Long Term Treatment is Proven More Effective


How Long-Term Addiction Treatment Is Proven More Effective

Nobody becomes an addict overnight! 

Remember Charles Dodgson’s classic Alice in Wonderland where Alice scurried into a hole chasing after the white rabbit? Although, the chase started off as just an innocent play of a child, soon it transformed into something dark and sinister as Alice made her way deeper into the rabbit hole. And before she even knew it, Alice lost control and found herself stuck in a strange, unknown world.

That’s exactly how millions of people familiar with substance abuse describe addiction! Addiction is not just a simple behavioral problem caused by the addict’s lack of willpower. The proverbial rabbit hole goes far deeper than that.

Most medical professionals, including those from the American Medical Association, treat addiction as a disease for a reason. It is indeed a complicated illness that, if left untreated, ultimately leaves your mind and body in ruin.

In this sense, the popular 12-step recovery program and its many spin-offs, while useful in spiritual reconnection, have a very low rate of success for an addict’s full recovery. Those programs approach addiction as merely a psychological attachment. In reality, substance abuse drastically impairs the body’s biological functions. Mental processes slow down, and major organs suffer catastrophic damage. Addicts need a more holistic approach to battles their withdrawal symptoms and prevent relapse.


There’s no easy route or “quick-fix” to substance addiction. Instead, you should consider long-term residential treatment. Generally, these facilities offer a well-rounded approach to recovery by housing patients for 120 days or more. For many, that can seem like a scary and drastic commitment. However, this method may be just what you or your loved one needs.

Here’s why:

Why Long-Term Addiction Treatment?

When you decide to join an addiction rehab program, you’ll find there are countless treatment options available. Yet, you should also realize that your life is on the line! Not to mention, you’ll waste hard earned money on bogus programs. It’s important you invest in the right care for you.

While the 12-step program may seem like a good idea at first, don’t be deceived by their promise of a quick recovery. Recovering from addiction is always complex and filled with circumstances special to each patient. For that reason, experts usually recommend long-term treatment centers for the best chance of getting your life back.

Long-term addiction treatment centers use a unique approach to recovery – one with a proven track record of being more reliable than traditional programs. With long-term rehabilitation, patients go through all the steps recommended by medical experts to remove their psychological dependence and reverse physiological and mental damage from the substance: This process will include detoxification of the body, counseling, and group therapy sessions for addressing emotional problems, and appropriate training to ensure long-term sobriety.

What Can You Expect from Long-Term Treatment Centers? 

Rehab centers or therapeutic communities that provide long-term residential treatment are particularly effective in helping people struggling with addiction on their path to sobriety. These rehab programs typically take place outside of a hospital, and yet they still provide patients round-the-clock medical care with a team of professionals, such a psychologists, physical therapists, detox specialist, and nutritionist.

The duration-of-stay can vary anywhere between 6 to 12 months, which is long enough for your body to detoxify most substances fully. During your stay, you are encouraged to communicate with other residents, learn from them and the staff, and also participate in various therapeutic activities, as well as skill and life development programs to transition into sober life.

While the culture of many centers might differ, you can usually expect them to follow a three-step plan of treatment:

Step 1 – Detox

The recovery process starts with bodily detoxification through intensive medical treatment at a specialized location. Most long-term rehab centers in the United States begin the treatment with a biochemical detox that enables patients to get rid of all the harmful elements accumulated in the body due to the prolonged substance abuse.

Step 2 – Counseling

Next, facilities provide sensitive and confidential counseling and group-therapy sessions. Drug and alcohol abuse will always leave deeps emotional and psychological scars. These can leave recovering patients in a vulnerable state of being unable to connect with reality or make amends to loved ones they may have hurt. Long-term provides practical strategies to help patients, such as behavioral therapy and one-on-one counseling.

Step 3 – Relapse Prevention

Finally, long-term rehab centers provide patients with coping resources and training to prevent relapse, including providing a life coach, job training, and recommending continued weekly meets. Many patients feel safe and comfortable in their bubble surrounding the treatment facility. However, once they leave, they are forced to face old temptations that may complicate relationships with family and employers. This last phase of recovery aims at teaching patients to handle stressful situations without turning again to drugs or alcohol. A 28-day or shorter program will not allow an addict’s body enough time to readjust the chemical imbalance or coping skills to develop. In such a case, leaving the safe environment of a facility often paves the way inevitable relapse. Long-term treatment options gradually expose the patient again to the hardships of the real world, giving them time to deal with uncomfortable situations.

Fast Facts: Long-Term Addiction Treatment

  • The National Institute on Drug Abuse claims that long-term treatment options are associated with better outcomes compared to rehab programs that last less than 90 days.
  • Inspired by the increased efficacy of long-term treatment methods, the Residential Substance Abuse Treatment for State Prisoners Program has made it mandatory for most state and local treatment programs to last 6 – 12 months to qualify for funding. Similarly, jail-based treatments must be at least 3 months long to be eligible for funding.
  • The American Society of Addiction Medicine (ASAM) recommends a long-term residential stay for detox in cases of opioid addiction, which is to be followed by other processes including group therapies, IOP, and partial hospitalization.

Cost of Long-Term Treatment and ACA

Many people think that long-term addiction treatments are expensive because of their longer duration and higher quality facilities. That’s not necessarily true. Most long-term rehab plans are very reasonably priced for their services and accessible to everyone. The new Affordable Care Act (ACA), better known as Obamacare, mandates that addiction treatment be categorized under primary care by insurance companies, meaning even long-term treatment programs can be 100% covered. Moreover, ACA policy classifies substance abuse as a pre-existing condition, which legally insurance companies cannot use to disqualify you (unfortunately, this status might change with President Trump push to eliminate portions of the ACA).

Find a Long-Term Treatment Option with Wherehab

Addiction is a menace that compromises your quality of life in every way imaginable. Fortunately, treatments facilities in 21st century America have modernized and adapted the latest innovations in psychology and other medical fields.

When you’re choosing a long-term treatment facility, it can feel like a daunting task, especially considering there are so many frauds out there! You don’t have to panic and stress in the selection process. Wherehab is here to help by providing you the largest online review platform of rehabs nationwide. You can have confidence in your quality of care using Wherehab to find your path to recovery today.

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Hanna Marks



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