Clinical Treatment of Substance Abusers: Past, Present and Future

Shulamith Lala Ashenberg Straussner

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


With an estimated 9 % of the population in the United States having a substance use disorder, it is a rare social worker that has not encountered a substance abuser or a family member of one in his or her clinical practice. This article provides a brief history of social workers' role in the treatment of substance abusing clients, an overview of the current, evidence-based treatment approaches and some of the issues that will be impacting this field in the future. A case study is used to illustrate some of the dynamics of substance abusing individuals, the impact on the family and effective treatment approaches.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)127-133
Number of pages7
JournalClinical Social Work Journal
Issue number2
StatePublished - Jun 2012


  • Case study
  • Drug policy issues
  • Evidence-based practices in addictions
  • Social work interventions
  • Substance use disorders
  • Treatment approaches

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Health(social science)
  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health


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