Importance of Aftercare
Rehab never has been thought of as a cure all program when it comes to drug and alcohol addiction treatment. Addiction treatment centers have various levels of care offered for those who are living in active addiction. Most treatment programs are customized to each individual. The typical client goes through the levels of care in this order.
Statistics from SAMHSA have showed that the recommended amount of days in treatment (needed to combat a drug or alcohol addiction) is 90. Today, insurance companies are barely paying for more than a 30-day stay at most facilities.
This is where aftercare becomes so important. If insurance is only covering a month of treatment, someone who is in early recovery should seek out additional sober support after treatment to prevent any relapse.
A recovering addict who has just been in treatment for 30 days, has been living life in a controlled facility. So, having a strong aftercare plan transitions the recovering addict back into society rather than just abruptly getting all their freedom back at once. This also allows more time to process the traumas that may have not had enough time for in those initial 30 days.
Being involved in any type of aftercare programs provide continued accountability. Sober living or IOPs typically have frequent UAs (urine analysis), curfew, and clients are constantly being surrounded with sober support. These aspects allow recovering addicts a chance to gain back freedom and responsibilities while still receiving additional therapy.
After treatment there are many programs that fall in the category of “aftercare”. In most cases, the aftercare depends on the individual and how eager they are to continue healing and embracing their recovery. Staying involved in an alumni program, and doing a continued care plan is an easy and hassle free way to continue addiction treatment. With an alumni group, there is rarely a certain amount of time you are obligated to commit to, so this allows the individual to have a flexible care plan.
Transitioning back into functioning society can be a stressful task for those who are new to the sober and clean lifestyle.
Most recovering addicts were taken out of society for their rehab stay, so seeking aftercare plans must be a goal of the individual. Recovery should be the top priority in this new life so small things like finding a home group, sponsor, and a good group of sober friends are all aftercare plans that should be initiated following treatment.
When it comes down to it, the recovering addict is really the only person who can make their aftercare plan effective and beneficial. Whether it be continued treatment with an IOP or just working their steps avidly with a sponsor, aftercare is one of the most important aspects in recovery and should be a part of each day.