Abstinence Rule

Abstinence rule, as applied to psychoanalysis, refers to the minimization of satisfaction of needs that the patient finds outside of the analytic situation. In other words, this is a strategy to reduce a patient's desire/ability to relapse into their drug of choice.

For example, many patients, when leaving an inpatient drug abuse program, are strongly advised to not return to their former drug-related social situation or hangout where there would be too many triggers that might cause a relapse.

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