How Does Recovery Work At Drug Rehab?

If you’ve wondered how does recovery work at drug rehab, discover answers to your questions

If you are wondering, “How does recovery work at drug rehab,” you are not alone. There has been a shift in recent years from traditional drug rehab programs to recovery-oriented addiction treatment, without a lot of explanation of the difference. At one time, drug rehab was thought to be successful once patients stopped abusing alcohol, drugs, or other substances. Unfortunately, individuals ended up relapsing into drug abuse repeatedly after treatment, because the underlying causes of addiction were not addressed. Recovery-oriented drug rehab programs treat all the conditions that contribute to drug addiction, an approach that has proven to be far more effective in preventing relapses.

How does recovery work at drug rehab?

Recovery is the process of overcoming drug and alcohol addiction and living a healthy, meaningful life. Achieving recovery is not as simple as stopping drugs or going a certain amount of time without using; rather it is an ongoing process of managing your condition successfully. SAMHSA (the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration) has established a working definition of recovery that addresses four major dimensions that support a life in recovery: health, home, purpose, and community.

The way recovery works at drug rehabs, you receive counseling, therapy and other services that will help you achieve certain goals in each of the four dimensions of recovery. Once you have reached the desired levels, the focus moves to long-term recovery, which is maintaining the progress you have achieved as you move through life.

Health—You are abstaining from the use of the drugs, alcohol, and any other illicit substances you were abusing when you entered drug rehab. You are making informed, healthy choices that support your physical and mental health and well-being.

Home—You have a safe, stable place to live.

Purpose—You are successfully conducting meaningful daily activities These activities may include working at a job, attending school, volunteerism, creative endeavors, or family caretaking. Your efforts are gaining you the independence, income, and resources to participate in society.

Community—You are capable of establishing and maintaining relationships and social networks that provide support, friendship, love, and hope. You have proven your ability to live up to the accountability that comes with these relationships.

What do you do in rehab?

Once you enter rehab, you will go through a treatment program designed to help you overcome drug or alcohol addiction. Each addiction recovery center determines the exact path of their particular treatment regimen, but the drug and alcohol recovery process follows the same basic guidelines. Recovery treatment for drug and alcohol addiction generally follows four basic steps:

Evaluation and Assessment
Medical professionals will assess your condition and evaluate the severity of your addiction. They will identify any issues that will complicate your treatment such as co-addiction to other substances, co-occurring mental health issues, nutritional deficiencies, and other health concerns.

Medically Supervised Withdrawal / Detox
The next step to recovery from drug addiction is detoxifying from the drug(s) you have been abusing. Depending on the severity of your addiction, you may be administered medications to mitigate your withdrawal symptoms to make you more comfortable.

Addiction treatment / therapy
You may choose to enter an inpatient residential treatment center or attend outpatient addiction treatment for the next segment of your recovery from drug abuse. At this stage of recovery, addiction treatment includes education classes about the causes of addiction and strategies that will help you overcome the urge to use in the future. You will attend behavioral, group, and individual therapy, and participate in peer counseling and twelve-step groups.

Aftercare is where you develop your relapse prevention strategies further. Aftercare treatment can take the form of outpatient counseling sessions, participation in twelve-step groups, and peer counseling. Depending on the severity of your addiction, you may decide to receive your aftercare treatment during a stay in a halfway house or sober living community.

How long does recovery take at drug rehab?

Most drug rehab treatment centers offer 30, 60, and 90-day programs, but there is no set time that it takes to complete the drug and alcohol recovery process. It is generally recognized that the longer treatment programs have the greatest long-term recovery success rates. You can enter drug addiction treatment programs that last 120 days or as long as a year if you find you need extra help with recovery.


If you would like some assistance finding a drug and alcohol treatment program that offers the best chance for a lasting recovery for you or a loved one, Better Addiction Care can help. Call 1-800-429-7690 today.