The most important part of becoming an addiction counselor is the desire to want to help others in need. The pay is not great, the average being around $38,620 a year according to the statistics. Depending on the facility and education level the pay may be as high as $60,000. For example, if one has a master’s degree he or she might be more qualified for a higher position and salary. The more education in this field the better. Also, applicants must pass a background check for felonies or child abuse.
However, the rewards and benefits from helping others far exceeds this amount. Addiction is becoming a worldwide epidemic and the rate of people seeking help is growing steadily. The number of job positions in this field is growing rapidly. In fact according to USNews.com
“With a projected 31 percent employment growth rate by 2022, substance abuse and behavioral disorder counselor jobs are growing at a faster clip than many other occupations.”
In order to become an addiction counselor there are certain requirements that must be met. A certification or counseling degree must be obtained. There are several schools which offer this both online or on campus. Each state board has its own requirements so the research much be done to find the proper school depending on one’s education level. Most states require that one passes the National Counselor Examination, which is administered by the National Board for Certified Counselors in order to become a certified counselor.
Passing this exam will give one the title of a Substance Abuse Counselor. It depends on the place in which one resides. Just like becoming a Doctor, an addiction counselor must obtain a certain number of hours under supervision.
The expectations of an addiction counselor can be difficult due to the fact that some addicts simply do not want to change; whereas the counselor’s job entails finding the right treatment plan for them. It involves listening to the addict and determining what is best for them.
They try to teach the addict a healthier way of life and how to remove or rather recognize the triggers in their life. The counselor works closely with their patients and together they come up with an effective plan in order for the patient to stay sober and clean. Their work places can vary from hospitals to treatment centers as well as prisons or state funded programs. There is a wide variety of places for addiction counselors to work.
If a career in addiction counseling is what one wants they should know how helpful and rewarding the job can be. Even with the pay being average they will find the rewards of the job well worth it. They will work with the patients and others to try and help them in their recovery. It may not be a glamorous job but it is a much needed requirement in this ever growing substance abuse epidemic. The success rate for addicts is low but the counselors can provide the much needed support to help them to try and achieve success in their sobriety.