addiction treatment timeline

Addiction Treatment Timeline

Dr. Norris Von Curl, II, MD

Dr. Norris Von Curl, II, MD

If you or a loved one needs treatment for addiction to drugs or alcohol, you’re probably wondering what to expect down the road. How long will the detox period last? What can you expect in residential treatment? And what will the first year of recovery look like? What’s the Addiction Treatment Timeline?

The first thing you need to realize is that you are not alone: 17.3 million Americans suffer from alcohol abuse, while 6.9 million Americans suffer from drug dependence or abuse. This means that nearly half of all Americans have a close friend or family member who’s suffered from addiction.

Fortunately, long term addiction treatment offers hope to those with substance abuse disorder and their families. Here’s what to expect:

The First Two Weeks: Detox (Addiction Treatment Timeline)

Drugs and alcohol create drastic changes in both your brain and body. For example, drugs like cocaine release huge amounts of neurotransmitters (chemical messengers in the brain), which can affect the way you think and feel. Drugs like heroin impact the parts of your brain that regulate crucial functions like heart rate and breathing.

When you stop using drugs or alcohol, your brain and body need time to adapt to the sudden change. Attempting to quit “cold turkey” without the assistance of a trained team can have dangerous, painful, or even deadly consequences.

The team at an addiction treatment center will help you detox in a safe environment. Often, they will use special medications to help you safely withdraw from drugs or alcohol. The detox process will look like this:

  • Evaluation. First, your team will evaluate which substances (and how much) are in your bloodstream. Then, they’ll make sure to get a full assessment of your medical, social, mental, and social health so that they can get you the help you need.
  • Stabilization. Then, your team will use a combination of techniques, including medication, to get your medically and psychologically stable. At this point, it’s really important for your team to know how your friends and family will fit into the picture during your recovery.
  • Getting you ready for treatment. From there, your team will focus on getting you prepared for the next stage of your journey, ensuring that you understand how crucial it is to follow through with treatment at this point.

Some people will successfully go through detox in a matter of days. For others, this process could take up to two weeks.

The First 30-90 Days: Residential Treatment

After you’ve safely made it through the detox phase of addiction treatment, you will embark on the next crucial part of your recovery journey. For many, this is where the real work of recovery truly begins. Your residential environment will be tranquil, nurturing, and safe. It will be tailored to your unique needs, and include a variety of treatments that work in harmony to give you the best chance of success.

Expect to receive individualized counseling, psychological support, and 12-step programs. In addition, a quality treatment center will combine traditional therapy alternative and complementary healing modalities like art therapy and music therapy. This dynamic and holistic residential treatment will last anywhere from 30 to 90 days, and is focused on getting you prepared for sober life outside the treatment center.

The First Year: IOP Program

When it’s time to leave your residential program, it’s normal to feel a little overwhelmed. After all, recovery is a lifelong journey, and relapse occurs approximately 40-60% of the time. Fortunately, it’s possible to get support and personalized attention through an IOP Program that can take you through the first year of recovery.

With an outpatient IOP Program, you will be able to get back to work and resume your normal activities. However, you will also be equipped with a tailored treatment program — complete with counseling, therapy, and complementary modalities — that will help you cope with everyday challenges. Though you may face some difficult moments, your first year of recovery will still offer you many opportunities for fun, joy, laughter, and time with friends and family.

For those supporting a loved one during the first year of recovery, remember to be patient and compassionate during this time. Your loved one will need extra support as they navigate the unique challenges of the first year of long term addiction treatment.

Addiction Treatment Timeline: Get Help Today

After the first year of treatment, you will have a solid basis to build on your newfound sobriety. With the tools and strategies you received in treatment, along with support from friends and family, you can feel hopeful about your lifelong road to recovery.

Whether you’re seeking help for a substance abuse disorder, or supporting someone who is suffering, it’s never too late to seek help. A high-quality addiction treatment center can help you get the personalized help you need. With the right program, you can receive assistance through every stage of your journey: from medical detox treatment, to residential treatment, to a tailored IOP Program.

First Steps Recovery is committed to helping people in Fresno, CA, and the surrounding areas get the help they need. If you or someone you care about is seeking treatment for substance abuse in Central California — or beyond — please contact us today.

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