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Inpatient Alcohol Rehab

When someone is addicted to alcohol, it is called an alcohol use disorder (AUD). An AUD is a medical condition that requires treatment, just like any other chronic illness. One treatment option that many people consider is inpatient alcohol rehab. If you have an AUD, you may benefit from an inpatient alcohol rehab program. It may help you reach your long-term health goals and help you maintain sobriety.

6 Minute Read | Published Aug 08 2023 | Updated Feb 27 2024 Expert Verified
Emma Collins
Written by
Ashley Bayliss
Reviewed by
Emma Collins
Written by
Ashley Bayliss
Reviewed by

What Is Inpatient Alcohol Rehab?

Inpatient alcohol rehab is an intensive treatment option for anyone struggling with an alcohol use disorder.

If you choose inpatient treatment, you will live full-time at the facility. The staff monitors your health and provides medical and psychological care whenever you need it.

There are various types of inpatient alcohol rehab programs available, including short- and long-term programs. Short-term programs may include stays between 3 and 6 weeks in length, while long-term programs typically last between 6 and 12 months.

These are some of the potential interventions you may receive in an inpatient alcohol rehab program:

Each inpatient alcohol rehab program will have a different philosophy and treatment approach. You will find different amenities and program offerings at each facility. You will need to research various programs to find the rehab facility that will work with your needs.

If you need help finding a program, you can call our professional and confidential helpline at (800) 429-7690 to talk to an inpatient rehab support specialist.

Types of Inpatient Alcohol Rehabs

There are many types of inpatient alcohol rehab programs. Some of these cater towards specific populations, while others may have a unique treatment approach. Here are some of the various types of programs available:

  • Holistic rehab: If you are interested in alternative treatments for your alcohol abuse disorder, there are inpatient holistic health rehab centers available. These facilities typically use a “whole person” approach to treatment that treats both your body and mind. They might offer programs like yoga, meditation, acupuncture, or massage therapy.
  • Faith-based: Connecting with your spirituality is a common practice in rehab facilities. While many programs rely on 12-step programs that include an aspect of spirituality, faith-based rehab facilities will incorporate religious or spiritual principles into most daily activities.
  • Luxury: Luxury rehab facilities have the same goal as other rehabs–to help people overcome their reliance on drugs or alcohol. However, luxury centers do this in the most comfortable way possible, usually in scenic settings. These facilities are typically more private and offer low patient-to-staff ratios for more individualized treatment.
  • LGBTQ+: Many people in the LBGTQ+ community also experience substance abuse. A rehab facility dedicated to the unique challenges of this group creates a safe place for LGBTQ individuals to feel more comfortable with themselves.
  • Teens: Teenagers are naturally curious and often experiment with drugs and alcohol. When this experimentation turns into addiction, it is crucial that teens receive treatment as early as possible to prevent severe long-term consequences.
  • Senior citizens: In the United States, substance abuse is typically considered something that afflicts younger generations. Because of this, many older people experience a lot of stigma with their substance abuse. A rehab program specifically for older people can be a more comfortable treatment experience.
  • Men only: Men respond to drugs and alcohol differently than women. In addition, many men find it difficult to be vulnerable and share their feelings. Because of issues like this, a rehab facility dedicated only to men may be helpful for some people.
  • Women only: Many women with substance abuse disorders also are suffering from past trauma. Rehab facilities designed specifically for women address any experienced trauma and substance abuse, while offering a safe, supportive community.
  • Veterans: Substance abuse is a growing concern among veterans in the United States. A 2017 study found that veterans were more likely to report heavy alcohol use than non-veterans (7.5% vs. 6.5%). Rehab facilities for veterans can address substance abuse and other common veteran-related issues such as PTSD and suicidal thoughts.
  • Victims of sexual abuse or trauma: People who have experienced sexual abuse or trauma are two to three times as likely to abuse drugs or alcohol. Attending a rehab facility that specializes in treatment for sexual trauma can help those individuals develop healthy coping skills while getting treatment for their addictions.
  • Dual diagnosis programs: If you experience an alcohol addiction in addition to a mental health condition like depression, you may want to consider a specialized inpatient rehab facility. These treatment programs can help you address your psychiatric disorder, while also helping you through your addiction.
  • Executive rehab: Executive rehab programs are designed for working professionals. Theyallow participants to work remotely, while going through inpatient treatment. These programs are usually short-term and last about 30 days.

