Alcohol is one of the most common sources of substance use problems. Like other addictive substances, it impacts the reward center in your brain and threatens multiple aspects of your life. The legal status and wide cultural acceptance of alcohol sometimes make people think it’s distinct from other drugs.


Alcohol, however, is a psychoactive substance and can be very addictive. Moreover, alcohol use disorders can lead to serious medical problems, worsening mental health problems, and damage relationships. Millions of Americans have been affected by alcohol abuse problems over the past few decades.


Even though alcohol addiction is a chronic disease, alcohol detox and rehab services can help people recover from alcohol dependency. Alcohol misuse is common; some people experience dependence and addiction after excessive drinking.


The addiction and overdose crisis has increased public health concerns involving drugs and alcohol. If you’re looking for alcohol rehab near you, learn about alcohol addiction and treatment here.


What Is Alcohol Rehab?


It is common for people with alcohol use disorders to seek rehab treatment. Addiction treatment services often involve complex processes requiring a multidimensional treatment approach. Addiction can affect you physically, psychologically, and socially, and effective treatment will address these issues.


According to the American Society for Addiction Medicine (ASAM), effective addiction treatment usually follows a continuum-of-care model. Multiple stages in this model involve intensive medical treatment at the highest level. Where you start on this continuum depends on your circumstances.


Medical or clinical professionals will conduct an assessment process when you begin an addiction treatment program. This assessment aims to determine the severity of your alcoholism, other biopsychosocial needs, and what kind of addiction treatment you need. In many cases, alcohol use disorders require medical detoxification and inpatient care.


What Are the Different Types of Alcohol Rehab?

The American Society of Addiction Medicine’s continuum of care model outlines several levels of addiction treatment. Severe substance use disorders require medical supervision and care, so medical detox and inpatient treatment can treat them. In inpatient treatment, there will be 24-hour care and multidimensional needs addressed. You may go through an outpatient treatment program when you don’t need 24-hour medical or clinical guidance.


Here’s a breakdown of each level of care in alcohol addiction treatment.



As part of addiction treatment, medical detox addresses serious medical and substance abuse-related needs. You should take advantage of detox if you experience medical complications during withdrawal. As a result of its ability to cause life-threatening withdrawal symptoms, including seizures and heart-related complications, alcohol is among the most dangerous substances during withdrawal.


Medications may be prescribed to help avoid some of the most severe withdrawal symptoms associated with alcohol detox. Detoxing from alcohol dependence often involves using benzodiazepines. Other medications may be prescribed to control symptoms. Detox will provide medically managed care 24 hours a day.


It is normal for detox services to last between a week and a month, although there is no cap on the length of treatment if you require more time. Apart from medical services, you will likely receive therapies to help address social, behavioral, and psychological issues related to substance abuse.


Inpatient and Residential

A 24-hour inpatient treatment program provides a slightly lower level of care than a medical detox program. People who may experience medical complications will be monitored 24 hours a day. During the post-acute withdrawal phase, alcohol withdrawal can be quite severe. After you stop drinking, seizures may occur, requiring additional monitoring for a week or two.


Treatment in a residential facility includes 24-hour access to clinically managed treatment services, a subcategory of inpatient treatment. You will work with your therapist to create a customized treatment plan during inpatient and residential treatment.


Depending on the severity of your disorder and the type of therapy, you may receive several hours of therapy every week, including individual, group, and family therapy. You may also undergo behavioral therapy to help you overcome thoughts and triggers that cause unhelpful behavior.



Outpatient treatment for substance use disorders occurs during the day while you live independently at night. In contrast to inpatient treatment, which involves 24-hour care and residential services, outpatient treatment is divided into three levels based on the amount of time spent in treatment.


Partially hospitalized, intensively outpatient, and outpatient treatment are the three levels. In partial hospitalization, treatment services are provided for more than 20 hours per week, intensive outpatient treatment is provided for nine or more hours per week, and outpatient treatment is provided for fewer than nine hours.


In formal addiction treatment, outpatient treatment involving fewer than nine hours of treatment services a week is the lowest level of care. However, it is essential in the recovery process for many people. As in higher levels of care, your treatment plan will continue to be tailored to your individual needs. It may include things like group therapy, individual therapy, family therapy, or behavioral therapy.




People who have completed addiction treatment could receive and offer aftercare services that assist them in transitioning from treatment to independent living. Keeping your sobriety by continuously committing to your recovery is important since alcohol addiction is a chronic disease. In addition to connecting you with community resources, like 12-step programs, aftercare coordinators will follow up periodically to determine how you are doing.


