Inpatient Care for Alcohol Addiction: 5 Things You Need to Know

Are you or a loved one among the 23 million Americans who struggle with substance abuse?

When you’re battling alcohol addiction, it’s easy to feel like you’re all alone. In reality, though, one in ten of us has been a drug or alcohol addict at some point in our lives.

If you’re ready to break free from your addiction once and for all, you’ll need professional help to succeed. No doubt you’ve heard of inpatient care as an option for alcohol rehab, but how does it work?

Here are five things you can expect from inpatient alcohol or drug rehab.

1. Medically Managed Alcohol Detox

An all-important first step in recovery is weaning your body off its alcohol dependency. When you check into a center like, you’ll need to detox before you can do anything else.

The length and severity of the detox process depend on the length and severity of your addiction. For most patients, the process takes anywhere from a few days to a few weeks. During the detox stage, your doctor may prescribe drugs such as acamprosate or disulfiram to ease the physical symptoms of withdrawal.

2. Talk Therapy

Therapy is an essential part of any inpatient care program. It might include:

  • One-on-one sessions with a personal counselor
  • Group therapy sessions
  • Private sessions with family members

Each type of therapy has different goals. During private sessions, you’ll identify triggers and create an actionable plan to achieve your goals. During group sessions, you may share personal stories or effective coping strategies.

3. Physical Exercise

Researchers have confirmed that physical exercise is a powerful ally in the battle against alcohol addiction. The release of endorphins is only part of the puzzle.

Exercise can help to ease any discomfort the patient in recovery could be experiencing. It’s also a proven way to regulate mood, improve physical and mental health, and adjust to a normal sleeping schedule.

Expect to go for long walks, do yoga, work out in the gym, or take part in other fitness classes during your stay.

4. Healthy Meals

When patients have struggled with addiction for a long time, their health often takes a hit. They’re so consumed with their addiction that they often fail to eat balanced, nutritious meals — or to eat regularly at all.

Another goal of alcohol rehab is to improve physical health through nutrition therapy. You can expect to eat three solid, nutritious meals that offer a good balance of protein, fats, and carbs.

5. Other Activities

Recovering patients are sometimes overwhelmed by the amount of free time they have. Without structure and order in their life, they may not know where to start.

Expect your days at rehab to be full of activities to keep you busy (and focused on your goals). In addition to three meals a day and therapy, you can expect to participate in arts and crafts programs, mediation sessions, teambuilding projects, and similar activities.

Alcohol Rehab: Is Inpatient Care Right for You?

There’s a dizzying number of options when it comes to alcohol rehab. For many people, inpatient care is an all-important first step on the road to recovery.

Use the information presented above to decide whether an inpatient program is best for your situation.

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