When people join forces in a group, a unique process follows. They feel psychologically stronger and suggestible, thereby enabling trained group leaders to implement constructive changes.
Additionally, groups minimize the intense feelings of guilt, shame and isolation associated with chronic medical conditions and diseases. This is only possible when people come together in a safe, protected environment and create a healing community in which each member feels validated.
The group bonding and camaraderie that develops over time, due to patient-to-patient interaction and direct, open communication between medical providers and the group, empowers individual members. It makes them realize that they are not alone in their struggles. Moreover, they may identify with someone, who might be ahead of them in self-care behaviors.
These group experiences develop increased feelings of self-efficacy as well as a deeper understanding of an individual’s medical condition. It also leads to more effective patient coping mechanisms for managing their health issues at home.