Group Therapy - Detox Plus Rehab Clinics UK

therapy group adults meeting

What is Group Therapy?

A common form of ongoing treatment in addiction recovery, group therapy is a meeting to express thoughts, struggles and feelings in a safe space. It is usually a small group of individuals, typically 5 to 15 people, gather regularly with a trained therapist to discuss their challenges, share their experiences, and support one another.

Being in a group allows participants to connect with others going through similar struggles, creating a sense of unity and empathy. Group therapy is beneficial for those who may feel isolated or lonely in their difficulties, as it offers a safe space to explore emotions, gain new perspectives, and develop coping mechanisms.

Through group therapy, individuals can enhance their social skills, increase self-awareness, and receive constructive feedback in a nurturing setting. This type of treatment is particularly effective in addressing issues like anxiety, depression, addiction, trauma, and relationship difficulties.

In general, group therapy provides individuals with a unique opportunity to learn various viewpoints, gain knowledge from others, and create a feeling of connection and inclusion.

Key points of group therapy

  • Group therapy involves small groups meeting with a therapist to discuss problems, share experiences, and provide support.
  • Group sessions facilitate sharing, learning, and gaining perspective on personal struggles through storytelling and discussion.
  • Group therapy is cheaper than individual therapy because the cost is divided among participants.

What are the Different Types of Group Therapy?

Different types of group therapy are categorised according to the specific mental health problem being targeted and the therapeutic approach being employed. Some common forms of group therapy include:

Cognitive-behavioural group therapy: This type of therapy blends cognitive and behavioural methods to assist individuals in confronting and altering negative thought patterns and behaviours. In cognitive-behavioural group therapy, a skilled therapist guides individuals facing similar difficulties or obstacles. Sessions usually concentrate on recognising and disputing irrational or pessimistic beliefs, creating healthier coping mechanisms, and rehearsing new behaviours within a supportive group environment.

Interpersonal group therapy

In interpersonal group therapy, a small group of people gather to work on their interpersonal problems and enhance their connections with others. The sessions are typically guided by a trained therapist who leads discussions and activities focused on improving communication, managing emotions, and resolving conflicts.

In this therapy setting, participants can openly share their experiences, thoughts, and emotions in a safe and encouraging space. The group dynamic enables individuals to receive feedback and encouragement from their peers, gain fresh insights into their relationships, and benefit from the shared experiences of others.

Psychoeducational groups

Psychoeducational groups involve combining education and counselling in a group therapy setting to provide support and information to individuals with mental health issues. Participants learn about their condition, coping strategies, and ways to enhance their well-being.

Skill development groups

aim to help individuals develop the necessary tools to handle difficult situations and improve their well-being. This may involve learning communication skills, stress management techniques, problem-solving strategies, and coping mechanisms for managing challenging emotions.

Skill development groups can also be a cost-effective way to receive therapy, as group members often share costs.

Overall, skill development group therapy can be a valuable resource for individuals looking to improve their mental health and develop the skills they need to lead more fulfilling lives.

General support groups

General support groups involve gathering individuals who share their experiences, challenges, and achievements related to a common issue. These therapy sessions are usually facilitated by a trained therapist who guides the conversation and ensures everyone can speak and be listened to.

Participants can openly express their thoughts and emotions during these meetings in a safe and encouraging atmosphere. They also have the opportunity to receive advice, feedback, and support from others facing similar situations.

The topics discussed in general support groups can range from mental health issues like anxiety or depression to addiction recovery, grief, chronic illness, or relationship struggles.

These meetings aim to create a platform for people to share their experiences, gain insights, and learn from one another in dealing with their personal struggles.

In general, group therapy can support those needing emotional reinforcement, validation, and a sense of belonging during difficult times. It can aid in developing coping mechanisms, enhancing communication skills, building stronger relationships, and fostering resilience in challenging situations.

Groups may vary in size, consisting of three to four members, while group therapy sessions typically involve eight to 12 individuals (although larger groups are also possible). These groups usually meet once or twice weekly for one to two hours each session.

There are two types of group therapy sessions: open and closed. Open sessions welcome new members at any time, while closed sessions are exclusive to a set group of participants who have been invited to join.

What Happens in Group Therapy?

Group therapy sessions often involve various activities such as:

Group discussions: During group discussions, participants are urged to open up about their thoughts, emotions, and personal experiences to better understand their challenges and to learn from others. 

Group exercises: Therapists lead group exercises to enhance communication, teamwork, and problem-solving abilities within the group.

Role-playing: Role-playing is also commonly used in group therapy to help members practice new ways of communicating and coping in a secure and encouraging setting.

Psychoeducation: Counselors can offer guidance and materials on mental health subjects, methods for dealing with challenges, and communication skills to help group participants gain insight into their problems and find successful ways to deal with them.

Support and affirmation: Group therapy creates a comforting setting where people can receive reassurance, understanding, and motivation from others facing similar difficulties.

Is Group Therapy Good for Addiction?

All around the world, groups of people with addictions are meeting regularly. Why is it that meeting in groups is such a cornerstone of addiction treatment?

