How Long Does Addiction Recovery Take? What to Expect in the Recovery Journey

How Long Does Addiction Recovery Take? What to Expect in the Recovery Journey


The evidence shows that every day, people choose to recover from addiction on their own. One way or another, they learn and deploy a set of skills that help them get through the strong cravings and urges of the difficult early stages of recovery. Some of the most helpful strategies for dealing with cravings are summarized in the acronym DEADS. Building a support network can take time, but the efforts are worth the benefits of having the right people in your life for your sobriety journey.

It gets in the way of recovery, self-acceptance, and accessing help when needed. If you’ve been in the throes of addictive behaviors for some time, you may be used to chaos and high-stress situations. Getting sober will remove some chaos and stress, but staying sober will require finding a balance between self-care and external responsibilities.

Consume Healthy Foods and Drinks

For most, it’s an excellent first step towards successful long-term addiction recovery. Outpatient rehab attendees are at greater risk of experiencing triggers that challenge their recovery. Because of this, outpatient rehabs are more suitable for people with mild addictions. Patients should also have a high level of motivation to become sober. There are various addiction treatments available to help people achieve and maintain sobriety. An emotionally sober person no longer escapes their emotions with drugs or alcohol.

how long does it take to get sober from drugs

During early sobriety, you will have signs and symptoms – some mild, others uncomfortable. The most common ones include fatigue, mood swings, and depression. In urine, alcohol can be detected from 12 to 130 hours if a person has been drinking excessively.

Reasons for a healthier approach to drinking

The following tips are all ways you can help yourself reach your goals. Taking a cold shower to sober up can be more harmful than good, especially if you’re experiencing alcohol poisoning. The shock of the cold water can cause people to lose consciousness. It can also aggravate brain damage caused by alcohol poisoning. Coffee and energy drinks cannot reduce your blood alcohol level.

By contrast, most adolescents relapsed in social settings when they were trying to enhance a positive emotional state. A small group of adolescents relapsed when facing interpersonal difficulties accompanied by negative emotions and social pressures to drink or use. Treatment and education can help adults learn techniques for handling urges and ways of accepting and managing negative emotions. Treatment and information aimed at adolescents can help them learn techniques for managing both positive and negative emotional states. Peer or mutual support is not restricted to AA or NA; it is available through other programs that similarly offer regular group meetings in which members share their experiences and recovery skills.


For drug use, 12 months is considered the minimum treatment time. Shorter treatment times of around three months have limited effectiveness, in both inpatient and outpatient settings, according to the National Institute on Drug Abuse. Generally, counseling and medication are the most widely available evidence-based options for long-term treatment of substance use disorders. If these emotions become excessive, they can hold you back from recovery. If you are trying to maintain a sober lifestyle, those feelings can become toxic and contribute to relapse if you don’t deal with them properly.

  • Consuming fatty foods after drinking alcohol will not reduce your BAC.
  • Anger is a normal and natural emotion, but how you deal with it will make a difference in maintaining your recovery.
  • If you don’t have supportive family, try to build a support system elsewhere.
  • The following tips are all ways you can help yourself reach your goals.
  • Recognizing this need for change means taking into account how drugs or alcohol have been causing problems in areas of your life.

People in the throes of addiction are not capable of the best form of friendship. Further, those friends can serve as a cue that sets off drug craving and challenges the recovery process. What Is A Sober Living House? Shame is an especially powerful negative feeling that can both invite addiction in the first place and result from it. Either way, it often keeps people trapped in addictive behaviors.

How alcohol affects the body

The liver gets most of the attention when it comes to alcohol metabolism. Anger is a normal and natural emotion, but how you deal with it will make a difference in maintaining your recovery. Having a chaotic or disorganized lifestyle can also hinder your recovery. It’s important to develop a structured daily and weekly schedule and stick to it.

  • Sobriety will not be a very straightforward journey but an emotional roller coaster.
  • For example, the number of days it takes to work through acute alcohol withdrawal symptoms will be different from the days needed to detox from other drugs.
  • And if manage to get through it sober, this is where the real sobriety will start and you will have positive things to look forward to.
  • Adults planned to take part in Dry January, while 35 percent of U.S. adults reported attempting to give up alcohol for a full month in 2022.

This will be a little more intense than the restlessness you faced in the first two weeks. By this time the body and mind have completely detoxed and you might notice physical changes as well but the emotional need for alcohol will get stronger. People with severe addiction problems may need long-term treatment. For example, someone who has battled cocaine addiction and suffers from schizophrenia likely would need to stay in rehab longer than someone dependent on marijuana with no co-occurring mental health disorder. Rehab is unique to each person, and length of stay depends on factors such as the severity of addiction and the rate at which progress is being made. For people with severe drug or alcohol dependencies, such as those that co-occur with mental illness, extended treatment may be needed.

Planning for Cravings and Avoiding Temptation

There are also resources such as 12-step groups and recovery groups. These programs allow members to obtain sponsors who are willing to guide them through the treatment program. Additionally, support group attendance – whether 12-step or some alternative program – is a crucial part of many aftercare programs.

how long does it take to get sober from drugs

Another one of the most important ways to support recovery is to understand that multiple relapses over a number of years are typically part of the process. They are not occasion for blame or despair but for encouraging resumption of recovery. Families can develop awareness of a loved one’s emotional, environmental, and social triggers of substance use and manage those. Studies show that families that participate in treatment programs increase the likelihood of a loved one staying in treatment and maintaining gains.

Discover life without drug or alcohol addiction.

Approximately 90 days is the average duration of outpatient treatment, but some people will continue treatment indefinitely. However, in cases where treatment is undergone as part of a full continuum of care, a client’s time in outpatient care may be significantly shorter. If a person is working, surrounded by a reliable support system, emotionally and financially stable and working through the motivation behind substance use, their treatment could be shorter. Outpatient treatment programs may be undergone on their own, or as part of a step-down treatment that usually involves medical detox and higher levels of care like inpatient treatment. Outpatient includes all services that allow a person to come to the facility, receive treatment and then return to home or work. Early sobriety may come with feelings of fatigue, anxiety, or depression.

Add a comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Comments (0)


Recent Posts

About us

John Hendricks
Blog Editor
We went down the lane, by the body of the man in black, sodden now from the overnight hail, and broke into the woods..
Zillion Cars is another Part of a Swedish management company located here in the UAE. The management team of experienced professionals are a diverse team of skilled professionals from serval countries with expansive experience.
Copyright © 2023. All rights reserved | Design by