Q. How long does long-term rehab last? Does the time differ depending on the substance patients are addicted to?
Most inpatient rehab facilities offer different length programs to fit the individual needs of their patients. These programs range from 30 to 90 to a year long depending on the individual. Ninety-day rehab stays are the gold standard for recovery. While 30 days can go by quickly, 90-day programs allow the patient to settle in and explore their newfound sobriety. If patients are considering choosing a 30-day program over a 90-day stay, it is important to factor in how long they have been addicted and the severity of their addiction. For people who have struggled with their addiction for many years, a 30-day program might not be long enough.
Preparation, motivation, and understanding take time, they are not instantaneous results gained from a few meetings and therapy sessions. A 90-day program will focus heavily on each of these, as well as give patients the time they need away from the temptations. The benefits of staying in a rehab longer are achieving a greater understanding of one’s own addiction and the outside pressures that can lead them back to it. The purpose of rehab is to set you on a hopefully irreversible path to recovery and sobriety. Recovery can take varying lengths of time for different people; there is no set time it takes in order for someone to recover.
Q. What is involved in long-term addiction treatment?
While no two recoveries will be exactly the same and great rehab facilities will tailor their treatment plans to each individual patient, there is a common treatment practice that many rehab centers follow.
Before the rehabilitation process can begin, the individual who is
struggling with addiction needs to go through the detoxification process.The main goal of the detox process is to expedite the removal of toxins from the body. Through this process, individuals will experience withdrawal symptoms that can range from mild to acute. It is recommended to undergo detox at an inpatient treatment facility, as it will give patients immediate access to doctors and nurses who can provide medical attention and care 24 hours a day. Not only that, but it also presents a safe and controlled environment.
After a patient has undergone the detox process, it is then time for rehabilitation. During this period, there are numerous therapeutic options available. Common practices include cognitive behavioral therapy, group therapy, individual counseling, and experiential therapy. A patient’s state of mind is one of the most important aspects of recovery. Through counseling and therapy, patients discover the triggers and underlying causes of their addiction. Understanding why they became an addict in the first place can help them prevent relapses in the future.
Recovery doesn’t stop once a patient leaves the treatment facility. Many rehabs will work with their patient to build a personalized holistic aftercare treatment plan to help them maintain and improve upon their skill set in order to facilitate a smoother recovery. Aftercare programs aim to avoid relapse altogether by reinforcing and adapting patients’ coping strategies to the unique challenges that each patient encounters in his or her daily life.
Q. How does the treatment offered in long-term rehabs differ from the treatment in short-term programs?
Short-term treatment programs are usually 30 days long and most of the time will be taken up by the detox process. Depending on the patient and the addiction, detox can last up to and over two weeks. If a patient is only in a 30-day program, that means there are only two weeks left for post-withdrawal therapy. For most, this is not enough time to build the skills they need to successfully stay sober once they return home. Rehab isn’t just about getting through withdrawals, but about preparing patients for a lifetime of sobriety.
Ninety-day programs, on the other hand, will enable patients to not only undergo the detox process, but also to tackle the underlying mental issues of their addiction. Overcoming an addiction is difficult and going home after rehab before patients are ready can end in relapse. The longer stays are perfect for setting patients on the right path and giving them the tools to succeed once they leave rehab.
Q. What activities do patients in long-term treatment participate in?
The goal of rehab is to overcome addiction and set patients up for success once they leave. Many treatment centers give patients time to relax and refresh, which helps them stay on track with their recovery. Focusing exclusively on recovery without taking the time to relax with activities can cause people to feel very overwhelmed. Activities can help patients recovering from addiction to discover pastimes that they enjoy.
Depending on where the drug treatment center is, there will be different activities available. For instance, if the rehab is by the beach they may offer beach walks, kayaking, swimming, or snorkeling. Other centers offer sports including basketball and ping-pong to give patients an outlet for stress. Participating in sports can also help improve focus and coordination, which can help during the recovery process.
Other treatment centers use animals to help patients relax and de-stress. Utilizing equine therapy during recovery is becoming very popular as this type of therapy gives recovering addicts a new focus.
Additional activities that are common for patients to do include reading, puzzles, games, and yoga. Rediscovering old hobbies or even finding new ones can show the patient’s how to enjoy themselves without help from drugs or alcohol.
Q. What can a patient’s family and friends do to support their loved ones in treatment?
If someone you love has made the decision to get the help they need to overcome their addiction, it is important that family and friends take the proper steps to support that person in their journey. One way to support your loved one is to be encouraging. There will be times that they are going to have cravings and be tempted to pick up their addiction again. Instead of judging your loved one for having these feelings, encourage them to continue on their path towards sobriety. Let them know that they are strong and can push past those cravings.
Make sure everyone in your family and friend group is on the same page, so that they are available to lend a hand during your loved one’s journey. There will be many times that your loved one may feel down and feel as though they can’t push on. Your job is to give them motivation and reassure them that they can get through it. Always assure them that you are there for them through the entire process. This can help increase their positive mindset and set them on the right path moving forward. Supporting a loved one through rehab and recovery is not always easy, but always remember that you may be the only motivation that person has to get clean.