The Role of Aftercare in Drug and Alcohol Rehab Programs
Many individuals who complete drug or alcohol rehab programs in Palm Beach participate in aftercare programs. When a person completes residential treatment, whether it was a 28-day program or a 90-day program, adjusting to life after rehab isn’t always easy. People typically experience an array of emotions in early recovery – from good ones like joy to more unpleasant ones like stress and anxiety. While it’s easy to manage these emotions in a residential treatment setting where people are supported by therapists and peers, it’s important to know how to cope after treatment is over.
These skills don’t develop overnight. Instead, most people need ongoing counseling and support. After rehab, individuals may be adjusting to new living environments, trying to find a job, rebuilding relationships with their loved ones, and trying to stay sober. This is a lot to deal with alone, which is why aftercare programs are so important.
Types of Drug and Alcohol Rehab Aftercare Programs
All aftercare programs serve a common purpose of helping people maintain their sobriety. They do so through an array of behavioral therapies, holistic activities, counseling, and relapse prevention. There are many types of aftercare programs that each serve their own purpose. Furthermore, you don’t have to pick just one component of aftercare. In fact, addiction specialists in Palm Beach encourage using all possible forms of aftercare that are available to you.
Intensive Outpatient Programming
Intensive outpatient programming, or IOP, helps ease the transition from residential or inpatient treatment to sober living. Therefore, many IOP programs are offered to residents in sober living homes. Therapists, case managers, and doctors work together to provide resources and continuing therapy to patients who are looking to strengthen their sobriety.
IOP typically consists of several sessions a week that last for several hours each. The structure of IOP is similar to that of inpatient treatment as it uses behavioral therapy, counseling, and medication-assisted treatment to provide a whole-patient approach. The only difference between inpatient and IOP is that the latter is less structured and aims to bridge the gap to a lower level of care.
Outpatient programming, or OP, is similar to IOP but it is even less structured. Patients only attend therapy sessions a couple of times a week and focus more on relapse prevention techniques. Many OP facilities will also help clients find a job, adjust to living sober, and with 12-step facilitation.
Overall, outpatient programming serves many purposes that are first introduced in IOP programs, including:
- Create structure and discipline
- Address underlying issues
- Develop a positive support network
- Implement new healthy behaviors and lifestyle changes
- Improve and practice coping skills
- Learn problem-solving skills
- Discuss challenges and come up with practical solutions
These goals are met through psychotherapy, medication management, education sessions, and job search assistance. Once a patient shows that he or she can effectively manage sobriety on their own, they may transition out of outpatient treatment entirely.
Sober living homes are a form of aftercare that provides long-term support. If patients chose to go to sober living, they will live in homes with other people in recovery. These dwellings are monitored by behavioral health technicians and require random drug and breathalyzer testing. Each sober living home is different, but most have requirements that each tenant must meet in order to stay in the home. These include, but are not limited to:
- Job requirements
- Weekly/monthly rent
- Must be sober
- Participation in a 12-step group
- Assigned chores
- House meetings
- Participation in IOP/OP/Counseling
Sober living homes are a great way to ease the transition from rehab to living on one’s own. With 24/7 support in a sober, healthy environment, people are more likely to be held accountable and stay sober.
Support groups come in many forms, but all provide lasting solutions to sobriety. For many people, addiction is a chronic, relapsing disease that requires life-long treatment and maintenance. Although therapy serves an integral purpose in early recovery, later sobriety is easily managed with the help of a sober support network. Among the most popular support groups for substance abuse include Alcoholics Anonymous (AA), Narcotics Anonymous (NA), Cocaine Anonymous (CA), Refuge Recovery, SMART Recovery, and LifeRing. As soon as a patient gets sober, even while in treatment, it’s suggested that they begin immersing themselves in the support group that best meets their needs.
Many established drug and alcohol rehab programs in Palm Beach have an alumni group that acts as another type of aftercare program. Alumni groups consist of people who have previously attended the treatment center and are dedicated to maintaining their sobriety in the long-term. Some alumni groups even hold their own recovery-based meetings. However, many alumni aftercare programs focus on keeping the community connected and healthy. Some activities that alumni groups may participate in include volunteering, community service, outdoor activities, and other fun group outings. Participating in a treatment center’s alumni program is a great way to stay connected, be accountable, and stay sober.
Take Control of Your Sobriety Today
Whether you’ve been sober before or you’ve never tried to stop, our addiction specialists in Palm Beach are here to help. We know that recovery is more than a 28-day residential addiction treatment program – it’s an ongoing process. That’s why we specialize in intensive, evidence-based drug and alcohol rehab aftercare programs. Are you ready to live a life free from drugs and alcohol? Take control of your sobriety by calling us today to learn more about our addiction aftercare programs in Palm Beach.
Medically Reviewed: April 9, 2020
Medical Reviewer | CWC Recovery Staff
All of the information on this page has been reviewed and verified by a certified addiction professional.