2013, 8:6 doi:10.1186/1747-597X-8-6
An individual’s ability to recover from substance misuse can be understood in terms of their ‘recovery capital’; the resources they can draw upon in the initiation and maintenance of recovery . Resources may stem from their social networks, education, employment, financial assets, health, beliefs and values etc. Recovery capital can also be considered a way to conceptualise the barriers to and facilitators of recovery with higher levels predicting sustained recovery from substance misuse  and negative recovery capital, such as mental illness or incarceration, impeding one’s capacity to recover .
While total abstinence may not be a pre-requisite for recovery, findings suggest that most ‘self-remitters’ – people whose recovery capital enables them to overcome addiction unaided by treatment – choose to abstain from future substance use . Recovery capital is also thought to be accumulated over time as a person remains abstinent from drugs and alcohol [15,16].