Long-Term Drug Rehab

Is Long-Term Drug Rehab the Best Choice for You?

When people are fighting drug addiction, rehabilitation is often a crucial part of the recovery process. There are various rehab programs, and they differ across multiple dimensions, including length of time, setting, and treatment approaches.

Long-Term Drug Rehab


If you or your loved ones are struggling with drug addiction, one option to look into is a long-term rehab program. These programs involve staying at a treatment facility, a drug-free environment that provides supervision, medical care, psychological therapy, and support for building a fulfilling life.

What’s the Length of Time for Long-Term Drug Rehab?

Long-term rehab lasts for longer than 90 days. In some programs, people participate between three to six months, while other programs encourage longer stays, generally up to one year.

In contrast, short-term rehab lasts for up to 90 days. People in a short-term program often stay for one or two months.

What Are the Benefits of Long-Term Drug Rehab?

Both short-term and long-term rehab generally begins with a detoxification stage. Detox provides people with compassionate medical care as they suffer withdrawal, which may involve severe and life-threatening symptoms. After the detox stage, rehab offers therapeutic interventions that lay the groundwork for a drug-free life.

If short-term and long-term programs are similar in certain ways, why do some drug-addicted people stay for a longer program? The increased length of time can offer substantial benefits, including the following:

Extra Supervision and Support

One or two months of treatment often isn’t enough to help people overcome addiction. That’s why the general recommendation is to follow up on short-term inpatient rehab with some form of outpatient rehab.

During outpatient rehab, people participate in a structured recovery program, but they typically live on their own. Because they aren’t in a treatment facility with 24-hour supervision, they’re at an increased risk of relapse, especially if they live in a neighborhood where they previously used a drug or can easily meet with a dealer.

With long-term drug rehab, people remain for a greater amount of time in a treatment facility, which is a secure, supervised, and drug-free environment. The extended supervision can be crucial during the first year of recovery when the brain is making major adjustments, and people are working on building new habits and skills for a sober life.

More Time for Treatment

During rehab, people typically participate in group therapy, and they also have one-on-one sessions with therapists or counselors. With at least a few months set aside for rehab, there’s a greater opportunity to make the most of therapy.

The extra time allows people to delve deeper into the issues that contribute to their addiction. They have more time to work on their beliefs, attitudes, and decision-making abilities. They may also get the chance to explore different kinds of therapy and find what helps them most.

Many people who are addicted to drugs also have comorbid psychological problems, such as depression and post-traumatic stress. A lengthier stay in rehab gives them more time to work on multiple serious issues alongside their addiction.

More Time for Building Healthy Habits

Part of successfully fighting addiction involves developing healthy habits for all times of the day. These new habits increase your chances of staying sober, and they improve various areas of your life, including diet, exercise, sleep, work, and personal relationships.

It takes time to build sustainable habits that work for you. In long-term drug rehab, you receive extended guidance and structure as you develop these habits. Whether you’re establishing a morning routine or strengthening your ability to focus on a work-related task, you receive critical support from the program.

Many programs help ease your transition to independent living, and one way they do this is by gradually increasing your access to certain freedoms or privileges. You have many opportunities to practice your new habits and work on life skills before your stay in rehab ends.

What Treatments Are Offered During Long-Term Drug Rehab?

Rehab involves a long-term recovery plan. These plans are individualized and based on multiple factors, including the length and severity of addiction, other psychological and medical problems, life circumstances, and personal goals. A recovery plan can also be amended to reflect changes in your life.

A high-quality rehab program will treat each person holistically. This means the program won’t address the addiction in isolation from other issues.

One effective treatment philosophy is the dual-diagnosis approach. When people have both an addiction and another psychological problem, such as depression, the rehab program works on treating both these issues. This approach recognizes that poor mental health can undermine addiction recovery and increase the chances of a relapse.

Another commonly used and well-regarded treatment approach is the therapeutic community model. The program participants work together to experience healing and gain wisdom. Therapists and addiction counselors work with each individual on crucial life skills, such as communication, organization, and emotional control. The program helps build responsibility and accountability, and it encourages an examination of damaging beliefs and behaviors. The treatment facility becomes a place where people can strengthen themselves in numerous ways, help others, and achieve personal growth.

Guided by these overarching approaches, addiction treatment can have multiple components, including:

  • Medication. Some individuals benefit from medications during withdrawal and for at least some part of their recovery period. On-site medical professionals monitor for side effects.
  • Different forms of therapy. One example is Cognitive Behavioral Therapy, which helps people work on the thoughts and behaviors that feed into addiction and increase the likelihood of a relapse.
  • Group sessions. Typically, a therapist or counselor will serve as the facilitator. A session often focuses on a particular topic, such as impulsivity, loneliness, or how to cope with stress while refraining from drug use.

Depending on their personal circumstances, people in long-term rehab may also need assistance with seeking employment, improving parenting skills, or finding safe housing after the program. They may also need medical services for acute or chronic health conditions.

One of the benefits of an individualized care plan is that it helps ensure that no aspect of a person’s life gets neglected. Treatment is never just about short-term effects. It’s about building a healthier life medically, psychologically, and socially.

Is Long-Term Rehab Best for You?

You may be uncertain and anxious about starting any rehab program. You may be wondering about how much it will cost or how you’ll be able to step away from your day-to-day life to enter a treatment facility.

Every treatment program is unique and has its own policies, including the kinds of insurance coverage it accepts. Some programs will be a better fit for you than others. That said, a long-term rehab is an excellent option for you to consider.

Although the substantial benefits of such a program can extend to any drug-addicted person, long-term rehab is especially helpful for people experiencing one or more of the following:

  • A history of relapsing.
  • A concern about relapsing quickly without more structure and support during your first year of recovery. For example, you may not yet have strong coping skills to handle cravings.
  • A long struggle with drug misuse and addiction that may have involved a previous stay at a short-term rehab program.
  • Other mental health issues that need to be treated.
  • A need to work on destructive thought patterns and behaviors in a more in-depth way and change multiple aspects of how you live.

Contact MidHudson Addiction Recovery

If you’re interested in long-term rehab and have more questions, don’t hesitate to reach out to us. We offer different kinds of high-quality, compassionate, and individualized care, and we’re happy to help you explore your options.