Why Aftercare Services Are Important for Addiction Recovery
Addiction is a disease that affects over 20 million Americans over the age of 12. But the complicated nature of this disease, as well as the continued negative view of people who suffer from it, mean that only about 11 percent of people seek help for their condition. Even when people decide to make the commitment to an addiction rehab program, many aren’t sure what to expect. They may think that, once the program is done, they will be cured and able to live a normal life. Unfortunately overcoming an addiction isn’t that simple. Addiction is considered a relapsing disease. This means that even after treatment people have a high change of using again at least once. The key to ensuring life-long sobriety is drug rehab aftercare.
Finding the Best Aftercare Program For You
Just as every person’s rehab journey is different, so too are aftercare journeys different. A quality rehab facility will help you to transition to the right aftercare program by discussing your options with you. This occurs before it is time to leave rehab. By having an aftercare program in place before your rehab treatment is over, you won’t be left worrying about how to handle the next step in your recovery journey. The best drug rehab aftercare programs will have an array of services to offer you that help support every aspect of your new life. These can include:
- Continuing education
- Financial planning/budgeting assistance
- Housing and transportation
- Legal advice
- Medical checkups
- Mental health treatment
- Relationship counseling
- Vocational training
Types of Drug Rehab Aftercare
As with addiction rehab programs, drug rehab aftercare programs offer different levels of care to meet the needs of all clients. Most people leave rehab directly into a more intensive aftercare program. Then, they slowly step down into less restrictive ones as their confidence and independence grows. The most common drug rehab aftercare program options include:
Sober Living Homes
This is the option that most people transition to immediately after rehab. These places can be short-term or long-term depending on your needs. They require you to live at the facility. At first you will likely have restrictions on when you can leave, when your scheduled sessions are, and when you have to be back to the facility each day. For people with unstable housing, or who have drug users still living at home, sober living homes provide a safe and stable place to get back on their feet after rehab. Over time, you will earn more freedom by completing your treatment plan and proving that you are ready for more responsibility. This helps to teach you how to manage your time without succumbing to the temptation of using drugs once again.
Outpatient Treatment Programs
These programs are best suited to people with stable housing and supportive families. You will be allowed to live at home and attend treatment at the facility during set times each day. Your time at the facility will likely begin with a few hours a day. It will slowly taper to just a few hours a week. Outpatient drug rehab aftercare programs allow people with unavoidable family or job responsibilities to still receive the treatment that they need.
Support groups are the least restrictive type of drug rehab aftercare programs. These are groups that meet at a set time each week. They typically meet in the evenings, for people to attend after work or school. They can include 12-step groups, non-12-step groups, and peer support groups. Support groups provide safe spaces for recovering addicts to talk about their struggles with sobriety. In addition, celebrate achievements, and simply spend time with others who know exactly what you are going through. Many people find them to be an invaluable tool. They help them with a healthy way to cope with drug cravings or temptation. They also teach them how to live a normal life outside of their addiction.
Why Drug Rehab Aftercare is Important
While it may seem overwhelming at first, committing to both a drug detox program and a drug rehab aftercare program is truly the best way for addicts to find long-term success in sobriety. Being able to have a community of people who understand the struggle of addiction, and know ways to help you cope, is going to provide you with the support you need to continue living a sober life. Over time, you will find that aftercare will help you avoid relapse and provide you with a safe and non-judgmental place to turn to when you need help.