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What is an alcohol rehabilitation program?

Many people suffering from the disease of alcoholism do not seek the help they need because they don’t know what to expect at alcohol rehabilitation. Despite the sometimes terrifying and devastating consequences of alcoholism, many alcoholics choose to continue to drink because it is familiar to them.  For them, the life they know is less scary than going to an alcohol rehabilitation program and getting help. So what is alcohol rehabilitation, exactly? What can you expect from an alcohol rehabilitation program?

Alcohol rehabilitation is a place to receive treatment for dependency on alcohol. The purpose of an alcohol rehabilitation program is to treat the physical addiction to alcohol and help you build the skills for a healthy and productive life.

Step 1- Medical Detox

The first part of an alcohol rehabilitation program is usually a safe medical detox.  This portion of treatment aims to make you comfortable while your body recovers from being physically dependent on alcohol. This is typically a 5-10 day process depending on your specific needs. When you enter a detox facility, the staff will take a medical history and ask you about your alcohol use. Be honest! Medical professionals at an alcohol rehabilitation detox have a lot of experience dealing with addiction, and they have likely heard it all before. They need to know the extent of your alcohol use so they can design a detox program that is right for you.  If they do not know exactly how much you drink and how long you have been abusing alcohol, they will not be able to prescribe the correct type and quantity of medication to make you comfortable during the process or be able to ensure that you are safe. Detox from alcohol can be life-threatening. It is one of the most dangerous drugs to detox from.

Step 2-In-patient treatment

When people ask “What is an alcohol rehabilitation program?” they are usually referring to this phase of treatment. After detox, you will likely be sent to and inpatient program that, on average, lasts 30-90 days. You will sleep at the alcohol rehabilitation housing and attend treatment groups during the day. Alcohol rehabilitation programs vary widely in terms of the treatments they offer during inpatient treatment. Most offer traditional treatments like counseling, psychotherapy, group therapy, 12-step support groups and family therapy. Some alcohol rehabilitation programs also offer music therapy, art therapy, or drama. Holistic treatment centers usually incorporate practices that treat mind, body, and spirit such as acupuncture, yoga, meditation, aromatherapy, equine therapy, and Tai-Chi. Regardless of the type of alcohol rehabilitation program you attend, your days in inpatient treatment are likely to be highly structured. Most alcohol rehabilitation programs provide three meals a day and down time for personal reflection and meditation.

After inpatient treatment, most alcohol rehabilitation programs will offer some sort of continuing care such as outpatient treatment, alumni events, or regular contact through phone calls.  An alcohol rehabilitation program can be an invaluable process for someone trying to overcome an alcohol addiction.  Those that attend alcohol rehabilitation are more likely to achieve long-lasting recovery than those that try to beat alcoholism on their own.

If you or someone you know needs an alcohol rehabilitation program, call us at (800) 951-6135 or visit us online at

Where do calls go?

Calls to numbers on a specific treatment center listing will be routed to that treatment center. Additional calls will also be forwarded and returned by a quality treatment center within the USA.

Calls to any general helpline (non-facility specific 1-8XX numbers) for your visit will be answered by a licensed drug and alcohol rehab facility, a paid advertiser on

All calls are private and confidential.

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