Study: Chatbots could help people with substance use disorder avoid relapse

A digital chatbot could be one way to help individuals with substance abuse disorder, according to a new study published in Drug and Alcohol Dependence.

The study, which was conducted during the COVID-19 pandemic, found that individuals with SUD using the chatbot Woebot significantly reduced their substance use occasions more than individuals on the waitlist, who did not receive the intervention. The bulk of participants in the test group also said that they would recommend the intervention.

Researchers found that participants using the chatbot decreased their substance use occasions by a mean of 9.1. Meanwhile participants in the waitlist had an estimated marginal mean reduction of 3.3 occasions. Researchers did note that participants in the control group had a significantly higher CAGE-AI and DAST-10, which are used to test for alcohol and drug use respectively, score than those in the study group.

Eighty-eight percent of participants in the study group said they would recommend the chatbot intervention. Researchers also evaluated mood changes but didn’t find any major changes between groups.

Read the article in full AT THIS LINK.