Though some people struggling with drug and alcohol addictions sign up for programs that last from one weekend to one month, others sign up for longer programs like an 8-week-program. Spending a longer period of time in rehab lets you spend more time working on yourself and learning what you can do to abstain from those substances once you leave. These longer programs often include a 12-step program that can help you make amends for the mistakes you made in the past too. As someone searching for a treatment program, you may want to learn what to expect during a longer program.
Work the 12 Steps
NA and AA are the two most popular 12-step programs in the world today. Though the programs are a little different and focus on those who use alcohol or drugs, both require that you complete one step and then move to the next step. While some steps are easy to complete, others will take more time and energy to finish. You start by agreeing that you no longer have any control over your life and admitting that drugs or alcohol have control over you before turning your life over to a higher power. One step focuses on making amends to those hurt by your addictions.
Become Part of a Team
Some addicts turn to drugs and other substances because they like the feeling that comes from using with others. As that substance takes control over your life, you may feel like those you use with are your real friends and that your loved ones don’t care about you because they just want you to stop using. Longer programs help you see that you can make friends without using drugs. Those in the facility will work together to take care of chores like cooking, cleaning and taking out the trash. Doing these tasks helps you feel like a part of a team and helps you form relationships with those in your group.
Attend Counseling Sessions
Nearly every rehab program in the world requires that patients attend a few counseling sessions every day or week. Those sessions allow you to talk about your addictions, discuss problems you had in the past and get feedback about your progress as you work your way through the program. Longer programs often emphasize the importance of holistic healing methods and how you can naturally treat your addiction without resorting to other drugs or substances. You will attend group sessions with others who used some of the same substances and individual sessions that let you work through your issues with a licensed therapist or counselor.
Take Field Trips
Though you might think that drug treatment centers are like jails and that you will spend your whole stay on-site, many give you the chance to take field trips during your stay. Centers often reserve these trips for those further along in their recovery. You might need to work your way up to a full field trip too by showing that you can handle shorter trips into town and supervised trips with counselors. Some programs even host overnight trips that let patients go camping together in the wilderness. You’ll usually learn if you can go on one of these trips during the weekly round-up, which is when counselors talk about your progress.
Sober Living Practice
There is a big difference between how you act in a rehab center with counselors and other professionals nearby and how you act in the real world. That is why many long-term care centers give you the chance to practice sober living before you leave. They host practice sessions that let you prepare yourself for how you would react if someone offered you a drink, if you ran into someone you used drugs with in the past or if you came across your old stash. Some centers even have rooms designed to look like offices and homes that let you imagine yourself interviewing for a new job or being at a party. Going over some of the situations you might encounter can help you learn how to react and what to do.
While spending the weekend in a detox program or a month in an inpatient facility is a suitable option for some, others need to spend more time working on their recovery and preparing for the future. Long-term care centers let you spend two months or more working on your sobriety as you attending counseling, practice sober living and complete the 12 steps.