The answer to the question, “how long does rehab take?”, falls into the realm of ”how long is a piece of string?”. Rehabilitation takes many forms. 

Some people are fortunate enough to take part in an in-patient program, others have the benefit of outpatient services. A few people choose to go it alone.

Apart from the type of rehabilitation that you undergo, there are also issues around your personal circumstances. These include the nature of your addiction, how far down the road you’ve progressed, and how quickly you ‘get it’. 

Here’s a general idea.

The Aspects of Addiction Recovery

There are three basic stages in rehabilitating an addict. Each of these has its own time frame, depending on the person.

1. How Long Does Detoxification Take?

Recovery from the physical effects of addiction is a relatively straightforward process depending on how long your body takes to heal. Most rehab centers still conform to the belief that 28 days is the average amount of time the body takes to get back to normal.

This isn’t strictly true though, that time-frame isn’t based on any scientific evidence at all. For starters, it doesn’t take the extent of the damage done into account. Some people may never recover from the physical effects of addiction.

2. How Long Does Rehab Take?

Since 28 days have become the norm, most health insurance pays for that number of days, which explains why many addiction centers comply with it. Many facilities, like this alcohol and drug rehab center, offer several customized programs so they can spread the net as wide as possible. 

To try and help you as much as they can, most alcohol and drug rehab centers will insist that you stay for 28 days, although it’s recommended to extend your stay for as long as you can afford.

During your time at an inpatient facility, you’ve got a lot of damage control to do:

  • You need intensive group and individual counseling
  • You have to accept accountability
  • You’ve got plenty of bridges to mend
  • Depending on the facility, you may need to complete a 12-step program’
  • You have to learn new habits

All these aspects are highly individualized and depend on whether you’re willing and able to achieve them. Of course, in the less intensive environment of outpatient treatment, things take a lot longer.

The usual time-frame for outpatient programs is from 3 months to a year, or more.

3. How Long Until You Recover From Addiction?

Recovery starts the minute you decide to stop using, and it continues for as long as you want to stay sober and clean.

Once you’ve left formalized treatment, you should seriously consider continuing with therapy. Whether this by means of AA and NA, with a private therapist or as part of some other organization is up to you.

Truth is, staying on the straight and narrow is the hardest part of your rehabilitation. 

Revisiting the Question

So, how long does rehab take? The answer to that question is up to you. If you can, stay in treatment until you and your therapist feel confident that you can go it alone.

Focussing on yourself and making your recovery and rehabilitation a priority is the shortest route to success. 

Keep reading our blog for more information on how to optimize your health and mental wellbeing.