Certified Peer Support Services

When you’re healing from addiction, it is important to strengthen your support network and to accept help, strength, and kindness from your community.  Although friends and family can definitely help you on your journey, they might not be able to truly empathize with or understand your struggles.

That’s where peer support services come in. By seeking certified peer support services, you’ll receive help from people who truly understand your experience— because they’ve gone through it, too. Individuals who offer peer support can help you through the ups and downs of addiction recovery, by sharing wisdom and boosting you up on your path to wellness and recovery.

What is a Certified Peer Support Specialist, and How Does it Help?

A peer support specialist has the lived experience of mental health or substance abuse disorders. Since they’ve recovered from addiction themselves, they’re able to offer hope and guidance in a judgment-free environment.

Not only do peer support specialists share their wisdom and stories, but they can also help you out with tools and resources they discovered on their own journey towards recovery. Using these tools, peer support specialists can educate and empower you to make changes in your life. Together, you can hone in on your dreams and goals for a future of wellness.

To become certified, peer support specialists have to demonstrate certain core competencies. Using their training, they work within a professional framework that emphasizes recovery, understands trauma, and is based on a respectful and empathetic mutual relationship. When you’re recovering from substance addiction, that empathy, respect, and sense of connection can give you strength when you need it most.

The Strong Evidence for Peer Support

Studies have repeatedly shown the powerful impact of peer support. For example, the Recovery Association Project of Portland (RAP), which offers peer support services in the local community, found encouraging results when following up with participants 6 months after the program.  According to a survey, 85% of the participants had abstained from alcohol and drugs during the previous 30-day period.

According to an extensive literature review from the Assessing the Evidence psychiatric series, numerous studies that investigated peer support “demonstrated reduced relapse rates, increased treatment retention, improved relationships with treatment providers and social supports, and increased satisfaction with the overall treatment experience.”

The Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) notes that peer support is a powerful tool that helps those in recovery to feel accepted and validated. Alongside professional treatment, SAMHSA suggests that peer support may:

  • Boost feelings of empowerment
  • Increase confidence
  • Offer hope and inspiration
  • Boost social function
  • Reduce hospitalizations and criminal justice involvement
  • Reduce substance abuse and relapse

Examples of Certified Peer Support Programs

Recovery takes different forms, and each individual needs a peer support program catered to their needs. You may have heard of some of the more well-known peer recovery groups:

  • AA, or Alcoholics Anonymous, is one of the largest peer support groups in the world. With an estimated 2 million people in programs worldwide, AA uses a 12-step program to help people achieve sobriety from alcohol.
  • Narcotics Anonymous (NA) provides valuable support for those in recovery from addiction to drugs. In fact, a questionnaire gauging the effectiveness of NA for participants found that 92% had improved their family connections, while 75% had seen improvement in their employment prospects.
  • Standing for Self Management and Recovery Training, SMART Recovery is a global program that offers mutual support groups for a variety of addictions, including gambling, overeating, alcohol, and drugs.

Peer support can exist alongside your current treatment plan.

Certified Peer Support in Lexington

For many people in recovery from substance abuse disorder, peer support offers the chance to connect on a deep level, carve a path towards wellbeing, and achieve healing in your life. If you’re looking for peer support services in Lexington, 2nd Chance Clinic can help. Our clinic focuses on providing compassionate and attentive help for those with addiction to opioids or alcohol. To learn more, please contact us today

Commonly Abused Opiates:

  • Percocet​
  • Hydrocodone​
  • Oxycodone​
  • Morphine​
  • Codeine​
  • Fentanyl​
  • Heroin​​