Is aftercare necessary? Before answering that, let’s look at several factors.
People interested in attending drug & alcohol treatment centers are often concerned about the length of their stay. Unfortunately, treatment length varies depending on multiple circumstances making it difficult to determine an average length, but typically, individuals stay in treatment for 30–90 days. Brief treatment involving detox, therapy, and supportive care may be effective for some people, but treating substance use disorders is a complex process that could last years. While getting through rehab as quickly as possible may seem desirable, research shows that longer stays in rehab lead to lower relapse rates. Success is not guaranteed, but some treatment is always better than none.
Unfortunately, however, most people with a substance use disorder don’t get help. According to the SAMSHA National Survey on Drug Use and Health, 21.7 million people aged 12 or older needed addiction treatment in 2015. Yet, just 2.3 million went to rehab.
Short-Term & Long-Term Stay in Rehabilitation
Drug and alcohol rehabilitation stays can be broken into two categories: short-term and long-term. The average stay in short-term rehab is about 28 to 30 days. However, long-term rehab averages around 90 days, though longer stays aren’t uncommon in severe cases. Both treatment options include one to two weeks of detoxification followed by an assessment of the personal issues that contribute to your addiction, such as psychological trauma, chemical imbalances, and an overabundance of addiction triggers.
The Advantages of Long-Term Treatment Process
It is said that programs of at least 90 days are the most effective; short-term rehab still has a place in addiction recovery. For example, a 30-day stay is a great way for a person to take a step back and get a good look at their life. Often, these stays are enough to stun someone into committing to recovery. But for those who have been through multiple stints in treatment, who have relapsed time and time again, it might be time to consider a long-term program.
Long-term treatment gives a person the chance to really work on themselves. They have the time to get to the root of their addiction and figure out what triggers their use. They also have the opportunity to develop a strong support system and form healthy relationships.
In addition, long-term treatment provides a sense of structure and routine. This can be extremely beneficial for someone who has been living in chaos. A long-term program can help a person feel like they are part of something and that they have a purpose.
Finally, long-term treatment can give a person the confidence they need to stay sober. It can show them that they are capable of living a life without drugs or alcohol. It can also provide them with the tools they need to stay sober once they leave treatment.
Why Longer Rehabilitation Preferred?
Despite the advantages of short-term rehab, long-term treatment is often necessary in severe cases. Often, it is the last option for people who have struggled with short-term treatment or multiple relapses. Other benefits of long-term rehabilitation include:
- Extra time to relearn vital “life skills” you may have neglected
- 24-hour health care options
- Detoxification doesn’t completely dominate the treatment
- It helps give the brain time to recover and heal
- Provides more time for discussing psychological concerns
- Rebuilds relationships with estranged family and friends
- Includes nutritional assistance for rebuilding a healthy diet
The Importance of Aftercare in Recovery
The true test of your recovery begins when you graduate from your program and leave the rehab facility. Saying no to drugs and alcohol is easier when you’re in a place geared toward teaching people to do so. However, continuing to say no after returning to your everyday environment is an entirely new challenge. This is why aftercare is such an important part of recovery treatment programs. Instead of completely leaving the supportive environment of treatment, it provides a step down from higher levels of care. Aftercare effectively transitions you from a more intensive program into your daily life.
According to the NIH, it’s essential to remain in treatment for an extended amount of time. The necessary duration depends on the severity and type of patient’s issues and needs. Studies show that most addicted individuals need around three months in treatment, at a bare minimum, to reduce or stop their drug use significantly. Staying in treatment for longer periods generally results in more positive outcomes. Recovering from addiction typically takes multiple attempts at treatment spread out over a long period of time.
With regard to drug addiction, NIH states that relapses are typical and should be addressed as such. Because individuals frequently leave treatment prematurely, programs must have methods to keep patients in treatment.
Start Your Journey in Recovery Today
Evoke Wellness at Cohasset provides men, women, and families with comprehensive, integrated care to set a solid and lasting foundation for lifelong recovery from substance use disorders. This does not just end after you leave our facility, as we offer aftercare services to help you stay sober and avoid a relapse.
Our facilities are staffed by experienced and compassionate professionals, including licensed therapists and psychiatrists, addiction specialists, and highly qualified support staff. Our team members are extremely understanding and treat each client with an unmatched level of respect. Evoke Wellness at Cohasset is fully accredited by the Joint Commission, which shows our dedication to offering the highest quality of addiction care for each person that steps through our doors.
Call us today at 866.931.6429 and get started on your journey to long-term sobriety.