Washington DC, Aug. 7 : Technological advancements might have increased the growth of online support groups to curb substance abuse on sites like Facebook but a recent study has revealed that attending traditional face-to-face meetings are more effective for people who try to maintain sobriety.
Author Donald S. Grant said that one of the most hotly debated media issues today is whether the rapidly increased use of social networking might be supplanting face-to-face-interactions and what the social consequences might prove for us as a culture.
He added that their study is focused on better understanding the strengths and weaknesses of online versus face-to-face sobriety support.
While the results showed that participants in general continued to prefer fact-to-face meetings, there was an increase in online use that corresponded with a moderate decrease in meeting attendance.
Grant called the research important because although the data do not indicate a significant shift from meetings to online support groups yet, they do suggest that a move in that direction is happening and it is important to understand what that can mean for outcomes of individuals seeking help.
Grant said that with more and more people engaging in online sobriety support, the recovering community and professionals alike wonder what impact these modern platforms could have on both the future of Alcoholics Anonymous and its membership.
He added that when comparing the short amount of time online sobriety support has even been accessible to the number of those participants currently engaging with it, the likelihood that its popularity will only grow seems probable.
The research was presented at the American Psychological Association’s 123rd Annual Convention. (ANI)