REHAB / TREATMENT...
30 DAY VS. EXTENDED CARE MODEL?
The percentage of addicts that relapse after completing a 30 day program can be disheartening for those considering treatment.
A drug and alcohol treatment program requires a substantial commitment, but is it worth investing the time, energy, and money if the relapse percentage is so high?
It’s understandable that a person seeking treatment would have these doubts and concerns. However, there is one critical element that can greatly decrease the probability of relapse – the length of the program.
Experts agree, a 30 day treatment model is an acute model, which is not clinically appropriate for treating a progressive, chronic disease. In fact, it can actually hinder long-term recovery outcomes.
After a relapse, the person who was once hopeful about recovery often feels a sense of shame and guilt. After learning how to remain sober but lacking the ability execute, they feel like a failure. But how to recover isn’t the problem; it’s following through that’s challenging.
Each time they relapse, their sense of failure deepens and the hope of recovering diminishes. This can lead to the feeling that they are not worthy of a sober, healthy, happy life, which is clearly not the case.
Permanent sobriety is absolutely possible, and it is something that can be achieved by anyone suffering from this illness – providing they fully understand what is required to recover, are willing to follow direction, and can take the necessary actions.
4 REASONS WHY EXTENDED CARE IS MORE EFFECTIVE
Thankfully, more and more drug and alcohol recovery programs are moving to a minimum 90 day extended care model with sober and transitional living as opposed to the conventional 30 day model. Simply put, they offer significantly lower relapse rates and are far more effective in producing long term sobriety for the following reasons:
Substance abuse can cause significant damage to the body and the mind. A longer stay allows for more time to heal in a safe, structured environment.
A longer stay will allow for changes in a residents belief system and thought-life which translates to better decision making when they transition back to normal life.
The daily habits required for long term recovery start to become automatic with more time in treatment. The addict develops a sense of what it looks and feels like to live a sober life.
12 Step Completion
They have sufficient time to work through all of the steps – instead of just the first few. In addition to getting through the step process, a longer stay provides time to practice the guiding principles while integrating into a healthy 12 step fellowship – both of which are necessary for successful long term recovery.
Many people are confused about and what is actually required to achieve long term sobriety.WRL 12 STEP Team
Meetings are not the program.
The Twelve Steps are "THE PROGRAM OF RECOVERY."
Contrary to popular belief, twelve step meetings are not the solution to alcoholism and drug addiction, and they are not intended to be a form of group therapy. Although they do offer some therapeutic value and the fellowship is important to recovery, meetings alone will not produce the personality change sufficient to bring about recovery from addiction.
Typically, an addict or alcoholic gains a basic understanding of the 12-Steps in treatment, and their curriculum will often include some instruction on the first few steps. But as with any program, it’s effectiveness and success depends on it’s completion and application. Although the principles can be learned cognitively, in order to be effective they must be applied.
Application of the 12-steps requires serious discovery into the depths of the addicts personality, an unlearning of old destructive habits and thinking patterns, and the learning and practice of new healthy ones. This level of commitment, self exploration, and discipline goes against the nature of an addict or an alcoholic. In fact, it usually requires a high degree of accountability and support for the addict to stay engaged, complete the process, and make it a way of life.
Permanent sobriety requires a transformation of consciousness. The book Alcoholics Anonymous describes it as a spiritual awakening; a personality change sufficient to bring about recovery from addiction coupled with a profound alteration in our reaction to life.
The 12 steps will produce such a change, but it requires work, self sacrifice, and a strong commitment to a new way of life.
Why people struggle in 12 Step Recovery
Typically, people who struggle with the program have not gone through the steps and are trying to stay sober on meetings and the fellowship alone. It has been repeatedly proven that for most addicts and alcoholics, this approach to long term recovery is ineffective. Many will not be able to stay sober, and those who do will be extremely uncomfortable in sobriety – which over time leads them back to a drink or a drug.
As with any program of recovery, it must go beyond the elimination of drugs or alcohol. Removing the substance from the body and the lifestyle leaves a void that needs to be filled.
The WeRECOVER LIFE program utilizes the 12 step process to fill this emptiness with healthy thoughts (fueled by a change in perspective), contrary actions (based on principles), and daily practices that promote and improve self awareness. These new disciplines and habits combined with a focus on helping others, will teach the addict how to be comfortable in recovery and gain a sense of fulfillment with his or her place in the world.
3 Most Common Causes for relapse
Based on our experience with hundreds of alcoholics and addicts, here are the top three reasons why people in a 12 step program fail to recover:
Trouble following direction
Didn't work ALL the steps
Not helping others
Real recovery is a long journey that requires a to a new way of
A longer stay Doesn't Mean it Costs more
It would be reasonable to assume that a ninety day program would cost three times as much as a thirty day program. Surprisingly, many extended care recovery programs cost about the same as thirty day programs. The primary reason for this is a shift in the drug and alcohol recovery industry.
When insurance companies started covering drug and alcohol treatment, many healthcare companies were quick to create recovery centers as a way to take advantage of the insurance payouts. We’re not saying that these recovery centers aren’t helpful or that the counselors aren’t effective, but most of them are only thirty days in length and charge a substantial cost.
Fortunately, private individuals in recent years began developing recovery centers with programs based on what addicts need, rather than what is billable to insurance companies. The result is a longer program with lower rates.
Over time, these programs developed outcomes, and it become clear that a longer continuum of care significantly lowered the chance of relapse.
We help our residents become self supporting
One of our program goals is to teach our residents how to be self supporting. In fact, we expect them to begin contributing to their treatment costs as soon as possible, providing it does not compromise their recovery program.
Although “getting & staying sober” should always be the number one priority, the transition to building a life requires that residents assume full responsibility for their lives – which is part of what it means to recover.
We offer enough structure to be helpful, but not so much that it removes the very necessary element of personal responsibility.
We provide a safe environment to help people feel comfortable being transparent and honest – both of which are essential to change.
Alcoholics and addicts are usually great starters – but they have difficulty finishing. We help them stay committed to their goals.
Having a strong support system is important in recovery, and it can literally make the difference between success & failure.
We help residents build a resume, teach them how to interview, and provide opportunities for employment when possible.
We support and assist residents with the return to school and their educational goals and ambitions.
We teach residents basic money management skills to encourage and foster financial independence.