Clinical Philosophy

Holistic Bio-Psycho-Social-Spiritual

Addiction Services for York Region (ASYR) embraces a holistic, biological, psychological, social and spiritual approach to addiction. A holistic approach places the person at the centre. The person is bigger than, and is not defined by, the addictive behaviour.

Relational and Attachment Perspectives

zen stone and green leaf showing wellness concept

Addiction needs to be viewed within the context of relationships, including multi-generational family system, societal and cultural systems.  As a result, addiction is defined in relational terms, as an unhealthy relationship between the person and the substance/activity, where addiction becomes a coping mechanism, perpetuating negative consequences and their recurrence. We believe substance use/activity acts as a medium to provide temporary relief from overwhelming experiences.

At ASYR, we see wellness as more than symptom removal. Addiction is not viewed within the individual alone. We view it within the context of our physiology, your family and culture. Systemic intervention addresses three levels of relationships: the person’s relationship with the substance/gambling; the person’s relationship with him/herself; and the imbalance of interpersonal interactions that result from addictive behaviour.

Harm Reduction

The agency uses a harm reduction approach in addiction treatment. Harm reduction incorporates a spectrum of strategies, from lessening the harm to abstinence. We equally respect clients who choose abstinence or harm reduction.