Why 30 Day Rehab Programs May Be Too Short

Written by Chloe Nicosia

The importance of 30 day rehab programs for recovery is immense

Many inpatient rehabs offer short, 30 day rehab programs (often, these are simply four-week programs and do no actually last an entire month). Addicts in need of treatment check in, attend detox over the first two weeks or so, and then accept therapeutic intervention of various kinds, where they learn psychological techniques likely to help them stay sober. Such 30 day rehab programs¬†and short term drug rehab centers come with a few upsides. For instance, addicts tend to often be unwilling to try rehab at all; getting them into rehab usually requires a promise of nothing greater than a short-term commitment. Once they are in, they tend to turn clearheaded and cooperative by the time they’ve spent four weeks sober. They would never agree to it going in, however.

Such short rehab stints also tend to be more affordable. In most cases, however it doesn’t make sense to sign up to a 30 day rehab program; short-lived rehab tends to be inadequate even for the most the basic of addictions. There are various reasons why this should be so.

30 day rehab programs can leave patients hanging

About 30 days or so past the beginning of sobriety in rehab, the brain begins to attain a state of postacute withdrawal. While the specific symptoms of this condition vary from one person to another, it usually includes symptoms such as a continuous and inescapable depression and an inability to feel pleasure. Called anhedonia and dysthymia, these can make life very hard for the addict just out of detox. Depressed, emotionally flat and pleasureless, life of this kind can be maddening to many, driving them to a return to drug use. Programs that go past 30 days, if only to help patients through this difficult, can be very important. There are good reasons to choose longer-duration rehab programs, as well, however.

30 days rehab programs require patients to work very hard

If patients remain addicted after the initial work of detox is done, it’s because they are psychologically addicted. In many ways, addiction is primarily a psychological condition. Coming out of such addiction requires not more medication, but more psychological therapy — recovering addicts learn to recognize areas of psychological deficiency, and correct them.

Therapy also teaches recovering addicts learning and putting into practice an all-new lifestyle that has them successfully steering clear of situations that remind them of their addictive habit, and avoiding emotional highs and lows. A mere 30-day period of therapy isn’t realistic.

Medically, longer rehab programs have better odds

Most often, the primary reason that people choose short-term drug rehab is simply that their insurance company will pay for treatment no longer. While finding a way to pay is certainly an important consideration, it’s also important to think about what actually works. Research by the National Institute of Drug Abuse arrives the conclusion that structured rehab programs that last from six months to a year offer far greater promise of long-term sobriety, especially for those who have experienced relapse before with a prior treatment program, or for those who have experienced complications such as mental disorders or physical illnesses. Programs need time to help patients with psychiatric treatment, family therapy, individual therapy, cognitive-behavioral therapy, motivational therapy and other programs.

With rehab, it’s important to do your research

To many people, finding a good rehab involves, typing inpatient drug rehab near me into a search engine and signing up to one of the first rehabs showing up in their results. This isn’t likely to work as well as, say, typing the best laptop for me in there, however.

The rehab industry receives lax government oversight, which means that there are as many poorly run rehabs as there are good ones. It’s important to work hard to learn what you can about addiction and rehab by reading good books on the subject, looking up rehab forums and reviews, and actually visiting rehabs to check out the kind of quality on offer. With this kind of effort, you are sure to find help that works.