Life After Rehab

Posted in: Recovery

May 28, 2014

A man standing in front of arrows pointing in two directions

When people get help for addiction, they are making an important step toward getting their lives back under control. Rehab can be an excellent way for people to stop using drugs in a safe and controlled environment; it is also the perfect place for them to learn how to understand and manage addiction in the future, because they will learn how to control stress without turning to drugs. But rehab only lasts for a short time, and afterwards people must figure out how to live addiction-free without the assistance of a rehab center. The best way to beat addiction is to make a plan for staying sober and to find people who will support, encourage and hold users accountable to their plans.

The 2012 National Survey on Drug Use and Health reports that approximately 2.5 million people who needed substance abuse treatment in the year before the survey actually received it at a rehab center. This number represents only about one percent of the total population of drug addicts and users, as most people who need addiction help either do not receive it at a treatment center, or they do not receive it at all.

Keys to Effective Addiction Treatment

People who attend rehab need quality treatment to ensure their success in both short- and long-term recovery.

As the National Institute on Drug Abuse explains, the following are keys to effective addiction treatment:

  • Viewing addiction as a complex, but treatable disease
  • Individualized rehab plans
  • Accessible treatment
  • Holistic approach to care
  • Adequate length of treatment (a minimum of 90 days)
  • Modifications to treatment, if necessary
  • Assessment and treatment of co-occurring disorders
  • Monitoring of substance abuse
If a treatment centers offers the aforementioned services, then a user is more likely to recover.

How to Succeed in Long-term Recovery

After people complete rehab, they are ready to return to everyday life. When they do this, they need to remember that life will be very different without drugs, and that they may have to make some major changes to stay sober. Rick Nauert reports that, according to the findings of a group of addiction experts, recovery is not simply about staying away from substances.

Instead, it is a full lifestyle change that includes each of the following aspects:

  • Personal health: People take care of their mental and physical health
  • Positive relationships: Recovering users makes sure to engage in healthy and productive relationships with friends and family who support recovery
  • Citizenship: People participate in activities in the community to help others

Not only should recovering addicts make sure to work on all aspects of life, but, as John Lloyd describes, they should also acknowledge and celebrate how rehab changes their lives in the following ways:

  • Having a new focus: Without drugs clouding their minds, recovering users can identify and address the underlying causes of addiction
  • Sober socializing: Recovering users should figure out how to be comfortable in their own skin, as well as how to interact with others, as these skills will help them meet people and make encouraging friends
  • Increased happiness and self-esteem: With the freedom that comes from recovery, recovering users might experience a greater sense of joy and self-worth
  • Better ability to listen to their own needs: Recovering users will experience emotions as they did before the addiction began, and they can learn how to process and express these emotions in productive ways
In other words, recovering users can have thriving lives if they seek professional help.

Get More Information About Life After Rehab

Life after rehab can be intimidating to people that do not know what to expect, but users can get and stay clean if they prepare for long-term recovery and discuss ways to maintain sobriety. If you or someone you know is ready to take the next steps toward a new life in recovery, our admissions coordinators can help answer any questions you may have and guide you through the process. Give us a call at 615-490-9376 today.

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