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Alcohol Rehab Programs | Detox & Treatment Options

Published on September 25, 2020
young man looking out of a window of a rehab center

Alcohol is one of the most popular and widely-accepted substances in society, but alcohol addiction is a serious problem that may require substance abuse treatment. 

If you or a loved one are struggling with alcohol abuse or addiction, recovery is possible through professional drug and alcohol rehab centers. 

Alcohol Rehab Programs & Treatment Options

The best resource available to anyone struggling with alcohol use disorder is an addiction treatment program. To treat alcohol addiction, rehab programs give patients the tools they need to overcome triggers and make healthier decisions overall. 

During an alcohol treatment program, you may also explore the factors that led to your addiction in the first place, such as underlying mental health issues. 

Not all alcohol addiction treatment programs offer the same services. In addition, every individual’s journey to addiction recovery is unique. For this reason, it’s important to look for an addiction treatment program that offers individualized treatment services. 

Some of the services that may be offered in your alcohol treatment program include:

  • detox
  • medication
  • behavioral therapy
  • support groups
  • inpatient treatment
  • outpatient treatment
  • aftercare

Alcohol Detox Programs

Alcohol detox programs are designed to help you through the process of alcohol withdrawal by providing specific forms of support, such as medical supervision or medication. 

The amount of time it takes and the level of care you need during detox will depend on several factors, including: 

  • how much you have been drinking
  • the severity of your withdrawal symptoms
  • your current physical condition 

Alcohol detox programs may be conducted in inpatient or outpatient settings, and are short-term programs to help prepare you for alcohol rehab. 

Learn more about Alcohol Detox Programs

Medication-Assisted Treatment (MAT)

Medication-assisted treatment (MAT) programs use specific medications to combat cravings for alcohol and make it easier for you to stay sober.

In most cases, these programs combine medication with behavioral therapy and peer support groups to increase success rates. 

MAT programs designed to treat alcohol use disorder may include the following medications:

MAT medications for alcohol addiction help lower cravings, decrease discomfort, and deter you from drinking.  

Behavioral Therapy

Behavioral therapy is a specific type of therapy that can be effective for patients with alcohol use disorders and is often incorporated into alcohol treatment programs. 

The goal of behavioral therapy is to help you identify unhealthy or unsafe behavioral patterns linked to alcohol abuse and change them into better behavioral patterns that keep you sober. 

Some behavioral therapies that are offered at alcohol treatment centers may include: 

Support Groups

Support groups for patients with alcohol use disorders allow you to connect with other people who are on the journey to recover from the same condition as you. 

During support group meetings, including 12-step programs like Alcoholics Anonymous, you can: 

  • share your experiences with others
  • learn from their experiences
  • receive the support you need to persevere through the treatment process

Support groups can be used during formal alcohol treatment but may also be used as a form of aftercare. 

Inpatient Treatment

Inpatient treatment programs are one of the most intensive forms of therapy available to patients with alcohol use disorders. 

This type of alcohol rehab program requires you to remain at a treatment facility day and night until your program is complete. While in an inpatient program, you may participate in a variety of individual and group-based activities, including family therapy. 

Inpatient or residential treatment may also be recommended if your alcohol use disorder co-occurs with a mental health disorder like depression. These rehab facilities likely offer an integrated approach for dual diagnosis that treats both conditions simultaneously.

Outpatient Treatment

Outpatient treatment programs offer more freedom, allowing you to leave the treatment center when you’re not actively participating in a session. Most outpatient treatment programs for alcohol use disorders require you to visit the facility several times each week.

Outpatient programs for alcohol abuse may include partial hospitalization programs or intensive outpatient treatment


The purpose of aftercare is to keep you connected to the addiction recovery community and provide ongoing support after you have completed your alcohol treatment program. 

Aftercare services may be focused on your recovery, or they may be practical in nature. 

Examples of recovery-focused services include: 

Examples of practical services include: 

  • job placement assistance
  • parenting classes
  • legal assistance

Tips For Finding Alcohol Treatment

A wide-range of alcohol and drug addiction treatment programs are available, making it challenging to find the right treatment provider for your needs. 

