Aftercare Support

Posted: September 30, 2020
Updated: February 11, 2021

Aftercare support is a vital part of the alcoholism recovery process. It helps individuals transition from one stage to another as seamlessly as possible.

Some people fear that once they leave rehab, they’ll be out on their own. But the truth is when you leave any type of care behind, you’re never left without support.

Keep reading to find out more about the best types of alcohol rehab aftercare.

What is Aftercare Support?

Aftercare support is an integral component of comprehensive drug rehabilitation. It is the last phase of recovery. Aftercare comprises services that help recovering addicts readjust to normal day-to-day activities. They include:

  • Individual and family counseling
  • Medications to reduce cravings
  • Treatment of psychiatric and other medical conditions
  • Vocational training

Aftercare support begins once you have completed earlier stages of treatment. It can last a year or even longer.  It helps recovering individuals:

  • Maintain sobriety
  • Reconnect with family members, friends, and society
  • Continue or find a job
  • Acquire new skills
  • Overcome stigma associated with drug use

Types of Aftercare Support

Life after rehab is hard work. Individuals need to follow certain guidelines that may seem scary and unfamiliar. Yet it’s what helps maintain a structured lifestyle while reducing the risk of relapse.

There are many facilities that offer aftercare programs. Some provide continued therapy and support groups for former patients. Others may also offer medical evaluations and even sober-living arrangements.

Read on to learn about some of the aftercare support resources available, and how they can help.

Counseling Sessions

In almost all inpatient facilities, counseling and therapy sessions are held several times a week. When individuals leave rehab, it becomes vital that they continue these sessions.

It’s usually recommended that patients attend once a week. Then, the sessions can be reduced to once every two weeks.

A therapist will then assess the patient’s recovery level. If it’s progressing at a steady and promising rate, monthly sessions can be recommended.

Support Groups

Support groups are a highly beneficial part of the rehab aftercare service. They’re open to anyone going through the program. Sometimes family members take part in the discussions.

Some support groups use the 12-steps recovery. It’s a program that was devised primarily by Alcoholics Anonymous.

Other groups offer customizable approaches to help you find what works best for you. They focus more on self-empowering, individual-based therapy.

Find the program you feel more comfortable with and stick to it. Studies show that support groups are highly effective when they’re consistent.

There are several benefits to regularly attending a support group. 

  • They give you the freedom to share your thoughts and fears.
  • It’s a judgment-free environment.
  • Shared experiences mean everyone feels heard and understood.
  • Provides a sense of stability and support.
  • It’s a great source of information and friendly advice.

5 Tips for an Effective Rehab Aftercare Support

For aftercare services to work properly, try these tips.

  1. Plan ahead for healthy and encouraging living arrangements. It’ll allow you to reorganize your living routine and schedule from day to day.
  2. Find and attend support groups. In the beginning, you can try attending more than one to see which one feels right for you.
  3. Try out new hobbies. It’s a great way to motivate yourself.
  4. Train yourself to effectively identify and take control of negative urges.
  5. Create a personal support system. It should be the one you turn to when you get an impulse to drink.

A Final Note

The first step in recovering from alcoholism is making the effort to go to a treatment facility. This is where some spend 30 days, others 90. Either way, it’s a small amount of time compared to the lifetime that follows. Having to relearn how to live your life after rehab can be scary. But with aftercare support, it can be easily managed.

Just remember that you’re part of a big network of friends and supporters. Anytime you need it, help will be there.

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