Entering drug rehab can be one of the most rewarding decisions that a person with a drug or drinking problem can make for themselves and their loved ones.
One of the most common questions asked about rehab is: How long does a treatment program last? And how long do you need to stay in rehab to reap its full benefits?
The amount of time a person spends in a rehab program may vary depending on a number of personal factors.
Average Length Of Addiction Rehab Programs
The average length of a treatment program for substance use disorder can differ by the type of treatment program you are seeking, as well as other factors.
Average length of stay by the level of care:
- detoxification (detox): three to seven days
- inpatient treatment: 28 to 30 days
- residential treatment: 30 to 60 days
- partial hospitalization: up to four weeks
- intensive outpatient: 90+ days
The most common rehab programs last 30 days for a short-term inpatient rehab program.
After this, it’s common for people to continue their substance abuse treatment on an outpatient level for a greater period of time. Long-term rehab is also offered by some treatment centers.
What Is Considered Long-Term Rehab?
Long-term rehab is often designed for people with a history of chronic addiction and those who have complex needs during the treatment process.
- long history of drug use
- history of relapse
- difficulty maintaining long-term sobriety
- co-occurring disorders
- history of complex trauma
- having an unstable home environment
- severe protracted withdrawal symptoms
A longer treatment program may be suitable for people who have struggled to maintain recovery outside of a structured treatment program, or those who lack a strong support system at home.
What Are Examples Of Long-Term Drug Rehab Programs?
A long-term treatment program may refer to either a long-term residential program, or an outpatient program that extends beyond a one-month or 90-day program.
Common examples of long-term rehab programs include:
- long-term residential programs
- sober living homes
- halfway houses
What Are The Benefits Of Staying In Rehab Longer?
A longer stay in rehab may be recommended for someone who has struggled to maintain their recovery following previous treatment stays/attempts.
Extended programs can offer an opportunity for someone to further develop skills learned in treatment. For instance, supportive coping skills and relapse prevention.
Someone with complex needs — for instance, a person with addiction who is homeless, has a criminal record, or who has a severe mental illness — may also benefit from extended support.
A longer program can help some clients develop the skills and access resources they need to build a healthy, sustainable, and fulfilling future in recovery.
Extended rehab programs for addiction may offer:
- housing assistance
- job/employment assistance
- vocational training
- skills development classes/training
- access to school/higher education opportunities
- access to support groups
What Are The Benefits Of Short-Term Rehab?
A 30-day program for drug or alcohol addiction can be, for many, a suitable amount of time to reach medical stabilization and prepare to continue treatment on an outpatient level.
Short-term drug or alcohol rehab programs may be more economically feasible for some people with addiction, and it can offer the time a person needs to be away from triggers at home.
After finishing a rehab program, it’s common for clients to continue seeing an outpatient counselor, psychiatrist, medical doctor, and attend addiction recovery support groups.
What Factors Can Affect How Long You Should Stay In Treatment?
A number of factors can determine the length of time someone is recommended to stay in treatment, whether at an inpatient treatment facility or in outpatient treatment.
Factors to consider might include:
- duration and severity of your illness
- prior unsuccessful treatment attempts
- dual diagnosis
- your progress during treatment
- insurance coverage
Call To Find Free Or Low-Cost Drug Rehab Programs Today
Finding affordable, quality treatment may be just a phone call away. To find the best drug or alcohol abuse rehab center near you, call our helpline today.
Published on September 14, 2022
Free Rehab Centers aims to provide only the most current, accurate information in regards to addiction and addiction treatment, which means we only reference the most credible sources available.
These include peer-reviewed journals, government entities and academic institutions, and leaders in addiction healthcare and advocacy. Learn more about how we safeguard our content by viewing our editorial policy.
- U.S. National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA) — Types of Treatment Programs
- U.S. National Library of Medicine: NCBI Bookshelf — A Guide to Substance Abuse Services for Primary Care Clinicians
- Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMSA) — Behavioral Health Treatments and Services