Rehab options for drug and alcohol abuse problems vary as much as the individuals who access them. For example, some addicts need a long-term rehab programme while others do perfectly well with short-term rehab. What’s the difference? That’s what we’ll explore in the following paragraphs.
To begin with, it is important to note that the term ’short-term rehab’ is relative. We say that because rehab programmes can be as short as one week and as long as a year. What you need really depends on your current circumstances. What’s more, what might seem like a short amount of time to you could feel like an eternity to someone else.
What we typically refer to as short-term rehab is either a standalone seven-day detox programme or a programme that combines detox with a four-week rehab programme. These shorter programmes are a good option for recovering addicts who don’t have a long history and who have a good support system in place.
The absolute shortest rehab programme you could engage in is a standalone seven-day detox programme. And when we say standalone, we are implying that you will not be receiving any structured psychotherapeutic treatments following detox. You may take advantage of community support groups on your own, but there is nothing officially in place for you to receive.
A standalone seven-day detox is a choice some people take advantage of if they only have a limited amount of time to devote to rehab. However, in order for this option to work, you must be 100% committed to permanent abstinence. After all, permanent abstinence is the only true cure for addiction.
You should know that detox could be conducted using either a medicated or a non-medicated model. The non-medicated model, also known as ’cold turkey’, is generally the most effective way to completely detox in a short amount of time. Medicated detox makes the process a bit more comfortable, but the medication can prolong detox beyond the seven-day window.
All of this can be discussed with your GP or a rehab clinic when you decide to seek treatment. Ultimately, what is best for you in your current circumstances is the option you would be wise to choose.
For every one individual who can successfully break his or her addiction through a standalone detox programme, there are others who require additional help by way of psychotherapeutic treatments. That is where a four-week programme comes in. Such a programme consists of one-week detox and three weeks of therapy. The purpose is to address addiction from the psychological angle, as a complement to physical detox.
What types of psychotherapeutic treatments are involved with a four-week programme? The two most common are: cognitive behavioural therapy and group therapy. Both have a proven track record of success over the last several decades.
Cognitive behavioural therapy, also known as CBT, is a one-on-one counselling therapy originally developed to help those suffering from psychological disorders like clinical depression. The key to CBT is its approach. Rather than being open ended, it is specifically designed to be implemented with a series of goals the recovering addict needs to reach. As each successive goal is reached, the next one is presented. The entire therapy can be concluded in 12 to 15 sessions.
As for group therapy, this is something that has been in use since the early days of Alcoholics Anonymous. Group therapy aims to take advantage of the ’strength in numbers’ principal by utilising a group of clients to provide mutual support and accountability. Group therapy consists of many different things, including joint counselling sessions and planned exercise activities.
Whether a recovering addict chooses a standalone seven-day detox or a four-week rehab programme, what happens after his or her treatment is just as important as the treatments themselves. In reality, the treatment is only the beginning of a lifelong process of recovery.
The addict choosing a seven-day detox programme will need to access community-based services if he or she needs help avoiding relapse. Again, support groups are a great tool for this purpose. There are support groups covering all sorts of illicit drugs, prescription medications, and alcohol. As for the addict who chooses a four-week rehab programme, he or she will be involved in something known as aftercare.
Aftercare is a collection of support services designed to continue what was done during the psychotherapeutic treatments. It might include one-on-one counselling, group therapy, and any number of other therapies included in a customised treatment plan. You should know that recovering addicts who take advantage of aftercare are significantly less likely to suffer a relapse in the future.
We run the risk when talking about short-term rehab of making recovery sound very easy. We want to assure you that it is not. Recovering from substance or behavioural addiction can be very difficult and uncomfortable during the treatment process. And as we mentioned earlier, recovery is a lifelong process that continues after rehab has been completed.
The single most important factor in your recovery is your attitude going in. If you are looking at short-term rehab as a quick fix to all your problems, you are already going in with the wrong attitude. We hope your attitude would be one of 100% commitment and a lifelong willingness to abstain from whatever addictive behaviour now controls you.
That being the case, we invite you to get in touch with our addiction recovery helpline right away. One of our fully trained and compassionate counsellors is ready and waiting to hear what you have to say. We will offer you a FREE and comprehensive assessment based on the information you provide. We will then recommend the best course of treatment.
All of our services are free because our only mission is to see you get well. However, our services are also completely confidential. No one ever need know you contacted us unless you want them to know. In the end, the most important thing is that you make the decision to seek the treatment you need. We are here to help you make that happen.