A Look at the Evolution of the Self-Help Movement

Flora, Katerina ; Raftopoulos, Antonios ; Pontikes, Theodote (2010-11-15)


The self-help movement clearly introduced the significance of the role of responsibility and self-actualization into the health care sector. Narcotics Anonymous and Alcoholics Anonymous are among the most influential self-help groups worldwide. However, social scientists had not recognized the importance of self-help groups for many years. Today, there are several quantitative and qualitative studies in the self-help field that can provide meaningful contributions to treatment outcomes and research directions. The purpose of this article is to review the origins and history of the self-help movement. Despite the breadth and depth of research and related findings thus far, opportunities for further investigation of certain aspects of self-help groups remain. For example, an examination of the challenges in this type of research and comparative work with respect to other treatment modalities has the potential to provide further insight into optimizing the use and expanding the applications of the self-help experience.

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