Leisure constraints experienced by people in early recovery from substance use disorders

Jason Page, Brent Hawkins, Jasmine Townsend, Stephen Lewis, James Byrne

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

Study Purpose: While leisure may help develop recovery resources, individuals in recovery from substance use disorders face a range of constraints to leisure participation. Accordingly, this study sought to increase understanding of leisure constraints experienced by individuals in early recovery living in community residences. Methods: Participants were recruited from community residences and a recovery community center. The study utilized a paired/triad interview methodology to collect participant views on leisure constraints during early recovery. A priori coding categories were based on the three types of leisure constraints (intrapersonal, interpersonal, and structural) outlined by Leisure Constraints Theory. Results: Staff and program structure impacted all constraint types. At the intrapersonal level, residents felt unsupported in their leisure decision making leading to self-doubt in activity selection. Interpersonally, residents discussed the challenges of managing relationships and isolation. Structurally, residents perceived a lack of choice of leisure resources, and constraints presented by the residences’ program structure. Conclusions: This study found programs and program staff may serve as constraints on residents’ ability to engage in recovery-oriented leisure. Additional staff training and utilization of recreation therapists could be beneficial to help residents make connections between recovery and leisure.

Original languageEnglish (US)
JournalJournal of Substance Use
DOIs
StateAccepted/In press - 2022

Keywords

  • community residences
  • Constraints
  • recovery
  • substance use disorders

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Health(social science)
  • Medicine (miscellaneous)

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