Alcoholism is a disease that hasn’t changed much in the United States over the last several decades. It is still one of the most significant problems that we face today and is responsible for the death and destruction of hundreds of thousands of lives each year. However, what has changed are the treatment options that are available for alcoholics. While in the recent past these options were pretty grim and offered little chance of success, today’s alcohol treatment options are compassionate, progressive and provide an incredible opportunity to break the chains of alcoholism and begin a lifetime of productive sobriety. The following is a description of these treatment options and how they can help anyone suffering from alcoholism.
The first step in alcohol treatment is to detox and Intensive Outpatient Program. This is the physical process of ridding the body of alcohol and the symptoms that are sometimes experienced during detox can be quite uncomfortable and in rare cases, deadly. This is why people suffering from alcoholism should always seek help from a professional detox center and never attempt to detox on their own. After completing a detox program lasting anywhere from 7 to 14 days, the next step is more intense long-term treatment.
For most people a Intensive Outpatient Program will provide the best chance of success
These programs are intense and are focused on reality-based treatment. This means that clients both live and receive treatment in the same supervised professional treatment center. This type of program generally lasts for 28 to 30 days and is the most comprehensive type of alcohol treatment available. Clients in this program will cook, clean, attend groups and appointments and essentially be required to take responsibility for their own treatment with the careful guidance of addiction counselors.
The next step down from a residential program is a partial hospitalization or day/night program. This consists of intensive therapies during the day at a structured treatment center followed by evening groups and transport to a supervised clean and sober living environment. PHP or day/night programs are often the best choice for people who have recently relapsed or for those who have just completed a residential inpatient program. PHP programs are custom-made for the client and can last anywhere from 30 to 90 days or even longer.
Outpatient programs are generally utilized by people who have relapsed numerous times or for those with less severe addictions, such as marijuana dependence. Outpatient programs generally provide therapy several times a week, and some more comprehensive programs provide semi-supervised clean and sober living in the evening.
All of these treatment options for alcoholism utilize numerous types of therapy in order to help a recovering alcoholic to develop and utilize skills and support systems that will play a critical role in maintaining sobriety for life. If you or someone you love is suffering from alcoholism and you’d like to get more information about these treatment programs and how they can work for you, then all you need to do is pick up the phone and take that first step. It’s a lot easier than you think!