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Understanding The Importance of Aftercare in the Success of a Drug and Alcohol Recovery Program.

Joining a recovery and rehabilitation program, working hard with your therapy and your treatment, and then successfully overcoming an addiction is a great victory. A Huge Achievement!

Patients feel proud and victorious after they have completed their rehabilitation program and transitioned back to their normal life.

What they may not realize is that leaving an addiction is only the first step towards complete and lifelong victory. Many other steps are necessary to lead a completely drug-free life.

What Happens After You Complete the Rehabilitation Treatment?

Once you leave the rehabilitation center and enter the real world, you feel that you can now face your former addiction, outside the rehabilitation center, as you have become stronger and more aware of the ways things work and that you have left your addictions behind.

What you don’t realize is that coping with your addiction in a rehabilitation center where you had constant support and counseling sessions and where you were under constant treatment, observation and medicines, was easy.

When entering the real world, you are not under constant scrutiny and observation and do not have the available support where you can easily ask for help if you feel the need.

Know that if you experience a relapse, there is usually no quick resolution or turning back, and it can be deadly because the addiction will always come back stronger than before.

Entering your normal life again could come as a shock to you, and it can be difficult to make that adjustment.  You need to build some strength to resist the temptations, and for that, you need constant aftercare.

What is Aftercare and Why Is Aftercare Important?

Aftercare is the most important part of leaving the recovery and treatment program.

When you re-enter your previous life, you will again face the same problems and fears as in the past. However, now you are better educated and informed and ready to deal with them.

With your previous history of addiction and past experiences, giving in to a new addiction can be easier and the temptation stronger. You will need to find a quality and constant aftercare program and work with it for the rest of your life.

Most people that experience a relapse do so in the first three months after release from the recovery and treatment program. The first five years are the most dangerous for a person who has finished his rehabilitation program and re-entered his normal life.

What Happens in an Aftercare Program?

Aftercare is a stage where the person leaves his recovery and treatment program, and upon continuing his normal life, he also receives support and therapy that reinforces his recovery and builds his continuing resistance to the temptation of a relapse.

We’ll discuss this in more detail in this article but briefly here is what an Aftercare program looks like:

  1. Continuing counseling sessions that can be provided on a weekly or bi-monthly basis depending on the individual needs of the person. Counseling helps to keep them intact, keeps their head in their recovery program, and assures that there is a first line contact for them.

  2. 12 step groups are another aftercare method. Some rehab centers arrange this for their members while some patients make the arrangements themselves. New people are encouraged to attend meetings daily for at least three months and then afterward on a regular basis.

  3. Rehabilitation Centers usually offer Support sessions. These sessions reinforce the successful treatment program and offer an opportunity for the patient to discuss their life and adjustments outside of treatment.

  4. Sober living is also an aftercare facility where a rehab patient is encouraged to live a peaceful life in recuperative and sober conditions surrounded by people who love and support him.

Let’s take a deeper look into the world of Aftercare


What Exactly is Aftercare

Aftercare is exactly that, care for the recovering addict after their treatment program has completed.

Aftercare is usually a compiled program of additional and continuing support activities after treatment. It includes supportive programs in many forms and with many names but the Aftercare program usually includes continuing therapy sessions, booster sessions, support groups and 12 step programs.

Most treatment centers will offer effective Aftercare programs to their graduating patients.  If not, it’s easy to find aftercare by doing a little research and also asking the professionals that you are working with during your treatment program.

Making the Transition from Recovery and Treatment to an Aftercare Program


Aftercare is a part of the lifelong recovery path a recovering addict has chosen to follow.  It’s equally as important as the recovery and treatment program. Many consider it to be even more important.

Upon completing a treatment program, your work is just beginning.  It’s just one phase of your overall long-term recuperation.  Now, you need to move into the Aftercare program.