Signs You Need Alcohol Rehab

You may feel like alcohol is becoming a problem in your life, but you don’t feel like you drink much more than your friends. How do you know if you need alcohol rehab?


According to the fifth edition of the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM-5), there are 11 signs of addiction. The severity of your substance use disorder will depend on the number of these signs and symptoms you experience.


Symptoms include:


  1. Excessive or prolonged consumption of alcohol.
  2. Not being able to cut down or stop using alcohol.
  3. Administering, using, or recovering from alcohol for a long period.
  4. Alcohol cravings and urges.
  5. As a result of alcohol abuse, you cannot perform your work, home, or school duties.
  6. Drinking despite relationship problems.
  7. Abandoning important social, occupational, and recreational activities because of alcohol abuse.
  8. Using substances again and again, even if it puts your life at risk.
  9. Drinking despite knowing that you have a physical or psychological problem that the substance may have caused or worsened.
  10. Having to drink more and more for the desired effect (tolerance).
  11. Drinking to relieve withdrawal symptoms.


Why Is Detoxing From Alcohol at Home Risky?


Alcohol is a depressant, which slows your central nervous system, producing its relaxing and disinhibiting effects. However, depressants are also among the most dangerous substances during withdrawal. Alcohol can cause seizures and delirium tremens, which can cause life-threatening symptoms like heart attack and stroke. Going through medical detox with professionals around you is the safest way to get through severe alcohol withdrawal.


If you or a loved one is struggling with alcohol addiction, there is a path to sobriety. Learn more about TruPath’s alcohol addiction treatment options today.


Frequently Asked Questions About Alcohol Rehab (FAQs)


Do you have more questions about alcohol rehab and addiction? Check out the answers to these frequently asked questions:


What Should You Expect in Alcohol Rehab?


Your rehab experience will depend on the level of care you need and your personalized treatment plan. If you are chemically dependent on alcohol, you must undergo medical detox, which will be a different experience than lower levels of inpatient treatment.


After detox, you will meet with a therapist to discuss your treatment goals and create a treatment plan tailored to your needs. You will meet with your therapist at least once weekly to discuss your progress and adjust your plan as needed.


Through treatment, you will go through a variety of therapies, which may include behavioral therapies, group therapy, and family therapy. Cognitive behavioral therapy is one of the most common options for treating alcohol addiction.


How Long Do Most Alcohol Rehabs Last?


According to the National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA), the ideal minimum time for addiction treatment is 90 days from start to finish. However, that doesn’t mean you must stay in the highest level of care for the full three months. The time you spend in a formal treatment program will ultimately depend on your needs. You may spend as little as 14 to 28 days in one level of care.


What Is a 30-Day Program?

Generally, a 30-day period is the shortest a person spends in a formal rehabilitation program, whether inpatient or outpatient. It is not a good idea to leave too early because addiction is a chronic disease. Even after inpatient or intensive outpatient rehab, recovery will continue for years to come.


A 30-day treatment program focuses on identifying the triggers that led a client to abuse drugs or alcohol so they can develop strategies to cope successfully with them.


What Is a 60-Day Program?

TruPath offers long-term treatment programs that last 60 days or more. Many clients with long-standing alcohol or drug abuse issues or those with dual diagnoses require more time in treatment at an addiction recovery center.


In long-term treatment, we offer a variety of treatments that extend beyond the one-month program, allowing clients to manage their condition more effectively.


What Is a 90-Day Program?


A 90-day program represents a comprehensive, long-term treatment plan that may go through the full continuum of care. Long-term treatment is ideal for people who have gone through a relapse or chronic active addiction. A 90-day program can disconnect you from a life of active addiction while you learn ways to cope with stressors without using alcohol.


Will Insurance Pay for My Alcohol Rehab?


It is also expensive for people to receive treatment. A full round of alcohol rehab can cost several thousand dollars, just as it does for other kinds of long-term health care. There are ways to make alcohol rehab more affordable. Even though treatment can be costly, alcohol addiction can threaten your finances and livelihood if left untreated.


Depending on your plan, insurance can cover a large portion of your final expenses for addiction treatment. Most private insurance providers offer coverage for mental and behavioral health services, including detox and alcohol rehab.


Are There Medications to Help With Alcohol Rehab?


People struggling with alcoholism may find it hard to quit on their own. In some cases, they may need additional help to overcome their addiction. When the withdrawal symptoms during detox are severe, you may need to taper off a substance slowly to avoid dangerous complications. For example, benzodiazepines are sometimes used to taper off alcohol dependence. Specific rehab programs that employ medications to treat addiction directly are called medication-assisted treatment (MAT).