Does Rehab Work?

Written by Chloe Nicosia

Treatment for Addiction – Does Rehab Work?

With relapse statistics such as the Journal of the American Medical Association article placing relapse rates at between 40 and 60 percent for the first year of recovery, it is easy to ask the question “does rehab work?” The drug rehab success rate should not based solely on whether a person relapses or not since addiction is a chronic relapsing disease to begin with.

In this article, we will answer the question “does rehab work?” and look at what elements make it more successful.

Does Rehab Work?

Does rehab work for opiate addiction and other substance addictions? In short, yes.

Addiction is a treatable mental disorder but it does not have a simple cure. The drug rehab success rate for addiction treatment is compared to diabetes, asthma and hypertension. While all of those diseases are treatable, they may have stages of relapse but as a natural part of recovery not because treatment has failed.

Does rehab work when a person relapses after treatment? As is the case in hypertension, if a person shows symptoms after treatment, the treatment is still seen as successful. When relapse occurs in addiction, then it is seen as the time to adjust or reinstate treatment. It is important to realize that the disease of addiction is something that will likely require years and even a lifetime of management.

Elements of Treatment That Make it More Successful

Does rehab work for opiate addiction and other addictions? For treatment to meet with success, there are a few core elements that need to be in place. These are considered to be guidelines for treatment that all rehabs should adhere to. The following are some of the main factors that affect treatment results.

  • Adaptable treatment – Treatment must be adapted to each individual. Since there can be different factors leading to a person’s addiction and different ways that the addiction manifested, treatment needs to account for the individual’s unique needs.
  • Time spent in recovery – The amount of time that is spent on intensive recovery is important. There is no overnight cure for addiction and the time a person needs to be able to benefit from treatment seems to be at least three months. Shorter than this can cause the treatment to be incomplete in some cases.
  • Medication and therapy – Medications to treat addiction, such as methadone, have been successful at treating addiction. However, they are best used in conjunction with research-based therapy, such as motivational interviewing. A treatment plan for more severe addictions to drugs such as heroin should incorporate both methods of treatment.
  • Co-occurring mental disorders – As many as half of the patients that are treated for addiction also have another mental health problem. For treatment to be successful in such cases, the patient should receive traditional addiction treatment along with treatment that focuses on their co-occurring mental disorder, such as therapy for depression.
  • Treatment plan adjustments -Throughout an individual’s treatment process, the person needs to have continual evaluations to ensure that the plan is meeting the person’s treatment requirements. Even in the event of relapse, treatment simply needs to be adjusted to better fit their changing needs.
  • Treatment should address other issues – Treatment for addiction should not just focus on the addiction itself, but also on other areas of the person’s life such as their health, legal issues and vocation. The ultimate goal of treatment is to help the addict to become a happy, productive member of their community.

If you or a loved one is struggling with addiction, get help right away. Make a phone call that will connect you to a professional drug treatment center. The call you make may save your life or the life of someone you love. Call us today at 1.800.429.7690.

Sources:

https://www.drugabuse.gov/publications/principles-drug-addiction-treatment-research-based-guide-third-edition/frequently-asked-questions/how-effective-drug-addiction-treatment

https://jamanetwork.com/journals/jama/article-abstract/193144

https://www.drugabuse.gov/publications/principles-drug-addiction-treatment-research-based-guide-third-edition/principles-effective-treatment