Social skills training for drug users under treatment: a pilot study with follow-up


Psicol. Reflex. Crit.




Abstract Drug abuse is associated with loss of social skills by drug users. The literature review revealed a strong need for social skills training as a strategy to assist in psychosocial rehabilitation. However, few studies to date have evaluated the results of social skills training in therapeutic communities (type of treatment often used for drug users). Therefore, the aim of the present study is to describe the results of a pilot study regarding the social skills training of drug users under treatment. This is a quasi-experimental pilot study, with pre- and post-tests and followup. The following assessment instruments were used for data collection: Questionnaire on Sociodemographic Data and Drug Abuse; Multidimensional Scale of Social Expression; Depression, Anxiety and Stress Scale, and The World Health Organization Quality of Life Assessment. The social skills training led to a significant increase in the skills of making refusals and expressing negative affect, quality of life (psychological domain), and a significant decrease in depressive symptoms and quality of life (environment domain). The high rate of intervention adherence (81.25%; n = 13) is indicative of the benefits from therapeutic community treatment and justifies the need for further empirical research, especially in terms of protocol development.

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