What is A.A. (Alcoholics Anonymous)?
With alcoholics anonymous turning 84 years old this year and over 2 million participants involved in over 100,000 groups, this article is asking how well AA works. With conflicting reviews of some literature stating great success rates while others are more on the skeptical side, it is difficult to discern. After some review it was found that alcoholic anonymous can help certain people beat alcoholism, but evidence is enormous.
AA began in Akron, Ohio in the year of 1935 by two men Bill Wilson, a businessman, and Bob smith, a doctor. The two of them got together and wrote “The Big Book” that contains the widely known 12-steps. It involves participants to meet to aid each one in staying alcohol-free. They are open to all trying to abstain from alcohol and doesn’t cost to join.
When a study took a group of 900 alcoholics and divided them into 3 groups, one with AA and two without AA. All the groups went from around 20% to 80% of days without alcohol even a year after treatment. Which showed that AA treatment performed well on these subjects. More research shows that being in AA is more beneficial than doing it on your own. When a 16-year research study was done on alcoholics, those who went to a minimum of 27 weeks of AA group meetings the 1st year had a 67% alcohol free at the 16-year mark. While those who didn’t take part in AA only tallied 34%. Thus, illustrating that AA can cause long term benefits of no alcohol use as compared to not attending.
In conclusion AA can be helpful and even more effective when combined with professional treatment for those with a drinking problem. Like-minded people gathered together motivated with one goal of bettering their lives by cutting out alcohol. AA on its own is shown to be beneficial, it’s free, and you are surrounded by peers that can help advise you on. So, it is definitely worth a second thought when one is serious about sobriety.