Behavioral Treatment of Outpatient Problem Drinkers
For years the field of alcoholism has been influenced by traditional concepts of alcohol dependence (Pattison, Sobell, & Sobell, 1977). Consequently, treatment interventions have focused primarily on alcohol abusers who are physically dependent on alcohol (gamma alcoholics). Most treatment has also been of an inpatient or residential nature and has focused exclusively on abstinence, rarely addressing other areas of life or health functioning. In the last decade, however, epidemiologic studies have suggested that chronic alcoholics represent only a small proportion of those who have serious drinking problems, and that the number of individuals whose drinking behavior is problematic and high risk, but who are not physically addicted, is quite large (Cahalan & Room, 1974).
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