Sometimes, the structure of alcohol rehabilitation programs can provide the tools people need for sobriety.

Alcohol use disorder (AUD), sometimes called alcoholism, is common. It’s estimated that about one-third of U.S. adults experience AUD at some point.

Many people with mild AUD can reduce their drinking with the help of family, friends, or other nonmedical supports. However, people with more serious AUD can benefit from medical alcohol rehabilitation.

These programs can provide medical and mental health support, counseling, therapy, education, and accountability. Inpatient and outpatient programs are available, and they can be the right first step for many people.

There are a few options for rehab programs for alcohol misuse. Typically, you can choose from inpatient or outpatient programs.

Inpatient rehab programs are held at facilities that require overnight stays. These programs allow someone to completely focus on their recovery. They have medical staff on hand to monitor and treat withdrawal symptoms.

During inpatient programs, support such as education and counseling is part of treatment. People attending inpatient rehab can also receive treatment for any mental health conditions that might be contributing to their alcohol misuse.

Outpatient rehab programs are held in a variety of locations. You might be more likely to find a local program than you would if you sought care from an inpatient program. These programs are less intense than inpatient programs but still require commitment from participants.

They also provide counseling, education, and support for people trying to stop alcohol misuse. Typically, outpatient programs are flexible. They allow people to work and keep other commitments while they attend the program.

However, outpatient programs don’t offer as much support as inpatient programs. Some people find it difficult to quit drinking without around-the-clock accountability.

Learn more about how inpatient and outpatient recovery programs work here.

Which is the most successful type of treatment for AUD?

There’s no program that’s best for everyone. It’s important to choose a treatment that fits your unique needs, lifestyle, budget, addiction history, and more.

For someone people, an intensive inpatient program might be the right first step toward sobriety. For others, an outpatient program that allows flexibility can be a smart choice. Many people also begin treatment in an inpatient facility and continue their treatment with a longer outpatient program.

However, doctors typically agree that staying in rehab longer leads to better outcomes, no matter the type of rehab you choose. This means people often see better results from months in outpatient rehab than from just a week or two spent in inpatient rehab.

Was this helpful?

There are multiple benefits to attending a form of alcohol rehab. Although some people may quit drinking on their own, or with the support of nonmedical programs, others find attending outpatient or inpatient rehab programs is the right choice for them.

For people who are living with AUD and who are concerned about withdrawal symptoms or the strong temptation to drink again, alcohol rehab programs can help provide the tools needed for sobriety.

Additional benefits of going to rehab include:

  • Accountability: Programs ensure someone is monitoring your sobriety and keeping you on track.
  • Support: You’ll have both mental and medical support when you choose a rehab program.
  • Counseling: Quitting alcohol can be tough. Having access to mental health services when you stop drinking can be a big help.
  • Education: Programs can provide education about alcohol, its effects on the body, and why many people begin to misuse it.

The average cost of alcohol-related rehabilitation depends on many factors. For instance, your location, the type of program you choose, and any insurance coverage you have can all make a big difference in your final costs.

Typically, inpatient treatment programs are more expensive. An insurance plan is less likely to cover them too. Inpatient programs that provide their costs online list prices ranging between $2,000 and $40,000.

Outpatient treatment programs are often a lot more affordable. Insurance is also more likely to pick up some of the cost. Even if you don’t have insurance, many programs have a total cost of less than $1,000, including all treatments for the duration of your program.

It can be overwhelming to select the right rehabilitation center for you. To get started, you can ask yourself some key questions. These can help you decide which type of center might be best:

  • Will I need support around the clock?
  • Can I take time away from work, my family, or school?
  • How much can I afford to pay for treatment?
  • Do I need support for any mental health conditions or traumatic experiences?
  • Do I need support for any marginalized experiences or discrimination?

To get referrals to programs in your local area and programs that might meet your needs, you can talk with a doctor or connect with the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA). SAMHSA offers a free hotline you can reach by calling 800-662-HELP (4357) 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.

Help is available in both English and Spanish, and representatives can match you with services and rehabilitation programs. You can also use the live chat option on the SAMHSA website.

An alcohol rehabilitation program can be the right first step toward sobriety. These programs can provide support, counseling, education, and accountability as your recovery begins. Typically, you can choose between inpatient and outpatient rehabilitation.

Inpatient recovery is intensive and requires overnight stays at a facility. It can be a good choice for people seeking around-the-clock support during withdrawal and those with co-occurring mental health conditions.

Outpatient programs are less intensive and have flexible scheduling. They can be a smart choice for people who want to continue working or attending school during their treatment.

Either way, rehabilitation programs give many people the tools they need to change their relationship with alcohol.