What Happens After Drug Rehab?

Rehab can give you a first-rate opportunity to reset your life and get a fresh start. The new location and structured schedule provide a level of predictability and comfort that you may not have had before. In your last few days of rehab, though, you may wonder what comes next. What happens when you go back to your old environment? Your therapists should help you develop skills to change your old routines and return to society, and below you’ll find some ways to put those new skills to good use.

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First of all, set aside some time to celebrate that you’ve come back from rehab. Go out to dinner with a friend or family member. Buy a cupcake from a local grocery store on your way home. Breathe in the fresh air. Just do something to acknowledge the hard work that you’ve put into your recovery.


Rehab may have been a wonderful experience, but it certainly wasn’t an easy one, and you should absolutely give yourself some credit. If you’re reading this article because someone you love is returning from rehab soon, plan something to let your loved one know that you’re proud. Without a doubt, completing rehab is a real accomplishment.

Continued Therapy

If your rehab set up an aftercare plan for you, make sure you follow it.




You probably don’t need reminded that addiction and relapse statistics don’t favor those who don’t avoid bad influences. So stay close to your good influences and lean on them for support. Don’t delay in seeking out continued therapy after rehab. Regular therapy appointments can help you stay on track and keep you from relapsing.


Cognitive Behavioral Therapy is a very effective option. You may have already experienced some form of this therapy in rehab. Cognitive Behavior Therapy teaches a person how to recognize his or her triggers and develop healthy skills to deal with them. CBT also teaches patients how to reroute negative thought patterns and prevent negativity from spiraling out of control.


CBT isn’t the only form of individual therapy, of course. Other options include talk therapy, Eye Movement Desensitization (EMDR), and several others. Many therapists combine different forms of therapy to give their patients a range of coping options.

Do you need help to overcome an addiction? Does someone you know need help? Call today at 800-492-QUIT for help and support.

Follow-Up Appointments

Relapse rates for substance use disorders are similar to the relapse rates of diseases like asthma. Relapse means that treatments should be adjusted, not that the treatment has failed.

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Some rehab facilities make appointments for former residents to check in. These appointments allow participants to report on their progress, and they allow the rehab program therapists to offer continued advice. Take advantage of these follow-up appointments. They’ll make your departure from the facility seem less abrupt, and they’ll give you more time to adjust to the change.

Group Meetings

After you leave rehab, you might choose to participate in a 12-step group, a sober living home,  or other support groups for those who are recovering from a drug or alcohol addiction. These groups give you peer support from people who have been through the similar struggles to the ones that you’ve been through. While Alcoholics Anonymous (AA) is a great option, it’s not your only option. Other groups that provide support for recovering drug addicts include:


  • Narcotics Anonymous
  • Dual Recovery Anonymous
  • Cocaine Anonymous
  • SMART Recovery
  • The Secular Organization for Sobriety


Start by searching for “recovery groups near me” to learn more about options in your community.

Rebuild Your Routine

Of course, the truly difficult part comes from rebuilding your day-to-day routine from the ground up. When drugs or alcohol consumed most of your days before rehab, you may be at a loss when you consider how to fill your free time. Counseling and group recovery can help because you’ll find helpful advice about what to do after rehab. If you can return to your job or school after rehab, you’ll have a way to fill much of your time.


In your free time, you’ll want to find activities that don’t involve drugs or alcohol. For more introverted personalities, that may be as simple as going home after work and catching up on a good TV show. For extroverts, that might mean doing sober activities with new friends. Either way, try to find a balance that works best with your personality. Avoid isolating yourself, but try to get some alone time to reflect and to rest. Take this time to explore new activities and hobbies that you haven’t been able to try before. These activities can help you make new friends with shared interests.

For More Information

If you’re struggling to maintain a lifestyle that doesn’t involve drugs or alcohol, Rehab Info is here to help. We offer information and resources to help you find what you need for recovery. Remember, in many cases insurance pays for rehab costs.

Are you struggling with a drug or alcohol addiction?

Is someone you love struggling with addiction? Contact us today. Call 800-492-QUIT for help.
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