You should begin planning your aftercare while you are still in treatment so don’t wait. Know what you are going to do, who you are going to work with, what programs you will participate in, and you should have a list of contact information and names of people who will assist you.

Upon completion of your regular treatment program, you should immediately begin your aftercare program.

The Threat of Relapse Is Always There

As you read and study addiction recovery and treatment news and articles, you will see some statistics about relapse. I’ve seen statistics that say anywhere from 50% to 67% of all addicts who complete treatment programs will relapse.

Relapse is a danger to all recovering addicts, and it includes a risk that those who do suffer a relapse may never get another chance at recovery.

The good news is that relapse is highly preventable when the patient enters and participates in a good aftercare program and does it immediately because the highest risk of relapse is within the first 60 days after treatment.

What Causes Relapse

Upon the completion of your treatment program, you mistakenly believed that the most difficult part was over.  Wrong!

You walk out the treatment center door, full of pride and joy at your success, and full of enthusiasm for the future.  However, when you return to your normal life, it can be like a huge ‘slap-in-the-face’ wakeup call.

Now you can see just what the temptations were in your former addictive life and how hard it will be to keep from falling back into those dangerous behaviors and associations from your past unless there is some continuous exposure to your recovery.

Your fresh motivation and commitment can fade over time. You can forget about the pain from the addiction and past life.  You can slowly slip back into that addictive behavior and use.

A proper Aftercare program may be the only thing to save you and keep you from relapse and losing all of that healthy progress and success in recovery.

The Critical Need for Aftercare

It is a proven fact that those with a strong aftercare program are less likely to experience a relapse.

A carefully designed Aftercare program and a motivated recovering addict work well together.  The aftercare program provides additional training and support and a way to reach out when things get tough, or a crisis occurs.

Beginning with a solid foundation that comes with completing a good treatment plan, and then adding the power of a well-designed aftercare program, the recovering addict is well equipped to face a normal life and handle the distractions and temptations that come with it.

Different Types of Available Aftercare

There is a wide choice of aftercare options available today. Some Rehabilitation and Treatment Centers have established aftercare programs for those who have completed their treatment offerings. The patients can arrange other Aftercare programs and options.

          Twelve-Step Groups


Twelve Step programs are probably the best known but least understood in the wide variety of support programs available today.

Everyone has heard of Alcoholic Anonymous or Narcotics Anonymous, but most people have no idea what these programs are, how they work, and they usually know nothing about the huge benefits available to the suffering and recovering addict.

12 step programs are readily available across the land and are available in almost any city or town. Often hosted in Churches or other rent-free centers, the programs are offered to anyone regardless of race, color, or creed.  They are not religious or political and are open to anyone who walks in the door without cost.

To understand 12 Step Programs and all of their benefits and features, we have created a very informative report with all of the details of a 12 step program.  Please download our free report PDF Here:

          Support Groups

There are many other support groups available. Some are very commercial and sell their books, DVD’s, and Video products.  Some are religious and based on their beliefs.  Some are very controversial and argumentative.

My advice is to begin your investigation and search by speaking with the professionals at your treatment center.  They will be very helpful and informative and have nothing to gain by recommending one program over another.  Their advice is laden with experience.

Next, consider their recommendations, do some study and research, and then visit the program to get a first-hand impression of the program and how it might fit into your aftercare program.

          Booster sessions

A relatively new idea that is gaining in popularity is participation in Booster Sessions offered by your Treatment center or one that offers this program.

Booster programs are available to graduates of a treatment program, and they usually must have at least six months of success in their recovery.

The idea behind these programs is to explore the experiences of your recovery at early stages and to identify and understand the coping strategies and life skills that you learned and put to use.

These powerful sessions will rekindle that ‘Fire’ from your early successes and help you reinforce what is working for you and learn some new strategies and techniques.

          Counseling Sessions

There are some very skilled and talented counselors available.  Usually found and recommended by your treatment center, these dedicated professionals can be an enormous help to a recovering addict.

