An Overview of Drug and Alcohol Rehab Aftercare
For many people, recovery is a lifelong journey that doesn’t end with rehab. Drug and alcohol rehab aftercare programs offer numerous services that can help you stay sober for months and years after leaving treatment.
While going to a New Jersey rehab center is the first and most important step of the recovery process, it is only the beginning. Most people only spend 30-90 days in rehab after spending years – sometimes decades – relying on drugs and alcohol on a daily basis. As a result, it takes most people longer than your average treatment stay to adjust to life in sobriety.
Fortunately, there are many different aftercare services and organizations available across New Jersey to help recovering addicts and alcoholics stay sober and be successful. Let’s take a look at the different kinds of rehab aftercare services available.
Treatment Facility-Based Aftercare Programs
Most addiction treatment centers in New Jersey have their own aftercare programs for patients who complete the inpatient or PHP level of care. The type of programs offered varies greatly from one facility to the next, however, the most common are:
- Intensive outpatient programming (IOP) – IOP is considered a step-down from inpatient treatment. Patients will go home at night while attending several hours of therapy five days a week.
- Outpatient programming (OP) – OP is considered a step-down from IOP. Patients will attend between 2-6 hours of group therapy sessions each week.
- Alumni groups – Alumni groups consist of people who have completed treatment at a specific rehab facility. They might have an online support group, in-person meetings, and other social and recreational events. Rather than therapy, this is a form of peer support.
Many comprehensive rehab centers will encourage their patients to participate in all of the above-listed services. After all, recovery doesn’t happen overnight. By taking advantage of these types of aftercare, you can slowly transition out of a structured residential setting while still getting the support you need.
Individual Therapy and Recovery Coaching
Enrolling in weekly or biweekly individual therapy and/or recovery coaching sessions is another form of aftercare that can help you prevent relapse. Therapy can address any underlying emotional or mental issues that you have as well as teach you coping skills, communication skills, and relaxation techniques. All of these things can help you avoid relapse and stay mentally well.
Recovery coaching, on the other hand, involves meeting with a certified recovery coach, often someone who is in recovery themselves and works for a treatment center, to consult with them about your recovery. You may talk to them about the meetings you are attending, whether or not you are meeting with a sponsor, and how your recovery is progressing.
Recovery coaches can direct you to local resources and make suggestions to you that may help aid your recovery journey.
Sober Living Homes
Sober living homes are residential living facilities for people in recovery. Some operate independently while others are affiliated with addiction treatment centers. They require residents to stay sober, take random drug tests, participate in 12-Step meetings, and more.
Since a lack of a stable drug- and alcohol-free environment is a major obstacle to long-term recovery, sober living homes provide a solution. Studies have found that sober homes can help people avoid relapse, incarceration, and return to treatment. This is a great way to ease the transition from inpatient rehab to regular, day to day life.
Recovery Support Groups
Addiction specialists always encourage patients to find a recovery-based support group to attend on a regular basis. Some examples of these support groups are:
- 12-Step programs like Alcoholics Anonymous (AA), Narcotics Anonymous (NA), and Cocaine Anonymous (CA)
- SMART Recovery
- LifeRing Recovery
- Celebrate Recovery
- Women for Sobriety
- Secular Organizations for Sobriety (S.O.S.)
- Refuge Recovery
The vast majority of people choose to participate in a 12-Step program. These fellowships focus on helping newcomers stay sober by developing a relationship with a Higher Power. They follow 12 steps that are outlined in the book, Alcoholics Anonymous, and are guided through their sobriety by a sponsor.
Peer support is one of the most important parts of drug rehab aftercare, and any of these groups can provide the type of fellowship you need to stay sober. While none of these support groups can take the place of therapy, they provide a free, long-term solution for people in recovery.
Get Started With a New Jersey Aftercare Program Today
If a 30-day stay in rehab was enough to keep you sober, relapse rates wouldn’t be as high as they are. Unfortunately, rehab is only the beginning. If you want to stay sober after rehab, you have to learn how to apply the things you learn in treatment in the real world and find other ways to cope without the use of drugs and alcohol.
At New Jersey Addiction Interventions, we can help you find the right drug and alcohol rehab aftercare program for you. To learn more or to speak with an addiction specialist, pick up the phone and contact us today.
Medically Reviewed: February 4, 2021
All of the information on this page has been reviewed and verified by a certified addiction professional.