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What to Expect During Long-Term Alcohol Rehab

Everyone experiences addiction in different ways, and so the most effective strategies will also vary from one person to another.

Navigation: Long-Term Alcohol Rehab, How Do Long-Term Treatment Programs for Alcoholism Work?, What to Expect from a Residential Treatment Program?, What are the Benefits of Long Term Alcohol Treatment?, How Does Alcohol Rehab Address Mental Health Disorders?, Rehab Is Your Best Chance


For those who are struggling with substance use disorder (SUD), it is important to receive proper treatment. However, there are many different addiction treatment options out there and choosing one can be an intimidating experience. Let’s not forget that there is still plenty of stigma surrounding alcoholism and rehab. Just convincing someone to seek help in the first place can be difficult because you need them to face their fears.

You can support someone more effectively by doing your own research and finding out more about the available treatment methods. You need to understand what a standard treatment plan looks like and what you can expect from certain facilities. Other than that, you also have to think about other factors like location, cost, and perhaps most importantly, length of treatment.

Everyone experiences addiction in different ways, and so the most effective strategies will also vary from one person to another. There is no one-size-fits-all formula for treatment. Here we are going to focus on long term rehab treatment for alcohol use disorder (AUD).

Generally speaking, most rehab centers offer treatment programs that are 30, 60, or 90 days long. Some patients may only need a short stay while others may have to go through longer treatment. It depends on different factors like the severity of addiction and withdrawal symptoms.

While lengthier treatment programs may be more intimidating, research shows that longer rehab stays produce better results. Let’s take a closer look.


Long-Term Alcohol Rehab

Before we get into the definition of long-term rehab treatment, let’s discuss what alcohol use disorder is. Alcohol use disorder is also known as alcohol addiction or alcoholism. It is a medical condition in which the person compulsively drinks alcohol even when they are already experiencing its adverse effects. They will keep drinking despite the consequences.

It is a problematic pattern of drinking that leads to significant impairment or distress. AUD is diagnosed based on certain criteria, such as tolerance, withdrawal, the unsuccessful attempts to cut down or control drinking. Other factors also come into play such as the amount and frequency of alcohol consumption.

Alcoholism will impact many different aspects of a person’s life including their health, their work, and their relationships with other people. Drug and alcohol abuse are similar in the way that they can both cause addiction. Left untreated, they can cause serious physical and mental health problems.

There are long-term treatments designed for alcohol abuse, drug abuse, and other types of substance use disorder. Whether it’s drug or alcohol addiction, there is an appropriate level of care for it.

Long-term alcohol rehab refers to a treatment program for individuals struggling with alcohol addiction, which lasts several months or longer. These programs often provide a comprehensive approach to recovery, including individual and group therapy, medical support, life skills training, and aftercare planning.

The goal of long-term alcohol rehab is to help individuals achieve sustained sobriety and improve their overall quality of life.


How Do Long-Term Treatment Programs for Alcoholism Work?

The length of alcohol treatment will vary depending on several factors affecting the person’s condition. Longer rehab stays give patients plenty of time to recover physically and mentally. And while treatment programs may also vary in terms of their approach, rehab facilities will generally use a combination of the following: medical detox, therapy, medication, aftercare planning, and support groups.

Each rehab center will have its own unique strategy or specialization, but these are the most commonly used methods. Addiction treatment works best when detox and therapy are combined to help the patient get sober and stay sober for the long term.

Detoxification is the first step in the program. Its goal is to help the patient detox from alcohol and any other substances. During detox, their alcohol intake is lowered gradually while their withdrawal symptoms and cravings are managed by medical professionals. This process can be difficult and dangerous, so medical supervision is necessary.

Some patients may also receive medication to help manage withdrawal symptoms and cravings. The goal of medical detox is to keep the patient as safe as possible as their body flushes out the harmful substances. Once the physical aspect of addiction is addressed through detox, the patient can go through therapy.

During alcohol treatment, patients receive individual and group therapy to help them understand the root causes of their alcoholism and learn healthy coping skills. This may include behavioral therapy, cognitive behavioral therapy, and motivational interviewing. This is where most rehab centers differ in their approach.

A huge part of addiction treatment is aftercare planning and relapse prevention. While relapse is a common thing that happens to a lot of people in recovery, it’s certainly better if you plan for it and know what to do ahead of time.

Long-term treatment programs often include relapse prevention planning and support. This includes teaching patients how to recognize triggers, develop healthy coping mechanisms, and maintain sobriety. They are going to need these skills once they leave rehab and face the realities of life. Patients are often referred to aftercare programs to help them continue their recovery journey.

Continued care is usually recommended for people leaving rehab. Patients are encouraged to attend support groups such as Alcoholics Anonymous (AA) or other peer support programs. These groups provide a sense of community and ongoing support as patients work towards recovery.

The goal of long-term treatment programs for alcoholism is to provide comprehensive, individualized care to help patients achieve and maintain sobriety.

What to Expect from a Residential Treatment Program?

Substance use disorders can have a lasting impact on a person. This is why the recovery process is said to be a lifelong journey. Addiction is a chronic disease, meaning there is no cure for it, but it can still be treated effectively. It’s important to know what to expect from a residential treatment program so you can eliminate the fear and anxiety of going to rehab.

For people who are suffering from addiction, it is essential that you remain patient with yourself. Relapse is a very common obstacle on the path to long-lasting sobriety. Do not let it discourage you. It only means there is more work to be done. Don’t hesitate to seek help again if you relapse.

To fully understand residential treatment, let’s talk about what it is. Residential rehab refers to a type of rehabilitation program where individuals with addiction, mental health, or behavioral issues reside in a supervised, inpatient setting for a set period of time to receive intensive treatment and support.

