How Long is Alcohol Rehab?

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There are many different variables that impact the duration of alcohol rehab. Rehab for alcoholics can be delivered in an inpatient or outpatient setting, affecting how long treatment lasts.  Whether or not someone begins rehab for alcohol abuse with supervised medical detoxification also influences the treatment time frame. Read on to learn more about what to expect from inpatient or outpatient alcohol rehab and find out how to connect with compassionate and effective treatment.

Alcohol Rehab Timeline

It’s beneficial for anyone looking to engage with alcohol addiction treatment to develop an awareness of the expected timeline. Here’s how treatment for alcohol use disorder unfolds:

Intake and initial assessment – 1 to 2 days

The recovery journey begins with a comprehensive assessment by a team of medical professionals and counselors. This step enables the development of a personalized and targeted treatment plan.

Detoxification – 3 to 7 days

Detox is the first phase of physical recovery, during which the body eliminates alcohol and toxins. Unsupervised alcohol withdrawal can be life-threatening. Detox at alcohol rehab streamlines the process, with medications and continuous care mitigating withdrawal symptoms, cravings, complications, and relapse.

Inpatient or outpatient treatment – 30 to 90 days or more

Following detox, the person progresses to the primary treatment phase, which can be in an inpatient or outpatient setting. This period involves intensive therapy sessions, both in groups and individually, to address the psychological aspects of addiction. The duration depends on the structure and specifics of the program as well as individual progress and needs.

Sober living or extended care – 3 to 12 months or more

For many people, recovery extends beyond the initial rehab program through extended care options like sober living communities or ongoing outpatient therapy. This phase supports the transition back into daily life, focusing on relapse prevention and the development of healthy coping mechanisms.

How Long is Outpatient Rehab for Alcohol?

Outpatient alcohol rehab offers access to a range of treatments like those found in inpatient rehab but with less intensity. People attend weekday therapy sessions, returning home or to a sober living community overnight. Outpatient options for alcohol rehab include:

  • Traditional outpatient programs: These programs are the least intensive, typically requiring people to attend treatment sessions for a few hours each week. They are suitable for those requiring minimal support to maintain their recovery while managing daily responsibilities.
  • IOPs: IOP (intensive outpatient programs) demand more time commitment than standard outpatient programs, with participants meeting several days a week for a total of 9 to 20 hours. This option is designed for those who require a more structured treatment environment but still need the flexibility to return home each day.
  • PHPs: PHPs (partial hospitalization programs) are the most intensive form of outpatient care. These programs usually require a minimum of 20 hours of participation per week and are tailored for individuals who need significant support and medical monitoring but not 24-hour care.

How long does alcohol rehab take could be anywhere from a few weeks to several months in an outpatient setting, due to the reduced intensity of treatment.

How Long is Inpatient Rehab for Alcohol?

Inpatient alcohol rehabilitation offers a comprehensive, 24-hour care environment for individuals staying within the facility. This type of treatment is characterized by its structured approach, incorporating a blend of individual and group counseling sessions, a variety of therapeutic modalities, nutritional guidance, physical activities, and holistic interventions to support recovery.

Inpatient programs typically come in three main durations: 30-day, 60-day, and 90-day programs, each designed to cater to different levels of addiction severity and individual patient needs:

  • 30-day alcohol rehab: These are often seen as an introduction to rehab for those with milder addictions or as a starting point for long-term treatment plans. They provide a solid foundation for recovery, focusing on detoxification, initial counseling, and strategy planning for aftercare.
  • 60-day alcohol rehab: Offering a more extended period of care, 60-day programs allow for deeper exploration of the issues underpinning alcohol use disorder. People have more time to engage with therapy sessions, develop coping techniques, and start practicing sober living habits within a supportive environment.
  • 90-day alcohol rehab: Recommended for those with severe or chronic addictions, 90-day programs provide the most comprehensive opportunity for recovery. The extended duration supports thorough detoxification, extensive therapy, life skills training, and relapse prevention planning.

Despite these structured time frames, the exact duration of inpatient care can still vary based on individual assessments and progress, as well as the specific factors influencing each person’s recovery journey. Additionally, the cost of inpatient treatment can be higher than outpatient alternatives, and insurance coverage for these programs varies significantly. Some insurers may restrict inpatient care to particular situations, limit the number of days they cover, or prefer outpatient treatment due to cost considerations.

How Long Should an Alcoholic Stay in Rehab?

There is no universal timeframe for how long someone should stay in rehab. Although longer treatment outcomes are often associated with superior outcomes, everyone is unique and all addictions are different.

The most important thing for someone who is addicted to alcohol is to engage with a supervised medical detox program and at least some form of treatment to address the psychological side of alcoholism.

Get Effective Alcohol Rehab at Ohio Recovery Centers

Alcohol rehab at Ohio Recovery Centers is delivered in an outpatient setting, enabling you to fulfill your everyday obligations while engaging with weekday therapy sessions at our rehab in Cincinnati, OH.

Our supervised medical detox program can help you address alcohol withdrawal with medications and continuous care to streamline the process.

