Long-Term Drug and Alcohol Rehab Programs
Addiction treatment is an important part of a person’s recovery from drug or alcohol misuse. There are several types of treatment programs, including long-term rehab, that vary in length and intensity and offer various services and amenities to serve a person’s needs.
For people who have long-term struggles with addiction, have been in treatment before, relapsed, or have co-occurring mental health conditions, long-term rehab may be beneficial.
Whether a person chooses long-term drug rehab or short-term, it’s important that treatment address the whole person through individualized treatment programs tailored to their needs.1 Research has also shown that positive outcomes are more consistent with adequate treatment time.7
What Are Long-Term Rehab Programs?
In most cases, long-term rehab is when a person stays at a facility for an extended period, typically more than 90 days. Since a person lives at the facility, it may also be known as long-term residential treatment.
The length of stay will depend on the level of care assessed by the treatment team and a person’s needs. In some cases, people may stay in a rehab facility for 6 months or more.
Long-term rehab facilities help a person address underlying issues related to their addiction beyond detox and withdrawal. They typically offer a structured environment that may include therapy, drug counseling, group facilitation, and other services to help them remain abstinent and prepare for daily life after treatment.1
Why Choose Long-Term Alcohol Rehab or Drug Rehab
There is no one treatment type that is right for everyone and effective long-term inpatient rehab is that which addresses the needs of the individual and can be short- or long-term.1
However, you or a loved one may consider long-term rehab if:1, 9
- You have relapsed.
- You have a long-standing struggle with substance misuse.
- You have specific needs like co-occurring mental health disorders.
- You want more in-depth exploration into destructive behavior and patterns.
- You need more structured, daily support than outpatient programs can offer.
Do I Need Long-Term Drug or Alcohol Treatment?
If you or a loved one are struggling with addiction and thinking about alcohol or drug treatment, it’s important to speak with your doctor to discuss treatment options and other co-occurring conditions, if you have them. Medical professionals can provide a diagnosis of a substance use disorder (SUD) and help you determine if long-term rehab is right for you.
Medical and mental health professionals use the criteria in the American Psychiatric Association’s Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM-5) to diagnose substance use disorders (SUDs).8 This diagnosis may help you decide if short- or long-term drug rehab is a better option. If you or a loved one have experienced 2 or more of the following criteria in the past 12 months, consider seeking help:8
- Taking a substance in larger amounts or more often than before
- Inability to reduce or stop using a substance even if you have a desire to do so
- Spending excessive time getting a substance, using it, and recovering from its effects
- Experiencing cravings, or an intense desire to use the substance, particularly if you’re in an environment where you’ve obtained or used the substance before
- Inability to meet obligations at work, home, or school because of substance use
- No longer participating in activities and hobbies you once used to because of substance use
- Continuing to use the substance even if you’re having social or interpersonal issues related to or worsened by the effects of the substance
- Continuing to use the substance even if you have a persistent or chronic physical or mental health condition that is likely due to substance use
- Continuing substance use even if it’s dangerous to do so
- Experiencing tolerance, which means you need more of the substance to feel the same effects as before
- Experiencing withdrawal symptoms when you reduce or stop using the substance, which can lead to relapse
Statistics show that addiction is like other chronic diseases when it comes to relapse. In fact, relapse rates for addiction are 40% to 60%, which is like those of other chronic conditions such as heart disease, asthma, or diabetes.2 Since relapse is often a part of the recovery process, it’s important to seek appropriate treatment for adequate lengths of time if you feel you may be struggling with addiction.
Types of Substances Treated at Long-Term Rehab
Several types of addiction treatment programs exist to treat addiction to various substances, including long-term alcohol rehab or drug rehab. Some of the more common substances treated in long-term rehab centers include:
Facilities take varied approaches to addiction recovery programs, so it is important to choose a program that meets your needs in addition to the substances used. Programs that treat certain groups of people, like women or LGBTQ+, are available. Speak to a person at the long-term rehab center to find out how the facility approaches treatment.
What to Expect in Long-Term Rehabs
Treatment programs for those in long-term inpatient rehab will vary depending on the needs of the individual, but often include:
- Supervised detoxification phase.
- Group and/or one-on-one behavioral therapy.
- Aftercare planning.
Detox is an important first phase of recovery because it can help manage the uncomfortable and potentially serious, acute withdrawal symptoms associated with stopping substance use.1 During detox, people are given space to focus on ridding their bodies of the substance without having to participate in other forms of treatment or physical exercise.3
After detox, the treatment team will assess a person’s needs to help determine what type of treatment is best for the next phase of the recovery process.
Cost of Long-Term Rehab Centers
If you’re looking for addiction treatment, the process may feel overwhelming, especially when it comes to cost. Long-term rehabs typically cost more than outpatient or short-term rehabs since a person stays in the facility, stays longer, and there may be more comprehensive services offered.
The good news is that insurance often covers a significant portion of rehab costs, and many facilities offer payment options like financing, grants, and scholarships. Other factors that may affect the cost of rehab include:
- Location: traveling for treatment may cost more than going to a facility that’s local. For some, a facility close to home will allow for continued support from friends and family. For others, a program further away may help a person recover without influences related to past substance misuse.
- Amenities: facilities that offer more luxury amenities will likely cost more than those that do not.
- Medication: if you require medication during your stay at long-term inpatient rehab, there may be additional costs to help with safely managing your medications.
- Length of stay: the longer your stay, the more cost involved. You may not know how long your stay will be at the beginning of treatment, but continue working with your treatment team to ensure you receive the proper level of care that works with your financial situation.
Treatments Used at Long-Term Rehab Centers
A person may enter other types of treatment following detox depending on the level of care determined by treatment professionals. This can include long-term treatment in a residential facility, which may offer several services to facilitate a person’s ongoing recovery process:
- Individual and/or group therapy: meet with a primary therapist on a regular basis to help develop a treatment plan, connect with others who understand the struggles associated with addiction, and identify behavior patterns and history that may have contributed to substance use.
- Family therapy: to help heal relationships affected by addiction and understand the recovery process.
- Medication management: depending on the substances used and co-occurring disorders, the treatment team may feel medication is important as part of the recovery process. Combining medication with therapy can help treat the whole person.4
- Contingency management: incentive-based programs to help encourage abstinence and staying in treatment.5
- 12-step facilitation therapy: participate in 12-step self-help groups to help encourage abstinence from misused substances.6
- Amenities: some long-term rehabs offer additional amenities to help with recovery like yoga, meditation, art classes, etc.
As the treatment portion of a person’s recovery ends, it’s important to have an aftercare plan to help maintain recovery, sobriety, and prevent relapse. The treatment facility and its team of professionals will help a person develop an aftercare plan, which may include additional programs and services to continue after inpatient treatment. This may include attending support groups, continuing therapy, and other resources to support the individual.
Find a Long-Term Rehab Near Me
If you or a loved one are ready to get treatment for a substance use disorder, you can start by seeking the support of a trusted friend, loved one, and your doctor. Since there are several factors to consider, it may be helpful to contact the facility you’re interested in to discuss treatment options and services.
You can also call American Addiction Centers (AAC) at to learn about our nationwide long-term rehab facilities for substance use disorders. Our team of compassionate admissions navigators understands where you are at and can quickly help you check insurance coverage at AAC facilities, answer questions about treatment, and provide additional addiction resources. Each call is confidential. We are available 24/7 to make sure you find the treatment you need.