate for the influence of treatment, and how treatment and continuing care can be tailored to strengthen the protective resources that promote remission.

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