In due course, drug and alcohol addiction elicit vital changes in a person's body and brain chemistry.
Consequently, one of the first priorities in addiction treatment is to detoxify the body from the toxins that have
accumulated in an addict's system.
While "all-embracing" detoxification can take months or perhaps years, licensed detox centers offer addicts
medical treatment, doctor prescribed medications, and counseling during the first crucial hours or days of
abstinence when withdrawal symptoms can be physically overwhelming, dangerous, and in some instances,
Misperceptions Made By Most Alcoholics and Drug Abusers
Virtually all addicts, when they are firmly entrenched in alcohol abuse, tell themselves that they can control
their abuse and that they can stop drinking any time they desire without professional treatment.
Sadly, a review of the addiction research literature does not corroborate this misconception.
In fact, from a statistical standpoint, the vast majority of addicts who refrain from taking drugs or alcohol
will be unsuccessful in their attempts to go through the detoxification process on their own.
Research into the outcomes of chronic addiction has demonstrated that important changes in the way the brain
functions remain in the addict's body long after he or she has stopped abusing alcohol or drugs.
Hence, one of the basic realities for basically all addicts is this: individuals who want to recover from
addiction need more than strong will power or self-control to accomplish successful recovery. In fact, self-detox
and self-recovery are particularly difficult for many reasons, including the following:
- The addict has to struggle with the cravings for the drug to which they are addicted.
- The addict has to cope with and manage the changes in the way the brain functions.
- The addict has to address and overcome the psychological, social, and the physical grounds for their
- The addict has to suffer through the uncomfortable and painful withdrawal symptoms that regularly take
place after abstaining from his or her drug of choice.
The Drug Rehab Process
The short-term goal of drug rehab is to assist the addict in getting through the detox and the withdrawal
process in a harm-free and uncomplicated manner while enhancing his or her capacity to start functioning in society
in a less irresponsible manner.
In the same way, the long-term objective of drug rehab is to help the individual achieve and sustain abstinence
from drug and alcohol use as he or she learns how to behave more successfully in society. Fortunately, competent
drug rehab frequently helps diminish the physical, the medical, and potentially, the psychological and the social
stumbling blocks associated with addiction.
How Long Does Drug Rehab Usually Take?
According to the substance abuse research, addicts who stay in rehab at least three months typically experience
more effective and successful results than addicts who remain in rehab fewer than three months.
Additionally, research demonstrates that addicts who go through medical detox programs to minimize the
discomfort of withdrawal but who do not receive additional outpatient rehabilitation, perform about the same in
terms of their continued addiction as addicts who never received any type of drug rehab.
Basic Issues About Inpatient Drug Rehabilitation
Inpatient drug rehab centers provide medical treatment, counseling, and support for addicts who want help for
their alcohol or drug addiction.
Not surprisingly, inpatients usually reside "on location" throughout the entire rehabilitation process. Although
the length of time necessary for rehab frequently varies, most inpatient rehab programs last between 28 and 30 days
and provide care every hour of every day.
According to scientific research, inpatient drug rehab, as opposed from outpatient rehab, historically results
in longer-lasting abstinence and more successful addiction recovery.
Fortunately, addicts who involve themselves in inpatient drug rehab and USE the new information, education, and
training they have received are better equipped to function more successfully in society and lead more responsible
drug and alcohol-free lives.
Outpatient Drug Rehab
It almost goes without saying that addicts who receive outpatient drug rehab do not reside at the drug rehab
Not unlike inpatient rehab, outpatient drug rehab programs provide long-term treatment that leads to abstinence
from alcohol and drugs.
Interestingly, many outpatient drug rehab programs can last months or perhaps years. From a more functional
perspective, however, outpatient drug rehab approaches employ a number of different techniques including
insight-oriented psychotherapy, the use of problem-solving groups, cognitive-behavioral therapy, and 12-step
Outpatient drug rehab programs differ in the intensity and in the kind of services that are offered. For
example, most low-intensity outpatient drug rehab programs provide basic alcoholism and drug abuse education and
Other outpatient drug rehab methods, such as intensive day treatment, conversely, can be very similar to
residential programs regarding the services that are offered and the level of success achieved, depending on the
addict's needs and capabilities.
In sum, the long-term objective of outpatient drug rehab is to help addicts quit their addiction so that they
are better equipped to function in society and lead more successful, responsible alcohol and drug-free lives.
Addiction Detox Treatment
The main goal of detox is to rid the body of the toxins that have accumulated due to drug abuse or alcoholism.
The first step in the detox process usually centers on helping the addict effectively and in an uncomplicated
manner deal with addiction withdrawals while his or her body is ridding itself of the alcohol and/or drugs that
If the withdrawal symptoms are severe, doctor-prescribed medications are usually administered. These medications
help diminish the painful and the potentially unsafe withdrawal symptoms.
Detox is performed in a number of different ways depending on where the treatment is undertaken.
For instance, most detox centers provide essential medical assistance that focuses on assisting the addict in
reducing severe physical withdrawal symptoms.
At the top end of the treatment continuum, a "comprehensive" detox center will not only help the addict manage
and control his or her withdrawal symptoms via doctor-prescribed medications, but it will also provide the
individual with counseling throughout the detox process so that he or she can start addressing the psychological
and foundational causes of the his or her addiction.
