What Are AA Chips?
AA Chips – also known as sobriety coins – are small round tokens that are given to members of AA (Alcoholics Anonymous), 12 step programs, and other sobriety groups. They typically mark great achievements in sobriety and recovery, as well as mark the amount of time an individual has remained sober.
“This chip represents AA’s commitment to you – not your commitment to us”
– A common saying when coins are awarded
A Brief History of AA Chips
AA chips were first thought to have been used in 1942 in Indianapolis, though The Portland Group in Maine were recorded to have used colored poker chips to mark sobriety time around the same year. Other AA and 12 step groups around the country quickly adopted the practice for themselves, and by 1965 a Ramsey, Minnesota manufacturing company was producing the medallions in bulk.
Why Are AA Chips Important In Recovery?
The chief importance of the use of chips on recovery is to keep the recovering addicted motivated throughout recovery and into sobriety. Coupled with ongoing AA meetings, the chips mark success and struggles in sober life, marking the amount of time that one has continued to successfully abstain from drugs or alcohol.
While each chip has its own significance in the lives or those receiving them, there are many chips that are meant to serve significance to all who receive them. The white chip, for example, is given for 24 hours/1 day of sobriety. The significance of this chip is to show the first day into recovery, and to give hope for continued success and sobriety. The white chip also has meaning for those who have relapsed, signifying the first day of returning to sobriety.
What Do The AA Chip Colors Mean?
Usually made of anodized aluminum or plastic, the AA chips for recovery are often given colors to mark or designate milestones in recovery.
Colors of coins are as follows:
- 1 Month AA Chip: Red
- 2 Month AA Chip: Gold
- 3 Month AA Chip: Emerald/Green
- 4 Month AA Chip: Gold
- 5 Month AA Chip: Red
- 6 Month AA Chip: Blue/Dark Blue
- 7 Month AA Chip: Purple
- 8 Month AA Chip: Gold
- 9 Month AA Chip: Purple
- 10 Month AA Chip: Emerald/Green
- 11 Month AA Chip: Red
- Yearly AA Chips: Bronze/Varied
Chips for 12months/1 year are typically bronze or tri-plated, and are often more intricate than monthly chips.
AA Meetings with The Treatment Center
At The Treatment Center, we are proponents of the use of 12 step programs in recovery, alongside other holistic and results-based treatments and therapies.
We believe that the meetings can be a great way to reaffirm sobriety after inpatient care, and a great environment for those recovering to be surrounded by positive people and influences.
The Treatment Center staff, alumni, friends and neighbors often can be found attending one of the many AA, NA and 12 Step meetings in South Florida.
Additional Tools for Sobriety and Relapse Prevention
The 12 steps are a great tool for those that are new to recovery and sobriety. Tools and resources such as the 12 steps help to paint a picture of day to day sobriety and can be a foundation when struggles arise. The 12 steps are just one of the tools that we employ at The Treatment Center, and recommend for our guests and anyone in the recovery process. For individuals who are new to recovery, or are simply considering starting the journey to sobriety we recommend our free Recovery Toolkit.