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Short-term vs. Long-term Rehab

The decision to seek the help of a rehab center is already courageous and difficult for most addicts to make. Then comes the process of choosing between long-term rehab and short-term rehab options.

Of course the initial desire to consider short-term treatment is usually what pops up. Generally, nobody wants to consider spending months in treatment. Likewise, close and careful considering should be taken prior to making a decision to seek a short-term program rather than a long-term program.

Why Choose Short Term Rehab?

Short-term programs provide “intensive but relatively brief treatment” and are usually followed by a less intensive aftercare program. For example, if the individual is in an inpatient facility, they may be recommended to attend outpatient care afterward. If they are already attending outpatient rehab, they may be recommended to transition into a support group after the program is over. Short-term rehab, whether residential or outpatient, usually lasts from around 6 to 12 weeks, but patients almost always require continued treatment afterward.

Why Choose Long Term Rehab?

Short-term vs. Long-term

Short-term rehab generally lasts between 6 and 12 weeks.

Long-term programs often try to help patients adjust to the change in lifestyle by asking everyone involved in their treatment––doctors, nurses, counselors, volunteers, and other patients–––to work as active components in their recoveries. It can take longer for a patient to begin to create long-term, positive changes in this type of rehab, and the program usually lasts somewhere from 6 months to a year. However, it is often very effective for those who have intense physical and psychological dependence on drugs and who may not receive enough help through short-term care.

What if I Can’t Decide?

If you’re having trouble deciding, we can help—call our helpline toll-free at 800-481-6320. Support specialists can assist you in determining your individual needs in terms of whether a short term rehab center that offers up to 12 weeks of treatment can be beneficial or if you may be better off choosing a longer duration program of care.

Regardless of whether you choose short-term rehab or a long-term rehab program, some help—any help—is better than not getting help at all. Don’t let a fear of how long treatment will take prevent you from seeking help in the first place. Once you begin the journey to recovery, you’ll quickly realize that effective care, no matter how long it takes, is the answer to your problems.

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