Long-term treatment programs are inpatient programs that may last anywhere from 6 months to well over a year. Most last a year or longer. These programs are sometimes known as “therapeutic communities.”
Who is Qualified for Long-Term Treatment?
Among those who may benefit from long-term drug and alcohol treatment are people who:
- Have “co-occurring disorders” alongside addiction (like depression, anxiety, schizophrenia, etc.)
- Have attended more than one inpatient program or who relapsed quickly after leaving a program
- Can afford it
- Began using drugs so young that they never learned how to structure a day without drug use
- Take more time to learn lessons
- Have stressful home lives or cannot focus on recovery without temptation in their homes and neighborhoods
Long-term treatment programs are inpatient programs that may last anywhere from six months to well over a year. Most last for a year or longer. These programs are sometimes known as “therapeutic communities.”
How Does Long-Term Treatment Work?
Participants in long-term treatment programs have much more time to work on the various problem areas in their lives. Treatment is structured to work through all such problems over the course of the full treatment period. Clients usually start working on basic problems and gradually build up to the more complex. For example, patients may begin with a very strict set of rules and no freedom. As patients progress and have more time in recovery, freedoms may be given to encourage continued growth and effort.
Different long-term programs utilize different treatment models. Some programs require that their clients stay in a strict, supervised environment for the entire length of their stay. In other programs, after stabilization, patients are required to learn to live on their own and become accountable for their recovery.
Long-term treatment is very helpful for people who need extra help in getting and staying clean and sober, but it does not offer a “cure” for addiction. Addiction is a disease that must be monitored and managed over a lifetime. Anyone who participates in a long-term inpatient treatment should consider aftercare.