How long does drug rehab take?

When people say they are "going to rehab" for drug abuse, how long does it usually take? Are all programs the same?

asked 21 Feb '12, 19:24

greenpea's gravatar image

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Drug rehabilitation (rehab) describes the medical and/or psychotherapeutic treatment of one’s substance addiction. Inpatient treatment is the most common form of rehab, which often includes a detoxification (detox) regiment. To prevent future relapse, elements from rehab are practiced for the rest of a recovering addict’s life, like attending help meetings such as Narcotics Anonymous (NA).

(25 Feb '12, 12:30) Jack ♦


Drug Addiction

Length of drug rehab may depend on the severity of the drug addiction, including the typical dosage, length of addiction, and drug abused.


Drug Rehab

Drug rehab programs vary in duration depending on what the recovering addict needs.


Drug Treatment

Drug rehab is an important element of treatment, as it helps recovering addicts learn how to become a part of society without the influence of drugs.

A general rule is that drug rehab takes as long as it takes, which varies from person to person. One addict may only need a family member to point out their problem in the early stages, while another may need a year of living in a residential facility.

Inpatient (preferred) or outpatient rehabilitation after detox will include intensive education about the effects of alcohol and other drugs, one-on-one therapy with an addiction specialist, group therapy, introduction to outside resources (such as Alcoholics and Narcotics Anonymous), relapse prevention considerations, and the fellowship of other people in early recovery. Primary treatment can last from a couple of weeks to however long the addict and rehab staff agree is needed.

Secondary treatment often involves aftercare programs at the primary facility, halfway house stays (which may or may not include therapy), and attendance at fellowships such as AA and NA. Some may attend such fellowships for the rest of their lives, technically extending their drug rehab for as long as they live.


answered 22 Feb '12, 12:22

Meet281's gravatar image

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When people say "going to rehab", they are most likely referring to an inpatient program, not aftercare programs (like AA or NA). Inpatient programs usually range from a few days to a couple months.


Drug rehab programs vary in length depending on the available resources, the cooperation of the addict, and the length of the addiction. Detox can last as little as three days. Further treatment in a longer-term facility is recommended after leaving detox. On average, rehab programs last one to three months.


answered 22 Feb '12, 12:31

McKail's gravatar image

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Asked: 21 Feb '12, 19:24

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Last updated: 16 Apr '12, 17:30