Once this demanding undertaking is started, the addict will then be more able to sustain abstinence and recovery
without experiencing a relapse.
An extensive drug detoxification program can be observed as consisting of three separate, but interrelated,
- Medical Detox. A medical practitioner will usually supervise and control the physical withdrawal symptoms,
thus helping the addict complete this stage with negligible complications in a harmless environment. It is
interesting to point out that comprehensive medical detoxification programs, contrary to what many people
think, can last several days.
- Physical Detox. After the addict's body and brain are no longer dependent on alcohol or drugs, he or she
needs to build up his or her physical health. A nutritionist and a physical therapist can be invaluable during
this stage, helping the addict develop strength and physical stamina and encouraging the addict to learn how to
eat a more balanced diet. The result of these efforts will hopefully enable the addict to continue through the
rest of the detoxification protocol.
- Emotional Detox. Due to the fact that the drug detox process can be exceptionally difficult on an addict's
psychological health, most rehab and detox centers provide addicts with counseling that lasts throughout the
total detoxification process. Since the dependency on drugs, however, has become such an essential part of the
addict's social, psychological, and mental life, these vital components of the addict's life need to be
addressed during counseling if recovery is to be successful and long-term.
Detox Centers and the Various Programs They Provide
A review of the many diverse programs that are available at various detox centers is simply amazing. Indeed, the
following represents a relatively extensive list of the many different program options that are available to
virtually ANY addict:
- Teen wilderness programs
- GLBT programs (programs for gays, lesbians, bisexuals, transgender persons, and transsexuals)
- Programs by various States and regions
- Sober living home programs
- Outpatient programs
- High-profile-people programs (programs that offer full amenities such as yoga and life coaching, an
enjoyable scenic view, daily massages, and a private room)
- Dual diagnosis programs (addicts who struggle with both substance abuse and mental illness)
- Teen Boot Camps
- 12-step programs (based on the Alcoholics Anonymous model)
- Young adults programs (ages 18 - 27)
- Women only programs
- Teen only programs (age 13 - 19)
- Holistic Approaches (with a focus customizing the treatment to the whole person).
- Men only programs
- Adolescent programs (age 12 - 20)
- Suboxone programs (programs using FDA approved medications for the treatment of opiate addiction)
- Non 12-step programs (treatment methodologies that present a non 12-step methodology including education,
FDA approved doctor prescribed medications, group therapy, cognitive behavioral therapy, and individual
- Self-help programs (including public awareness programs, resources for national self-help groups and
organizations, and help lines)
- Relapse prevention programs
- Faith-based treatment (for instance, Christian and Jewish-oriented therapies)
- Mature adult programs (over age 55)
- Specific programs for different drugs (heroine, alcohol, marijuana, crystal meth, cocaine, and prescription
drugs such as vicodin, darvocet, oxycontin, and percocet)
- Multiple disorder programs (for individuals with a number of "issues" such as, eating disorders, sex and
love addictions, alcoholism, and drug addiction)
Drug Detox Centers: How Much Does Residential Treatment Cost?
The cost for alcohol and drug addiction detox treatment is as wide-ranging as the number of different programs
that are available.
When considering the cost of a program, it is important to know specifically what is included in the program,
what will be added to your bill as a fee-for-service option, and what services your health insurance provider will
One point to keep in mind is the following: if you are seeking the best value for your treatment dollar, be
conscious of the fact that price can be consequential only when communicated in the context of success,
effectiveness, and quality.
It is also important to remember that insurance providers do not usually pay for "educational" approaches as
opposed to programs that are "medical." Fortunately, most of the educational programs accept the major credit
As a general guideline, it is worth emphasizing that the national average for a 30-day detox/rehab program costs
between $20,000 and $30,000. From a different perspective, one particular drug rehab program openly advertises that
it charges $10,000 for their 28-day program.
The following represents some of the self-payment costs that a number of rehab/detox centers charge:
- Intensive outpatient (20 sessions): $3,500
- Residential treatment (30 days): $8,500
- Detox: $400 per day
- Transitional living: $70 per day
- PROMETA (Methamphetamine/Cocaine): $15,000
- PROMETA (Alcohol): $13,000
Note: The PROMETA treatment programs consist of nutritional supplements and prescription medications that are
administered in order to reduce physiological cravings and keep relapses to a minimum.
The Cost for Outpatient Rehab/Detox Programs
The cost for outpatient 30-day rehab programs can be as low as $2,500 and as high as $6,000 or more, depending
on the treatment options and techniques that are provided.
Conclusion: Detox Centers
The first priority when considering addiction recovery is the detoxification of the addict's body in an attempt
to remove the toxins that remain in the person's system.
While "comprehensive" detoxification can take months or perhaps years, licensed detox centers provide
counseling, medical supervision, and doctor-prescribed medications during the critical first few hours or days of
abstinence when withdrawal symptoms can be physically excruciating, unsafe, and in some instances, fatal.
The short-term goal of drug rehab is to help the addict get through the detox and the withdrawal processes while
fortifying his or her capacity to start functioning more successfully and more responsibly in society.
Fortunately, comprehensive, professional drug rehab programs that are available at detox centers have the
capability to address the medical, physical, psychological, and the social components of drug and/or alcohol