You have plenty of options.

There are more paths to recovery now than there ever have been before- with so many different types of treatment, someone seeking recovery for their drug or alcohol addiction is bound to find a program or group that they like. However, this also means looking for treatment can be a bit overwhelming. So, let’s take a closer look at the types of treatment available. 

  • Long-term residential treatment: This is the traditional, ‘rehab center’ setting. Patients stay for a period of 6-12 months and participate in a highly-structured program with 24 hour care that focuses on understanding addiction and taking accountability for it. Long-term facilities may also offer more comprehensive care, like employment training and relational counseling. “Every day you have without a drink or drug in your system is a positive,” says In The Rooms co-founder Ron Tannenbaum,” and “[long-term residential treatment] gives you the opportunity to build up those drinkless, drugless days.”
  • Short-term residential treatment: Similar to long-term residential treatment, short-term residential treatment uses the 12-step approach for a more intense approach to recovery. Patients stay for 3-6 weeks, and the treatment facility may be in a hospital. Additionally, these types of programs have lengthy outpatient programs that follow. 
  • Outpatient treatment programs: Outpatient programs can vary in length and intensity and are often used as a follow-up to inpatient residential programs or used in tandem with group counseling. These programs are less expensive and less demanding than inpatient programs, but they may not be as effective as inpatient programs. 
  • Individual drug counseling: Individual drug counseling focuses on short-term behavioral changes and is typically used in tandem with group counseling. This type of counseling is individualized and can focus on specific areas of healing (relational, social, emotional, professional, etc.) for the patient. Counselors can also make referrals to other types of treatment as needed.
  • Group counseling: Group counseling often follows programs like AA, NA, Life Ring, or Women in Recovery. A group meets weekly and discusses their personal experiences with substance abuse and addiction. They are led by someone with group counseling experience, or a licensed facilitator or counselor. These programs offer long-term, consistent accountability to those in recovery. 
  • Telehealth/online recovery: A newer treatment method, online recovery is especially helpful when it is used by those who cannot access more traditional treatment methods, due to location or physical ability. Online recovery can involve apps, virtual counseling sessions, or online meetings. Online recovery is also helpful when used in conjunction with other treatment methods like group counseling or outpatient programs. 

There are many different options for recovery and different ones can work for people of different types of backgrounds and ways-of-life. These programs are not exclusive either- many can be done at the same time or done as a next step. This is not an exhaustive list, and more information on different types of programs are available. To learn more, a great resource is found in the National Institute on Drug Abuse’s “Principles of Addiction Treatment.”


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