Alcoholics Anonymous (AA) is the longest-running mutual aid group for people with alcohol use disorders, and AA turned 85 years old in 2020. Though there has been much criticism regarding AA and other 12-step programs, there has been an equal amount of evidence to support their efficacy. This chapter explores the history of AA and other 12-step approaches, the foundational philosophy of the 12-steps, the key elements that support recovery, cultural considerations for special populations, and a review of the criticisms as well as strengths of 12-step approaches. The chapter concludes with recommendations for the integration of the approach into clinical practice.
Part of the book: Addictions