therapeutic methods in detail

Trauma informed care

Being a trauma informed organization means our staff realizes the widespread impact of trauma and the potential paths for healing. Odyssey staff recognizes the signs and symptoms of trauma and responds by fully integrating knowledge about trauma into policies, procedures, practices, and settings.

Trauma informed care is known to help decrease psychiatric symptoms, decrease substance use, increase in housing stability, and improvement in daily functioning. People also show a reduced need for crisis services (e.g. detox) and are more likely to engage in treatment services.

Cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT)

Cognitive behavioral therapy anticipates likely problems and increases patients’ self-control by helping them develop strong coping strategies. Specific techniques include exploring the positive and negative consequences of continued drug use, self-monitoring to recognize cravings early and identify situations that might put one at risk for use, and developing strategies for coping with cravings and avoiding those high-risk situations. CBT also helps people develop skills for living in harmony with the community and engaging in behaviors that contribute to positive outcomes in society. CBT has been proven to show improvement in social skills, problem-solving, critical reasoning, and moral reasoning.

Medication assisted treatment (MAT)

Odyssey House uses medication assisted treatment to help individuals detox and reduce drug cravings. Individuals can utilize common interventions such as Methadone, Suboxone, Naltrexone, Buprenorphine, and Vivitrol while in Odyssey House programming. Medication Assisted Treatment increases abstinence from substances, reduces drug craving, and increases treatment engagement and retention.

Moral Reconation Therapy (MRT)

MRT is a cognitive-behavioral approach combines multiple efforts to address ego, social, moral, and positive behavioral growth. Moral Reconation Therapy focuses on seven basic treatment issues: the confrontation of negative beliefs, attitudes, and behaviors; assessment of current relationships; reinforcement of positive behavior and habits; positive identity formation; enhancement of self-concept; decrease in hedonism and development of frustration tolerance; and development of higher stages of moral reasoning. MRT is shown to improve personality functioning and reduce the likelihood of relapse.

Dialectical Behavior Therapy (DBT)

DBT is a cognitive-behavioral treatment approach with two main approaches. The first approach is a behavioral, problem-solving focus with acceptance-based strategies. The second approach in DBT is to balance behavioral change, problem-solving, and emotional regulation with validation, mindfulness, and acceptance. Dialectical Behavior Therapy has shown reductions in suicide attempts, non-suicidal self-injuries, drug use, and symptoms of eating disorders; and improvements in psychosocial adjustment and retention in treatment.

Motivational Interviewing (MI)

MI focuses on behavioral change by helping clients explore and resolve ambivalence. Motivational Interviewing applies to a wide range of problem behaviors related to alcohol and substance abuse as well as helping improve physical health, staying in treatment and mental health. MI is shown to decrease alcohol use, drug use, alcohol-related injuries, drinking and driving; and improves retention in treatment and recognition of the problems associated with continued substance use.

Rational Emotive Behavioral Therapy (rebt)

REBT provides strategies to help clients learn to control chaotic emotions. Rational Emotive Behavioral Therapy is shown to improve emotional regulation, decrease problematic behavior, decrease emotional disturbance, and prevent relapse.

Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing (EMDR)

EMDR is a one-on-one form of therapy that is designed to reduce stress, anxiety, and depression symptoms associated with posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD). Through attention exercises that are built to disrupt the stored memory of the trauma and rewrite the memory, so it is not as stressful. EMDR is shown to reduce PTSD, anxiety, and depression symptoms and improve overall mental health functioning.

Trauma Recovery and Empowerment Model (TREM)

TREM is a mix of cognitive restructuring, psychoeducation, and skill building techniques. The gender-specific group provides coping skills and social support to address both short-term and long-term consequences of trauma, depression, and substance abuse. TREM has been shown to reduce problems related to substance use, psychological problems, trauma symptoms, high-risk behaviors, and hospitalizations. TREM also shows improvements in recovery skills and social functioning.

seeking safety

Seeking Safety is a ‘present-focused’ coping skill model for clients with a history of trauma and substance abuse. Seeking safety improves symptoms of PTSD, employment, and perception of support. Seeking Safety is also shown to reduce psychological distress and drug use.

relapse prevention therapy (RPT)

RPT is a behavioral self-control program that teaches individuals with substance addiction how to anticipate and cope with the potential for relapse. Coping skills training includes both cognitive and behavioral techniques. Cognitive techniques provide clients a way to reframe the negative habit as a learning experience with errors and setbacks expected as mastery develops. RPT is shown to decrease substance use and smoking, with increases in the ability to cope and improve healthy relationships.

Risk-Needs-Responsivity Model (RNR)

RNR focuses on delivering services in a way that increases the ability for people struggling with addiction to receive the intervention. RNR shows improvements in service design and delivery, patient assessment, attendance, engagement, rehabilitation, ability to understand interventions, program completion, negative behaviors, and relapse.


Psycho educational Multifamily Groups focus on teaching families and loved ones about mental illness, developing coping skills, solving problems, creating social supports, and developing an alliance with their loved ones. Psycho educational Multifamily Groups show positive outcomes in employment, family relationships, mental health, treatment engagement, and addiction recovery.

case management

Case management supports an individual as (s)he moves through the program and reinforces treatment goals. Case managers, often in recovery themselves, connect clients to community resources and provides additional moral support. Case managers help improve people's ability to find employment, secure housing, and apply for any other benefits for which they are eligible.

medical and dental care

People with a drug or alcohol addiction often neglect their health and have been exposed to more health risks than the average person. It is critical to treat medical and dental conditions and integrate these healthy behaviors into long term recovery. Providing health and dental care shows improvement in general health, reduced use of the emergency department, improvements in self-esteem, employment, housing, and treatment engagement. Learn more about our recovery friendly Medical Clinic.

sober housing

People new to recovery should ease back into the community when leaving treatment. Transitional sober housing is provided to clients moving out of residential care or who are currently in outpatient services. Housing is low-cost, maintains a sober environment with a level of peer supervision and support for recovery. Sober housing is shown to help with longer periods of abstinence and long term stable housing. Learn about our Sober Housing program.

employment preparation

Employment serves several purposes in addition to providing a source of income. Working creates self-esteem, provides the opportunity for socialization, creates accountability, and is an essential step toward being a healthy citizen. Odyssey’s vocational training and employment preparation are shown to increase stable employment during and post treatment, decrease drug use, and reduce relapse.

financial literacy

Effective money management is an important component of healthy living. Individuals who struggle with money are more likely to fall for payday loans and high-interest credit cards. Financial literacy has demonstrated improvements in money management, savings, debt management, housing, and increased treatment engagement.


Education is a building block for self-esteem and employability which is critical for sobriety. Research has shown that treatment outcomes improve when combined with education programs.  Education includes assessment to identify and remedy educational deficits and uncover special needs, such as dyslexia, ADHD, or other learning problems.