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Cognitive Retraining

One of the key elements of successful treatments at Sprout Health Group is the use of cognitive retraining in order to equip our clients with the much-needed competencies they will need to function optimally in their respective neighborhoods.

shutterstock_216378502While some treatment centers consider completion of their treatment programs as major indicators of success, at Sprout we believe that the true measure of treatment success can only be ascertained many years after completion of the treatment.

Our clients who have remained sober and addiction-free for many years long after the completion of their treatment programs are living testament to the effectiveness of the Sprout way of treatments.

Goal of Cognitive Retraining

When an individual is mentally ill or has substance addiction issues his brain’s natural chemistry is altered. This results in physiologic problems as well as cognitive impairments. He may have problems in maintaining focus and concentration as well as problems in processing and recalling certain information.

Problem-solving skills, logical and critical thinking skills, decision-making skills, and executive skills can all be affected. These can significantly impact the individual’s life – his work, his social relationships, and even his own self.

In cognitive retraining, our goal is to enable the individual to regain full control of his cognitive processes in order for him to find more meaning in his new life. He will be able to easily identify potential addiction triggers and institute measures which he knows will help him stay sober and addiction-free.

While some of these triggers may come from the very same social relationships that he has in the past, he is now better equipped with the correct attitude and mindset on how to manage these appropriately. In effect, cognitive retraining enables individuals to successfully reintegrate into their respective communities – able to continue studying, seek better employment, continue with healthier social relationships, live a more civic-oriented life, and become responsible members of society.

How does it Work?

shutterstock_298818524Cognitive retraining works by conditioning the mind to elicit a particular response or skill set for different types of situations. The individual is first trained to use a particular new skill including the situations or circumstances upon which this skill can be used.

Over the course of the treatment program, the individual develops mastery of the skill and progresses to substantially more complex skill set. In each skill progression, the aim is to develop the newly-learned cognitive skill into an automatic response for the individual.

This means that if presented with a situation, the individual no longer has to scurry for answers on what he needs to do because the reaction is already instant, automatic.

Depending on the cognitive function that needs to be retrained, it can take a few days up to a few months. However, what is important, as in any other treatment modality, is the level of motivation and willingness of the individual to undergo cognitive retraining.

This is very important because task non-accomplishment can prove to be a major source of disappointment especially in the early stages of the treatment. Individuals who are easily discouraged will often have problems willing themselves to cognitively retrain.

Sprout cognitive retraining specialists work closely with individuals to develop therapeutic goals that are both achievable but, at the same time, provide some degree of challenge to be meaningful.

Cognitive Functions Retrained

Depending on the initial cognitive testing of the individual, the cognitive retraining methodologies will be designed primarily to help individuals regain optimum control of their diminished cognitive functions. While not exclusive, these can include the following:

  • Improvement of attention span, multi-tasking abilities, and clarity of focus and concentration;
  • Enhancement of memory processing, retention, and recall through mnemonics and other useful methods;
  • Retraining of analytical abilities as well as organizational skills;
  • Improvement in the manner of organizing and processing information in order to support rational and logical thinking and reasoning;
  • Regain ability to solve simple or complex problems in a more effective way;
  • Retraining of ability to make well-thought decisions, avoiding drastic actions, and without appearing indecisive; and
  • Reestablishment of control over discipline, restraint, and monitoring of one’s self.

At Sprout Health Group, we firmly dedicate our cognitive retraining program to help individuals find better meaning in their lives after their treatment. The greatest success for us is when clients return not as rehabilitees again but as living examples of how successful our treatment programs are.


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