The goal of residential rehab is to help individuals overcome their addiction, improve their mental health, and develop new coping skills and behaviors that support a healthier and substance-free lifestyle.

Here’s what you can expect from a residential treatment program. For starters, this type of treatment will provide round-the-clock care.

Residential treatment programs provide 24-hour care and supervision to support the recovery of patients.

During the treatment, the facility will use various therapeutic approaches. The program may offer a range of evidence-based therapeutic approaches such as cognitive-behavioral therapy (CBT), dialectical behavior therapy (DBT), and other individual and group therapies.

Group therapy provides a supportive setting for patients to share their experiences, work on their interpersonal skills, and learn from each other.

People in recovery may also receive individual therapy to help them work through their personal challenges, develop coping strategies and gain insight into their addiction.

Patients receive medical monitoring to ensure they are physically and mentally stable and address any related medical issues. For patients with co-occurring disorders like mental health conditions, they will also receive psychiatric services.

Most of these programs offer outdoor and recreational activities as part of their program. This helps patients relax, build new skills, and improve their physical and mental well-being.

Residential substance abuse treatment is all about providing a safe, supportive, and structured environment for patients. It encourages healthy habits and routines that patients can apply to their normal life.

Keep in mind that treatment timelines will be different for each individual patient. Each patient will have unique needs and challenges that they need to overcome. Even the most well-thought-out plans could be disrupted by specific difficulties. In some cases, extended care options are needed to help patients reach their recovery goals despite these challenges.

So when people ask “how long is treatment for alcohol addiction?” there isn’t a standard answer. However, you can still do your research and get an idea on what to expect from the rehab facilities near you. The Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) is a good resource for all things addiction treatment-related.

What are the Benefits of Long Term Alcohol Treatment?

Each program type has its own set of benefits. Long-term alcohol treatment is generally known as the most effective program type for those with AUD, especially patients with severe symptoms.

Going through a long-term alcohol treatment program can help improve the patient’s physical health. It can help them overcome physical health problems caused by prolonged alcohol use, such as liver damage, heart disease, and malnutrition. By addressing these health concerns, it becomes easier for the person to focus on therapy and their mental health.

Speaking of which, it also has mental health benefits. Long-term treatment can help individuals manage their mental health issues, such as depression, anxiety, and other mood disorders.

They will also experience improved social relationships. As we all know, addiction tends to affect other aspects of a person’s life, including their relationships with other people. Long-term treatment can help individuals to rebuild their relationships with friends and family and even improve their social skills.

Their self-esteem and confidence will be boosted, which will help them in many other areas of their life such as their career. This will improve their employment prospects and help them achieve their career goals.

Staying longer in a treatment facility can even increase a person’s chances of staying sober. This is because they receive the support and resources they need to maintain recovery over the long-term.

How Does Alcohol Rehab Address Mental Health Disorders?

When a person struggling with addiction also has a mental health disorder like anxiety, depression, bipolar disorder, post-traumatic stress disorder, or borderline personality disorder, this is called a dual diagnosis.

Dual diagnosis refers to a condition where an individual is diagnosed with both a mental health disorder and a substance use disorder at the same time. Treatment for both conditions is required for successful recovery.

Alcohol rehab addresses mental health disorders by integrating mental health treatment into the overall recovery program. This approach recognizes that many individuals struggling with alcohol addiction also suffer from co-occurring mental health conditions.

The following are some of the ways alcohol rehab addresses mental health disorders:

Dual Diagnosis Treatment: Dual diagnosis treatment is a comprehensive approach that addresses both the substance abuse and mental health issues simultaneously. The goal of this approach is to help the individual achieve and maintain long-term recovery.

Psychotherapy: Psychotherapy, also known as talk therapy, is an effective treatment option for many mental health disorders. During psychotherapy, individuals are encouraged to discuss their thoughts, feelings, and experiences in a safe and supportive environment.

Medication Management: For individuals struggling with severe mental health conditions, medication may be prescribed to help manage symptoms. The medication management program is carefully monitored and adjusted to ensure maximum effectiveness.

Group Therapy: Group therapy is a therapeutic approach that brings individuals together to share their experiences, support one another, and work through their problems. Group therapy is often an effective way to address the underlying mental health issues that contribute to substance abuse.

Holistic Treatment: Alcohol rehab may also incorporate holistic treatments, such as yoga, meditation, acupuncture, and massage, to address both physical and mental health. These therapies are designed to help individuals find peace and balance in their lives, which can support long-term recovery.

In conclusion, alcohol rehab addresses mental health disorders by taking a comprehensive and integrated approach to recovery. By addressing both the substance abuse and mental health issues, individuals are better equipped to achieve and maintain sobriety.

Look for an addiction treatment facility near you today and get started on your road to long-lasting sobriety. There are plenty of long term rehab treatment programs out there that can help you beat alcoholism.

Rehab is Your Best Chance

Treatment is an addicted individualʼs best option if they want to recover. Beating an addiction not only requires eliminating the physical dependence, but also addressing the behavioral factors that prevent them from wanting to get better. Simply quitting may not change the psychological aspect of addiction. Some people quit for a while, and then take drugs or alcohol again, only to overdose because they did not detox properly. Recovery involves changing the way the patient feels, thinks, and behaves.


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Fel Clinical Director of Content
Felisa Laboro has been working with addiction and substance abuse businesses since early 2014. She has authored and published over 1,000 articles in the space. As a result of her work, over 1,500 people have been able to find treatment. She is passionate about helping people break free from alcohol or drug addiction and living a healthy life.

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