During ongoing outpatient treatment, you can continue with medication-assisted treatment. You can also access a range of talk therapies, motivational therapies, and counseling alongside holistic interventions. Aftercare may involve therapy sessions and support groups to prevent relapse.Call 877-679-2132 for effective alcohol rehab in Ohio.

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Joseph Gilmore

Joseph Gilmore has been working in the addiction industry for half a decade and has been writing about addiction and substance abuse treatment during that time. He has experience working for facilities all across the country. Connect with Joe on LinkedIn.
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Christopher Glover CDCA

My name is Christopher Glover, and I am from Cincinnati, Ohio. I am currently in school and working to grow in competence to better support our community. As a recovering individual I know the struggles that you or a loved one can go through and that there is help for anything you may be struggling with.

The hardest part is asking for help and we are here as a team to best support you and your decision to start your journey towards a better future. Connect with Chris on LinkedIn

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Amanda Kuchenberg PRS CDCA

I recently joined Ohio Community Health Recovery Centers as a Clinical Case Manager. I am originally from Wisconsin but settled in the Cincinnati area in my early 20s.  My career started in the fashion industry but quickly changed as I searched to find my drive and passion through helping others who struggle with addiction. 

As someone who is also in recovery, I wanted to provide hope, share lived experience, and support others on their journey.  I currently have my Peer Recovery Support Supervision Certification along with my CDCA and plan to continue my education with University of Cincinnati so I can continue to aid in the battle against substance addiction. Connect with Amanda on LinkedIn.

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Patrick McCamley LCDC III

 Patrick McCamley (Clinical Therapist) is a Cincinnati native who has worked in substance use disorder/co-occurring mental health disorder treatment since 2019. Patrick received his bachelors degree in psychology from University of Cincinnati in 2021 and received his LCDC III (Licensed Chemical Dependency Counselor) license from the Ohio Chemical Dependency Professionals Board in 2022. Patrick has worked in Clinical Operations, Clinical Case Management, and Clinical Therapy throughout his career.

Patrick has tremendous empathy and compassion for the recovery community, being in recovery himself since 2018. Patrick is uniquely qualified to be helpful because of the specific combination of his academic background and his own experience in recovery.

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Bill Zimmerman CDCA

Bill Zimmerman is a Greater Cincinnati Area native who has worked in substance use disorder/co-occurring mental health disorder treatment since 2018. Bill received his (Chemical Dependency Counselor Assistant) license from the Ohio Chemical Dependency Professionals Board in 2020.

Bill has worked in Clinical Operations in both support and supervision, and Program facilitating and 12 step recovery support during his career. Bill has a passion for the recovery community, having been in recovery himself since 1982. Connect with Bill on LinkedIn

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Taylor Lilley CDCA, PRS

Growing up in Louisiana with addiction running rampant on both sides of my family. A life away from drugs and alcohol seemed impossible for someone like me. I remember what it was like sitting across from someone thinking there is no way they could ever understand what I was going through.

Sharing my experience offers a credibility and a certain type of trust with clients that only someone who has walked down this road can illustrate. To immerse myself further into the field of addiction, I am currently studying at Cincinnati State for Human and Social Services.  I hope I never forget where I came from, if I can do it, so can you!

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Thomas Hunter LSW

Hello my name is Thomas Hunter. I was born and raised in Cincinnati, Ohio. I am a licensed social worker.In my scope of practice I have worked in the areas of mental health and recovery for thirty years. The clients I have worked with in my career have ranged in age from seven to seventy.

I strive each day to serve my purpose of helping those in need and I believe I do so by utilizing all of my experiences to accomplish my goal of supporting those who desire to establish their sobriety and maintain it in their recovery. Connect with Thomas on LinkedIn.

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Mary D.Porter,LICDC

 My name is Mary D. Porter. I received my Masters of Social Work in 2008 from The University of Cincinnati. I received My Licensed Independent Chemical Dependency Counselor Licensure in 2001. I retired from The Department of Veteran Affairs Medical Center on April 14, 2014. Currently, I am the Associate Clinical Director for The Ohio Community Health Recovery Centers in Cincinnati.. Due to the fourth wave of the Opioid Epidemic in 2019,  I decided to enter back into the workforce to assist the addicted population.

The overdoses were astounding and I wanted to help.  I consider myself  to be an advocate for the addicted population. My compassion, resilience, empathy, wisdom, knowledge, experience and  love I have for this forgotten population goes beyond words. I consider what I do for the addicted population as a calling versus a “career,” because I too was once an “addict and alcoholic.” Today I am 45.5 years alcohol and substance free.

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Ben Lemmon LCDC III

Hello, my name is Ben Lemmon, and I’m the Vice President and Clinical Director at Ohio Community Health Recovery Centers. I’ve been working in the addiction and mental health field since 2013 and decided to enter the field after overcoming my own challenges with addiction.

When I first meet a client, I always explain to them that the reason we are meeting is because they are not capable of obtaining or maintaining sobriety, and my goal is to create a person that can maintain sobriety. I believe a person’s personality is made up of their thoughts, feelings and actions and my job is to help clients identify the thoughts, feelings and actions that have them disconnected from recovery and provide them with the tools to live a healthy and happy life. Connect with Ben on LinkedIn