One of the most fateful mistakes a newly sober individual can make is returning home directly after inpatient treatment. While our specific treatment program puts a heavy emphasis on family involvement, it typically takes months of intensive therapeutic care to successfully alter detrimental family functioning. It is not uncommon for the parents of young addicts and alcoholics to heavily enable their children without even recognizing that their behavior is harmful. Enmeshment (a lack of personal boundaries, in simple terms) is another common issue in families that have been afflicted with addiction. In order for a recovering addict to safely return home, all of these underlying familial issues must be adequately addressed and treated.
It has been repeatedly proven that if an addict returns home immediately following inpatient rehab, he or she will likely return to using. This relapse, of course, will not exclusively result from an exacerbation of injurious family functioning. In most cases, the addict will completely lack the foundation he needs to transition back into independent, drug-free living. Look at it this way – the main goal of rehab is to therapeutically address all underlying causes of addiction, so that long-term sobriety is possible.
The goal of long-term aftercare is designed to ensure that the newly sober individual learns how to live a recovered life.
The ‘Florida Model’ of Addiction Recovery
What has become nationally known as ‘The Florida Model’ of addiction recovery has also been proven the most successful method of comprehensive treatment, and includes four basic levels of care:
- Medical detox
- Inpatient drug rehab
- Sober living housing
- Continued aftercare
Detox is designed to medically stabilize an addict or alcoholic, providing necessary medical care and administering medications to prevent potentially serious side effects of withdrawal. Detox is not treatment! While many detox facilities do bring in AA meetings and hold sparse group sessions, it is absolutely crucial that those attempting to maintain sobriety do not confuse this stabilization period for adequate treatment. Once an individual has completed detox, he or she will transfer directly to a recommended inpatient rehab, where he or she will reside for between 30 and 90 days (90 days is always encouraged, for it takes 3 months to thoroughly amend a habitual behavior). During inpatient, an individual will undergo daily group therapy sessions and regular one-on-one sessions with an assigned therapist. All underlying causes of addiction will be brought to light and properly addressed, and any co-occurring disorders will be adequately treated.
A Step-Down Process Designed for Maintained Sobriety
Once a patient is cleared to graduate from inpatient, he or she will transition into a sober living house. The main goal of sober living housing is to help a recovering addict make the final transition into fully independent living. Most men and women who spend years of their lives intoxicated do not come readily equipped with the tools and skills necessary to facing life in sobriety. Sober living offers additional support while maintaining accountability, structure, and personal responsibility. At this stage in their recovery, clients will be expected to get and maintain a job, become financially independent, and participate in house chores and meetings will abiding by house rules. This structure is often found to be essential. After 6 or 9 months in a sober living house, a client will typically be ready to live completely on his or her own. However, addiction recovery is a lifelong journey – not one that comes to an abrupt end after roughly a year. Chronic diseases require continued maintenance, after all. For this reason, we have developed a unique and thorough program of continuous aftercare, ensuring that each and every one of our clients has access to the unceasing support that he may require.
Next Chapter – Our Program of Aftercare
First of all, we firmly believe that integration of a 12-step program of recovery is crucial to long-term sobriety, thus we encourage all of clients to maintain active involvement in Alcoholics Anonymous (or a similar fellowship). If a client is in need of additional therapeutic care, we will set him up with a therapist who specializes in the realm that requires the most attention. If a client is on medication for a co-occurring psychological disorder, we will set him up with a psychiatrist. We invite our alumni back to our inpatient facility on occasion, either to speak or to listen in on a 12-step meeting that is being brought to the clinical office. Alumni events will also be a major part of continued aftercare – keep on the look out for future happenings!
Finally, we offer MAP Recovery Support to all of our prior clients. This has proven to be an essential element of continuous aftercare, and is an invaluable tool when it comes to the preservation of sobriety after rehab.
Post-discharge recovery support is not available through all treatment facilities – we pride ourselves on keeping in close contact with all of our clients long after they graduate from our inpatient program. MAP is comprised of a network of experienced addiction specialists. Once treatment has concluded, these specialists maintain regular contact with each client, checking up weekly and offering any necessary guidance and support. For more information on MAP Recovery Support