As you compare your treatment options, be sure to consider each of the following factors. 

  • availability of individualized treatment plans — Individualized treatment plans are tailored to meet your specific needs are often more effective than a one-size-fits-all treatment approach. 
  • dual diagnosis treatmentMany people with an alcohol use disorder have co-occurring mental health disorders as well. In such cases, finding a treatment center that addresses both conditions at the same time is essential. 
  • family therapy If you have family members who would like to be involved in the treatment process, finding a treatment program that allows family involvement is recommended. 
  • counselor credentials — If possible, select a facility that employs licensed alcohol and drug abuse counselors. 
  • insurance coverage — If you have insurance coverage, it may be in your best interest to choose an in-network treatment center if possible. 

What To Expect At Ark Behavioral Health

Ark Behavioral Health offers a range of individualized treatment options for patients with alcohol use disorder and other substance use disorders. 

We offer treatment at all levels of care, including detoxification, inpatient care, outpatient care, intensive outpatient care, and partial hospitalization. All treatment plans are customized to meet your needs, and treatment for co-occurring disorders is available as well.

Alcohol Treatment FAQ

What Does An Alcohol Counselor Do?

An alcohol counselor offers guidance about the alcohol treatment process. This may include referring you to other resources, identifying and improving habits, and preparing for difficult situations. 

Alcohol counselors likely work with other medical professionals as part of a comprehensive treatment program.

Learn more about Alcohol Counseling

What Happens During An Alcohol Assessment?

An alcohol assessment is a screening tool to determine whether you have a drinking problem. 

There are numerous types of alcohol assessments, including the CAGE Questionnaire, the Michigan Alcoholism Screening Test (MAST), and the Alcohol Use Disorders Identification Test (AUDIT).

All alcohol assessments include questions about your relationship with alcohol. If your answers indicate you have a drinking problem, you’ll need further evaluation so you can get an official diagnosis and professional treatment. 

To learn more, read What To Expect From An Alcohol Assessment Or Screening

Does Insurance Cover Alcohol Rehab?

In most cases, yes. Both private and public health insurance plans can pay for some or all of alcohol rehab. 

However, the amount of coverage you’ll receive depends on various factors, including your specific policy and the treatment center you choose.

To determine how much coverage you’ll receive, contact your health insurance provider along with the addiction treatment providers you’re interested in. 

Learn more about Alcohol Rehab Insurance

What Is An Alcohol Intervention?

An alcohol intervention is when loved ones get together and ask someone to get help for alcohol abuse or addiction. The goal is to convince them that they need treatment. The most effective interventions are done from a place of compassion rather than judgment. 

An intervention may involve friends or family members telling someone how much they care about them and want to see them live a better life. They may point out ways that alcohol addiction is hurting them or others around them. 

To learn more, read How To Stage An Alcohol Intervention

Does Drinking In Moderation Compare To Total Abstinence?

Drinking in moderation can be an effective part of an alcohol treatment program, especially for younger patients. However, studies still point to total abstinence as being more effective and less risky than moderate drinking in most cases.

Learn more about Alcohol Abstinence Vs. Moderate Drinking

How Can You Find An Alcohol Rehab Center Near You?

You can visit the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) website and contact their national helpline, which is available 24/7. 

With a quick internet search, you can also find local rehab centers in your area. Browse each location’s offerings to find the alcohol rehab center that works best for you.

Learn more about How To Find An Alcohol Rehab Center Near You

Can You Quit Alcohol Without Professional Help?

You can quit alcohol without professional help. However, because of how severe and sometimes life-threatening the symptoms of alcohol withdrawal can be, it is not recommended. Safer alternatives include going through your doctor or an addiction treatment program.

Learn more about Quitting Alcohol Cold Turkey

Written by Ark Behavioral Health Editorial Team
This page does not provide medical advice.

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) - Excessive Alcohol Use
National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism (NIAAA) - Alcohol Use Disorder
MedLine Plus - Alcohol Use Disorder (AUD)
Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) - MAT Medications, Counseling, and Related Conditions

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