You can discuss your progress, your difficulties, your temptations, and anything regarding your recovery. You can ask questions, get advice, and know that there is someone you can talk to about your recovery.

The sessions are very therapeutic and helpful in preventing relapse.

          Dual diagnosis support

Anyone with a dual diagnosis needs to find a special support program that accommodates these multiple aspects of their recovery.

Suffering from a drug or alcohol addiction and at the same time suffering from mental issues such as depression, anger, phobias, or other mental health conditions means that a regular Support program might not be the right fit for you.

The type of support you need will depend on your diagnosis what type of program is best for you.  To find the right program it is best to start at your treatment center where the professionals will have answers to your questions and advice about how to proceed.

Effective Management Strategies Needed

Like solving any problem in life or business, you need to identify the problem, research and define solutions, and then apply them and take action.

It’s entirely up to you.  There are some wonderful aftercare programs available and professional people available to assist you.

However, if you don’t take action, then almost nothing will be done, and nobody will help you.

Take action today!  Begin your research an study. Make contacts. Get information. Visit programs and gain information.  And then build the best and most powerful personal aftercare program you can.

It’s your life. It’s up to you!


For more information and assistance locating highly-rated aftercare programs, call 1-888-971-2986. A rehab placement specialist can help you identify personal needs and preferences while guiding you or someone you love in choosing the right addiction rehab aftercare programs. Addiction rehab aftercare is essential to continue your path to recovery and a healthy, substance-free life.

Chateau Recovery

One very successful Treatment Center that will fulfill all of your expectations and requirements is the lovely Chateau Recovery.

This energetic facility is in a small resort town in the peaceful mountainous countryside outside of Salt Lake City. Chateau Recovery offers some unique and successful Recovery and Treatment programs to suffering substance abuse patients from across the Nation and around the World.

Chateau Recovery Center 375 Rainbow Lane
Midway, UT 84049, USA
If you or someone you love has questions concerning the rehabilitation process, call our free helpline Phone: +1 888-971-2986 for more information. Calls are always confidential, private, and secure.
Please call our toll-free helpline which is open 24 hours a day, seven days a week and is staffed by experienced and caring professionals who can answer your questions and help you navigate through the process of evaluating and securing a treatment program for your suffering loved one.

Whole Self

You may have been trying to convince everyone around you that you are not one-dimensional and don’t have simple problems.  We understand and agree. Substance abuse is often an attempt to solve problems in one or more of these dimensions. Superficial labels and rigid diagnoses alone often ignore our humanity and often create shame, reactivity, and exclusion.

Your recovery requires flexibility and hope!  

Understanding and treating all dimensions of your experience – with therapy, peer support, “safe” fun and adventure, healthy living, experiential learning – help you get “unstuck” by opening up to new perspectives and creative opportunities to help yourself.

So here is our philosophy, as reduced as possible: every human being is composed of multiple internal systems.  Substance use and its lifestyle consequences affect most, if not all, of these systems.

One of our goals, at Chateau Recovery, is to educate and empower you and your family/support network, so no one gets “stuck” in painful patterns of blame, denial and attempts to control one another.

In the same way that your problems are not “simple,” the solution also requires vigilance, consistent practice, empathy, and resilience. Most individuals, or sometimes families, don’t slow down long enough to examine each dimension themselves.  The very act of slowing down and taking a closer look creates more insight and appreciation for overlooked details.  At Chateau Recovery, we remove the distractions and create an environment to help you slow down and examine Mental and Emotional Wellness, Biological Wellness, Family System Wellness, Social and Interpersonal Wellness, and Transcendence.  Each of these meaningful areas needs attention and healing.


“everyone seems to be always trying to sell something” … a book… a program… etc.  Our advice is to just ignore the sales pitches and get what you can from the content.”

Here is a great video

It’s full of information and facts about the importance of aftercare in a Long-Term Recovery and Treatment program.

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