Group therapy was one of the first treatments to emerge and show it was effective. The AA (alcoholics anonymous) started up in the 1930s and spread across the world, with around 2 million members currently active. 

In modern times, support organisations such as AA, NA, SMART recovery and recovery cafes all find that group therapy is an effective and low-cost method of recovery from addiction.

What Makes Group Therapy Effective?

Peer Support in Addiction

Addiction can be deeply isolating. This worsens the cycle of addiction, and peer pressure can trigger relapse. Fellow group therapy participants can offer helpful tips, coping mechanisms, and highly beneficial feedback during the therapeutic journey.

Hearing about the successes and struggles of others can bring hope and motivation while sharing experiences can improve the overall effectiveness of group therapy sessions.

In general, peer support and encouragement in group therapy can establish a secure and nurturing atmosphere where individuals can delve into their thoughts and emotions, understand their actions, and develop healthier coping strategies for life’s hurdles. This feeling of camaraderie and mutual assistance can be a strong catalyst for healing and personal growth.

Role Modelling

Be a role model for others: Setting a positive example for others is crucial in group therapy. It helps the person being the role model and enhances the overall group dynamic. By demonstrating what is achievable and leading by example, a role model can assist in promoting development, recovery, and change for all group members.

Clean and Sober Socialising

Learn new social skills: Group therapy involves a trained therapist guiding a small group of individuals who share similar challenges or goals in discussions and activities to work through their issues. This type of therapy is beneficial for learning new social skills, as it allows participants to practice and enhance their skills in a supportive and structured setting.

Social modelling: Group therapy plays a crucial role in acquiring new social skills by allowing individuals to witness social modelling. By observing how others interact and communicate within a group therapy session, individuals can gain valuable insights into practical social skills. By emulating these behaviours, individuals can enhance their social skills and develop new strategies for engaging with others. Group therapy provides a valuable and real-life platform for improving social skills.

Aside from social modelling, group therapy allows individuals to get feedback and support from the therapist and their fellow group members. Individuals can receive helpful feedback on their social interactions and advice on enhancing their communication abilities by engaging in group discussions and activities. This feedback assists individuals in recognising areas for improvement and creating strategies to improve their social skills.


It’s affordable: Group therapy is a budget-friendly option compared to one-on-one therapy because the cost is divided among participants. Some therapists also provide discounted rates based on income, making group therapy more attainable for those with financial constraints.

Is Group Therapy Right for me?

Before deciding on group therapy for yourself or a loved one, consider a few key factors carefully.

The level of participation in group therapy can vary among individuals. Some may quickly share their thoughts and emotions with the group, while others may take longer to feel comfortable enough to open up. Factors such as past therapy experiences, comfort level with group members, and the topics being discussed can influence one’s willingness to share. 

Feelings of shame, fear of judgment, or lack of trust in the group or therapist can also hinder individuals from opening up. Each person’s willingness to share in group therapy is unique and can be influenced by various personal and environmental factors.

In group therapy, therapists aim to establish a safe and supportive atmosphere where members feel at ease sharing their thoughts and emotions. They might incorporate icebreakers, group activities, and other methods to foster trust and promote active participation. As group members grow more acquainted with one another and the group dynamics, they may feel more inclined to open up and express themselves.

online support group therapy

What Types of Group Therapy Exist?

You may need to try different groups: You may need to experiment with various group therapies to find the one that suits you best. Each program may have its own unique focus, structure, and approach, so exploring other options can help you determine what is most effective for your individual needs. 

The dynamics within a group and the facilitators can also affect how beneficial the therapy is for you, so trying out different groups can help you find a comfortable and supportive setting. If the first group therapy you attempt doesn’t feel quite right, don’t lose hope—continue to explore and try different groups until you discover one that resonates with you and assists you in making progress towards your objectives.

Group therapy is not crisis therapy: Group therapy differs from crisis therapy as it involves regular meetings of a small group of people to openly discuss their everyday experiences, emotions, and challenges in a safe and supportive setting. Unlike crisis intervention, group therapy is more geared towards long-term personal development and recovery than addressing immediate crises.

Finding a Therapy Group

Residential rehab, also called inpatient rehab, entails residing at a treatment centre for a designated duration to receive concentrated care and assistance for addiction or other health issues. This form of rehab usually offers round-the-clock medical monitoring, counselling, therapy sessions, and a well-organized daily schedule to aid individuals in concentrating solely on their recovery. Inpatient rehab is advised for those with severe addiction problems or concurrent mental health conditions that necessitate a heightened level of care.

When you reach out to our team, we will take the time to listen to your concerns and goals and work with you to find a group therapy option that aligns with your preferences. Whether you are looking for a group that focuses on a specific issue, such as anxiety or substance abuse, or you are seeking a more general support group, we can help you find the right fit.

Our website allows you to contact us by telephone, email, or online chat to schedule a consultation and begin your therapeutic journey. 

Our team provides compassionate and personalised care to help you achieve your mental health goals. 

Don’t hesitate to contact us today to take the first step towards a happier and healthier future.

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