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7 Ways Long Term Drug Treatment Programs Differ From 30-Day Drug Rehabs

When you’re struggling with an addiction to drugs or alcohol, a stay in an inpatient rehab program may be the best way to start your journey to a drug free life. The length of a residential rehab program can range from 30 days to six months or more, but how much time you spend in rehab depends on the nature of your addiction and other circumstances.

Short and long-term rehab programs share the same goals of helping people recover from addictions, but long-term programs differ from 30-day rehabs in several key ways.

1. Rehab Programs Lead to Recovery

Both short and long-term drug treatment programs offer a core set of standard services aimed at helping people stop using substances and learn new skills for living an addiction free life

A 30 day drug rehab can set the stage for continued recovery in an outpatient rehab or with other kinds of counseling and support. But for people with very severe and long term addictions, or mental health concerns along with addiction, 30 days may be far too short a time to create the changes needed for long term recovery. Long-term drug treatment programs are designed with those users in mind.

2. Long Term Withdrawal Support

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Long term rehab gives your more time to recover and focus on your health.

Inpatient rehab typically begins with detox and withdrawal, and it can take several days or weeks for the acute symptoms of withdrawal to subside. But in some cases, withdrawal symptoms can linger for weeks or months, causing users to relapse again and again to relieve them. Long-term rehab programs can offer support throughout the entire withdrawal period, with medications as needed as well as counseling and therapy.

3. Restoring Health for Lasting Recovery

Long term or severe drug and alcohol use takes a toll on the entire body. In addition to the direct effects of drug use, addiction also causes people to neglect basic self-care, such as eating nutritious foods or getting enough sleep. A longer stay in rehab allows the body time to recover, with regular healthful meals and a structured schedule. Addiction can lead to serious health conditions, too – and a longer stay in rehab can treat them as well.

4. Intensive Therapy for Lasting Change

Some people complete a short stay in rehab and then relapse –a cycle that can repeat multiple times. For them, a 30-day program may simply be too short to develop the skills and insights needed to create lasting change. A long-term drug treatment program can offer access to the intensive counseling and support that can sustain recovery for the long term.

5. Separation From Addiction Triggers

One reason for the success of inpatient treatment programs is the opportunity they provide for focusing entirely on recovery. For the duration of the stay in rehab, a person with addictions is separated from the stresses and triggers for substance abuse in daily life. This kind of long-term separation can create opportunities to reflect and develop new ways of managing these issues after rehab is over.

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6. Support for Dual Diagnosis

Many people who abuse substances also have a “dual diagnosis” – a mental health condition such as bipolar disorder and depression. Treating their substance abuse successfully also means addressing those issues. But a 30 day rehab program, even one dedicated to dual diagnosis, typically doesn’t allow enough time to treat both these problems. A longer rehab stay allows time for experienced therapists and other professionals to help patients recover in a comfortable, safe setting.

7. Preventing Repeated Relapses

Because a 30-day rehab program may not be long enough to completely address all the issues related to substance abuse and other kinds of conditions, many people relapse. A long-term treatment program can reduce the likelihood of relapses and returns to rehab by allowing enough time for the therapy and medical support that might be needed for the best chance at recovery.

Long term drug treatment programs can be very different from a “standard” 30-day drug rehab – and these programs aren’t right for everyone. But for some, a longer stay in rehab can be the key to long-term recovery, rather than a cycle of repeated relapse.

Are you looking for help with an addiction – but don’t know where to turn? We’re here to help. Contact us at 800-681-7369Who Answers? for the solution that’s right for you.

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