Wednesday 14th March 2012
If you or a loved one is suffering from an alcoholism or drug addiction, getting the right treatment is key to ensure your best chances of a return to living a normal and happy life again, clean and sober.
People from all walks of life become addicted to alcohol and other drugs and depending on several factors the individual symptoms will differ, therefore each individual needs a customized and continually updated treatment plan.
In this article, we will discuss the different types and intensity of alcoholism treatment and drug rehab programs available.
Inpatient Treatment (Primary Care)
Once a person has crossed from drug or alcohol abuse to dependency / addiction it’s best to receive inpatient treatment.
We’ll talk more about out-patient or after-hours rehab later in this article as it’s better suited for alcohol and drug abuse and not full blown addictions.
Initial inpatient treatment involves a residential stay at a rehabilitation center, which could last up to anything between 28 days or 42 days (4-6 weeks).
Residing in a treatment center allows the addict to receive 24 hour medical care and supervision from qualified addiction treatment consultants, including doctors, a nursing team, qualified counsellors and social workers, psychologists and psychiatrists if need be.
This multidisciplinary approach is best to develop a comprehensive treatment plan and ensure that the patient’s holistic needs are met.
Inpatient treatment includes the use of educational groups, videos and lectures where the addict is taught about their addiction and how to take responsibility for their recovery.
Individual, group and family therapy sessions will also be experienced during inpatient treatment, to help the recovering alcoholic learn from their family’s experience of them whilst they were drunk.
Learning from other alcoholics in treatment and recovery, people in a similar position as themselves is immensely useful. Having this support teaches alcoholics and addicts that they are not alone and they need not try to recover alone either.
Supporting families affected by alcoholism is key to successful outcomes of treatment.
Secondary Care Treatment
Secondary treatment, which is the beginning of transitional care, is the next step in the recovery process.
This allows enough time and space for alcoholics and addicts to process issues that are secondary to them staying clean & sober and learning to respond to life’s events in a healthier manner.
Secondary care treatment is less structured than Primary Care and patients are taught how to plan their reintegration into a new life after rehab.
Most upmarket alcohol rehabs work at removing any roadblocks their patients may have about using the 12 steps of Alcoholics Anonymous and Narcotics Anonymous to best effect and patients are expected to attend several in house and independent meetings of AA and NA each week.
Halfway House (Tertiary Care Treatment / Sober Living House)
A halfway house, which can also be defined as tertiary alcohol treatment, gives the patient more responsibility in managing their recovery and to prepare them to return back to normal society life.
Some of the requirements that a halfway house includes is that the individual has to be out of the house during the day working, studying or being productive in some way.
Having a safe and supportive environment to return to each evening and share your struggles is a useful way of learning to live clean and sober. A minimum number of weekly 12 step meeting attendance is expected.
Intensive Outpatient Treatment
Intensive outpatient treatment programs receive similar treatment to what inpatient rehabilitation offers, with the difference being that they can work during the day, attend after-hours rehab and return home every night.
This form of treatment is more suitable to people with alcohol and drug abuse problems that are not yet fully addicted.
Outpatient addiction treatment programs are set up to focus on awareness of the problem and relapse prevention strategies. Sometimes patients attend an out-patient rehab as a more supportive means of re-integration after inpatients as a means of continuing their treatment plans and better ensuring recovery.
After Care Treatment
It’s important to note that there is no cure for addiction to alcohol or other drugs, and even after rehabilitation in treatment centers, you will still need to manage your addiction recovery.
After care treatment programs give recovering individuals the opportunity to receive ongoing support once they are back to fully functioning lives, playing a critical part in preventing relapse.
Article by We Do Recover