What Is Alcoholics Anonymous (AA)?

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Alcoholics Anonymous (AA) is a peer-support 12-step program for people with alcohol use disorder (AUD).1,2 Studies show that people who attend AA meetings and formal treatment programs are more likely to stay sober for longer time periods than those who only go to formal treatment.10

In the United States in 2020, there were more than 1.4 million members and 69,812 AA groups across the nation.3,4 Near Las Vegas, there are more than 130 different AA meetings.5

When Should I Go to Alcoholics Anonymous?

When alcohol starts to get in the way of your ability to function, many people decide that it is time to make a change and start to attend meetings.7 Alcoholics Anonymous welcomes anyone who wants to address their drinking problem. No one is turned away, no matter where they are in their recovery journey.2,7

Studies show that AA is effective at supporting recovery efforts.1 Attending meetings several times a week can help build on the foundation of what was gained in formal treatment, such as alcohol detox or rehab.1 In fact, many treatment programs encourage attending AA meetings while still in treatment to develop a sober support group outside of treatment and learn healthy habits that will continue after treatment is completed.1

The 12 Steps of AA

The foundation of the Alcoholics Anonymous program is the 12 Steps.2 These steps build on concepts of surrender, acceptance, self-awareness, humility, responsibility, outreach, and service to others. They are considered to be ongoing throughout your recovery and never truly completed.

Is Alcoholics Anonymous Religious?

AA is not a religious group. People from all backgrounds are welcome, regardless of religion or lack of belief.7 But the program does have a spiritual focus, including belief in a higher Power (often referred to as God) as well as prayer.7 That said, each AA member can decide for themselves what “God” or “higher power” means, including having no spiritual beliefs at all.7,9

There are also secular alcohol support groups that do not use religious or spiritual concepts, such as:

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How to Find Alcoholics Anonymous Near Me

Alcoholics Anonymous groups hold meetings across the country. You can find one by visiting Find AA Near You. Click the link for the state in which you’d like to find a meeting. The site will give you a list with the names, addresses, and phone numbers of AA partners in that state. If you prefer online meetings, visit the Online Intergroup of Alcoholics Anonymous.

If you live in Nevada, use the links below to find an AA meeting near you. Or call the 24/7 Nevada AA hotline at 702-598-1888.

Support Groups for Families of Alcoholics

Alcohol use disorder affects more than just the person who drinks. If someone in your life has a drinking problem, you may need help addressing your own feelings around this. Many support groups help friends and family learn how to set healthy boundaries and support a loved one’s journey to sobriety. Some of these include:

  • Al-Anon. An off-shoot of Alcoholics Anonymous and based on similar 12-Step principles, this is a group for family members and loved ones of someone who has a problem with alcohol.
  • Alateen. At Alateen meetings, teens who have been affected by someone else’s alcohol use can connect with other teens. They share their experiences, give and get support, and work through the 12 Steps.
  • SMART Recovery Family and Friends. This support group builds off the foundation of the SMART Recovery program. It uses evidence-based therapeutic techniques to help people learn how to effectively support a loved one who is dealing with an AUD.

Treatment centers also commonly offer support groups for spouses and family members of someone who is or has been in treatment at that facility. Local recovery organizations in your area may have support groups for families of people with alcohol problems. Finally, some religious and community programs also offer resources for family and friends.

How to Get Help for Alcohol Addiction

American Addiction Centers (AAC) is a leading provider of alcohol and substance use treatment in the country. With a treatment center in Las Vegas and others across the nation, AAC makes it easy to get high-quality treatment no matter where you are. All AAC treatment centers offer specialized support groups, including 12-step meetings and virtual support groups. For more information about how AAC can help you start your recovery from alcohol misuse, call our free, confidential helpline 24/7 at