Medications for Alcohol Addiction

The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has approved various drugs to treat individuals with alcohol use disorder, this is called medication-assisted treatment.

  • Disulfiram: When alcohol is metabolized, it produces acetaldehyde. Disulfiram, also called Anabuse, stops your body from breaking down acetaldehyde, which causes it to build up in your bloodstream. When this happens, you have a negative reaction to any alcohol you consume, ranging from increased heart rate, to nausea, and headache. The goal of disulfiram is to produce a negative association with alcohol and encourage abstinence. It is widely considered a very effective drug for alcohol abuse disorders.
  • Naltrexone: This drug is an opioid antagonist that is used to treat both opioid and alcohol use disorders. It disrupts the pleasurable sensations typically felt after drinking alcohol and can help encourage sobriety.
  • Anticonvulsants: Some anticonvulsants, such as carbamazepine and gabapentin, can be effective treatment for alcohol abuse disorder. These drugs help with alcohol withdrawal syndrome and help reduce cravings for alcohol.

One study compared the efficacy of disulfiram, naltrexone, and anticonvulsants on alcohol use disorder. It found disulfiram to be the most effective.

Benefits of Inpatient Alcoholism Care

Numerous studies have shown that inpatient rehab programs tend to have higher success rates than outpatient programs.

Here are some of the key benefits you can expect from an inpatient rehab setting:

  • Highly structured routine
  • Separated from everyday stressors and temptations
  • Time to focus exclusively on your alcoholism recovery
  • 24/7 treatment and care
  • Addresses underlying causes of addiction
  • Helps overcome damaging behavior patterns

Disadvantages of Inpatient Alcohol Rehab

While inpatient rehab has some distinct benefits, there are a few drawbacks that could be challenging for some people, such as:

  • More expensive than outpatient rehab
  • Not being able to work or go to school
  • Missing life obligations, such as taking care of children or pets
  • Little or no access to outside friends and family

Who Is Inpatient Rehab Best For?

Anyone who is struggling with an alcohol addiction can benefit from the structured atmosphere and individualized attention of an inpatient rehab facility.

However, there are certain people who may particularly benefit from it including individuals with any of the following conditions or considerations:

  • Severe alcohol addiction
  • Addiction to multiple substances
  • Mental health conditions along with substance abuse
  • Lack of support systems at home
  • History of dropping out of outpatient rehab
  • Require medical detox

Find the Right Inpatient Alcohol Addiction Program

You are not alone in your fight to overcome addiction to alcohol. We have recovery support specialists available 24 hours a day 7 days a week to take your call. They can talk to you about your treatment needs and help you find the best inpatient alcohol addiction program for you. Give us a call today at (800) 429-7690.

Common Questions About Inpatient Alcohol Rehab

The cost of inpatient alcohol rehab will vary by the treatment center and the types of services it offers. It will also depend on where the facility is and what type of insurance coverage you have. You will need to communicate directly with a facility to learn specific costs.

Many health insurance plans do have some coverage for alcohol rehab programs. However, the level of coverage will vary based on the type of insurance you have.

The amount of time you spend in inpatient alcohol rehab will depend on the program you choose. The shortest programs last about 30 days, while some programs can last six months or longer.

If your health is suffering, most of your life revolves around your alcohol use, and you have struggled with outpatient programs before, it may be time to consider an inpatient facility.


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bullet National Institute on Drug Abuse. (2021, August 4)
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bullet Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (US) (2016, November)
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bullet Hammond, C. J., Niciu, M. J., Drew, S., & Arias, A. J. (2015, April)
"Anticonvulsants for the treatment of alcohol withdrawal syndrome and Alcohol Use Disorders"
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bullet Li, J., Wang, H., Li, M., Shen, Q., Li, X., Rong, X., & Peng, Y. (2020, November)
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bullet Finney, J.W. et al. (1996, December)
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